Mets Escape Philadelphia By Inches In 8-7 Victory Over Phillies

What the hell just happened?

The New York Mets survived the final game of their three-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies thanks to the convenience of instant replay. Rhys Hoskins seemed to rip out the hearts over every Mets fan with a three-run game-tying home run off Edwin Diaz in the ninth.

Thanks to the wonders of instant replay, Hoskins hit the tippy-top of the fence, which changed his home run to a double. Unfortunately, Diaz had to leave the game with an undisclosed injury. Jeurys Familia came in with ice in his veins to strike out Bryce Harper and allow the Mets to crawl away with a victory.

On the offensive side for the Mets, Jose Alvarado made a horrible mistake by waking up a sleeping giant on Friday. Donnie Stevenson was born and has led the Mets to two victories against the Philadelphia Phillies.

Before diving into Alvarado’s lack of control, who would have thought Kevin Pillar and Jonathan Villar would begin a Mets comeback? In the eighth, Pillar brought the Mets within a run with his home run against Brandon Kintzler. Villar found just enough space to record a single up the middle, then wreaked havoc on the bases.

Bullpen Issues on Both Sides

Kintzler spent plenty of time occupied with Villar’s speed over the next two batters. With Villar on the move, Jose Peraza lined a single, and it banged right off the first baseman Hoskins glove. If Hoskins snagged it, the Phillies get a double play to end the inning, but it kept the Mets alive. Once Hoskins picked up the ball to make matters worse, he lobbed it back to the infield, and aggressive baserunning from Villar caught the Phils napping to tie the game.

Revenge is a dish best served cold, and the Mets handed a frozen platter to Alvarado. After allowing a first-pitch single, Alvarado walked Francisco Lindor and Michael Conforto consecutively to give the Mets a 5-4 lead. Phillies manager Joe Girardi turned the ball over to David Hale, who provided little relief. Pete Alonso blew the door wide open with a bases-clearing double to cap off the rally and give the Mets an 8-4 lead.

David Peterson looked like he would leave his start early after the Phillies were hitting rockets off him. A masterful double play from McNeil and Lindor gave Peterson all the momentum he needed to allow him to survive. Peterson did more than survive by getting through five innings, holding the Phils to just one run, and recording eight strikeouts.

Why Diaz?

For both team’s bullpens, making it out alive was the name of the game. At first, it looked like Miguel Castro would become the only casualty. Castro allowed a three-run homer to Didi Gregorius in the sixth inning, giving Phillies a 4-2 lead. The bullpen was due to hit a bump in the road. Heading into the night, they had thrown 18 consecutive scoreless innings.

Manager Luis Rojas managed the game very well until he decided to use Diaz when he did not need to. Rojas easily could have turned to Familia, Sean Reid-Foley, or Robert Gsellman with Diaz as an insurance policy. It was evident from a four-pitch walk that Diaz would not be at his best and resulted in suffering an injury.

Somehow the Mets are 11-11 and back to a tie for first place in the NL East. They will head to St. Louis to face the Cardinals for a four-game series starting on Monday. Even though it was ugly, the Mets needed to get a couple of wins on the board and hope to carry their momentum on the rest of the road trip.

 

Mets Game Preview: (5/1/21) @ Philadelphia Phillies (13-13)

It is gut-check time for the New York Mets after the Philadelphia Phillies bullied their way to a win on Friday. Game two of the series is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. ET from Citizens Bank Park, and there figures to be plenty of animosity after yesterday’s fireworks.

The bench-clearing issue between Jose Alvarado and Dominic Smith highlighted Friday night’s game. It slightly dimmed the spotlight on the struggling offense that only managed to put up one run and allowed two unearned runs to score. As professionals, the Mets avoided any fight that would have led to suspensions, but there is certainly frustration and anger heading into Saturday’s matchup.

Alvarado’s could be what the Mets need to wake them up as the calendar flips to May. A victory gets them back to .500 and puts the Mets back in a tie for first place. Tensions always run high between Philly and New York, and when both teams are good, they heighten even more. Look for the Mets to get their offense going early and attempt to carry it through the rest of the series.

