In two of the last three games, the New York Mets failed to get multiple innings out of their starting pitcher, and Marcus Stroman gave them the length they desperately needed. Stroman pitched eight dominant innings, holding the Cincinnati Reds to just one hit on the day. It gave Luis Rojas a nice welcome as he returned from his two-game suspension and led the Mets to a 7-0 win.
— New York Mets (@Mets) July 21, 2021
Stroman had struggled over his last handful of starts but was masterful and efficient from the start. He struck out seven over his eight shutout innings and needed just 90 pitches. Stroman’s sinker/slider combination kept Reds hitters flailing and making weak contact, resulting in nine groundouts. Jeurys Familia finished the one-hit shutout by striking out the side in the ninth inning.
Since the second half started, the Mets offense has found the life it did not have for the first half. All of the seven runs the Mets scored came on home runs. Jonathan Villar opened up the scoring with a second-inning solo homer, and Dominic Smith‘s grand slam in the following inning gave the Mets a 5-0 lead. Luis Guillorme‘s first home run of the season made it a 7-0 game, which was more than enough for Stroman. Only one starting position player failed to record a hit in the series finale.
The win was their 50th of the season pushes the Mets back to over .500 in July. It also guarantees the Mets keep at least a 2.5 game lead over the Philadelphia Phillies in the NL East. Despite getting a whole week to rest for the All-Star Break, they get a much-needed day off on Thursday. When they return to Citi Field, they welcome the Toronto Blue Jays into Queens. The first pitch is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET.