CLEVELAND (AP) — Ben Lively had another solid start, David Fry drove in two early runs and the Cleveland Guardians won their fourth straight, 3-1 on Monday night over the New York Mets to ruin Francisco Lindor's return.

The Guardians won for the seventh time in eight games. The AL Central leaders are beginning to show they're more than an early season surprise.

“We’re kind of already to the point of past the start,” said the versatile Fry. “After the first week or two, the new season kind of wears off. We just have a really good mindset and everybody’s just having a lot of fun right now.”

Lindor, who spent six seasons with Cleveland, went 0 for 4 in his first game at Progressive Field since being traded to New York in 2021.

The four-time All-Star shortstop struck out, grounded out twice and flied out, dropping his average to .193.

Lively (3-2) allowed just one run — a homer — and six hits in 5 2/3 innings before first-year manager Stephen Vogt turned things over to his bullish bullpen.

Nick Sandlin took over a two-on, two-out situation in the sixth and gave up a walk before striking out Brett Baty with the bases loaded. Scott Barlow pitched a 1-2-3 seventh and rookie Cade Smith struck out two in the eighth.

Cleveland closer Emmanuel Clase finished up the combined six-hitter in the ninth for his 14th save. The right-hander has given up just one earned run in 24 1/3 innings this season.

“They carry us,” Fry said of Cleveland's relievers. “Every time they come into the game, we’re just like, yep, they’re going to get a bunch of zeros.”

The Guardians didn't get a hit after the fourth but snapped a seven-game losing streak against the Mets.

Tomás Nido homered for New York, which fell to 3-8 since May 9.

The Mets struck out 11 times, and when they did get something started, they got in their own way.

After J.D. Martinez doubled in the second, Sterling Marte hit a comebacker. Martinez got caught in a rundown between second and third, and Marte made things worse by getting thrown out trying to scramble back to first.

“We didn’t play well,” said manager Carlos Mendoza. "We made a couple of mistakes. It wasn’t as good game.”

The Mets' first trip to Cleveland since 2016 was also a homecoming for Lindor.

The 30-year-old received a warm ovation — there were some scattered boos — before leading off the first from Cleveland fans, who cheered him through six seasons, four playoff appearances and a memorable 2016 World Series.

Lindor once thought he would spend his entire career with Cleveland, but the club couldn't meet his price on a long-term contract and dealt him.

Marte was ejected in the fourth inning by plate umpire Manny Gonzalez for arguing a called third strike. Marte thought the pitch was low, dropped his bat and gloves and continued to bark as he walked away before getting tossed.

Tylor Megill (0-2) was activated from the injured list and made his first start for New York since March 31 after being sidelined with a shoulder strain.

The right-hander got two quick outs in the first before giving up three straight singles, the last a two-run liner by Fry.

Nido, the Mets' No. 9 hitter, connected for his second homer in the third to pull the Mets within 2-1.

But Guardians rookie Kyle Manzardo, who has been putting together better at-bats lately, got his second RBI with a double in the fourth to score Fry.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Mets: RHP Kodai Senga (shoulder) felt tightness in his triceps after playing long toss and didn't throw a planned bullpen session on Sunday. Mendoza said Senga was checked by doctors, and at this point the tightness is a “low-level concern.” Mendoza is hoping Senga can resume his throwing program later this week.

UP NEXT

Guardians RHP Carlos Carrasco (2-4, 5.16 ERA) faces the Mets for the first time since the club decided not to re-sign him after three seasons. New York counters with Adrian Houser (0-3, 7.44).