Pitching Matchup

Taijuan Walker was on the front lines when the benches cleared and gets his chance to get some payback on the field. He is coming off his best start of the season, where he pitched seven shutout innings against the Chicago Cubs. Walks are still a small issue, but he limited the Cubs to just three.

Zack Wheeler has been nothing short of spectacular this season with his 3.13 ERA. In his last start against the St. Louis Cardinals, he went eight innings, allowed one run, and struck out nine. Wheeler also threw a season-high 114 pitches and should be fully ready to match the same number if he pitches well again.

Matchups To Lookout For

Taijuan Walker vs. Andrew McCutchen: 1-for-8 (.125), Double, 4 Strikeouts

Zack Wheeler vs. J.D. Davis: 4-for-9 (.444), 2 Doubles, Home Run, 2 Strikeouts

Zack Wheeler vs. Dominic Smith: 6-for-13 (.462), Double, 3 Strikeouts

Mets Offense Barely Shows Up For 2-1 Loss to Phillies

The New York Mets offense continues to fail hilariously, and the Philadelphia Phillies added insult to injury. In the bottom of the eighth, the Mets had their best chance to take the lead against the wild Jose Alvarado. Dominic Smith wasted a 3-0 count with runners on second and third and struck out to leave to tying and lead runs on base.

The fired-up Alvarado made a gesture toward Smith to shut his mouth after Smith was vocal about his lack of control earlier this season. It looked like Alvarado was welcoming a fight as well, and Smith wanted all the smoke. Much like fights in the NBA, the guy who starts it ended up backing away once there was any action. Also, much like MLB fights, nothing came of the bench clearings.

An unfortunate stat from the loss is that the Mets had more bench clearings than runs scored. Another ugly number is their 1-for-14 with runners in scoring position with nine men left on base. Smith was responsible for the lone run with his RBI single but other than that; this was another dreadful game. The Phillies did nothing to earn their runs either as a passed ball in the second inning allowed their only two runs to score.

Stroman’s Strong Outing

Marcus Stroman‘s outing is lost in all of the late-inning chaos. He only needed 64 pitched to make it through five innings but was removed due to a left hamstring issue. Stroman had eight strikeouts, which was his season-high, but fell victim as another tough-luck loser to the Mets offense.

If this rock bottom loss to end the month does not light a fire under the Mets, nothing will. They handed the Phillies their runs, wasted 14 opportunities to score, and were actively challenged to a fight. Hopefully, they can turn the calendar to May and flush the crazy month of April away. Saturday’s matchup will be a true test of the type of character this team is made of.

Taijuan Walker was on the front lines when the bench cleared and will start against former Met Zack Wheeler. The game will start an hour earlier at 6:05 p.m. ET and be ready for plenty of fireworks as the series continues.

Mets Game Preview: (4/30/21) @ Philadelphia Phillies (12-13)

Simeon Woods-Richardson

After taking a day off, the New York Mets take a trip to Philadelphia to face the Phillies in a three-game weekend series. Both teams enter one game under the .500 mark, but both sit in a three-way tie for first place in the NL East. The first pitch from Citizens Bank Park is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. ET as both teams try to close out April on a high note.

If there were ever a place for the Mets to revive their offense, the hitter-friendly Citizens Bank Park is the perfect place. The Mets have only scored more than four runs in just three games this season and are dead last in MLB in runs scored. They hit a new low in the two-game series against the Boston Red Sox with just nine hits and one run. Their only bright spot has been their pitching staff with a 3.05 ERA, the fourth-lowest in baseball. If the bats ever wake up, they will immediately become a very dangerous team.

The Phillies have cooled off after their hot start to the season and come off a split in a four-game series against the St. Louis Cardinals. Their bullpen has regressed to the 2020 form with their ERA at 4.62 and has allowed 14 home runs. They also lead MLB in the most walk-off losses. Bryce Harper and J.T. Realmuto are the offensive leaders, but there has been little help elsewhere. Rhys Hoskins is 13-for-65 (.200) over the last 16 games, but six of those hits have been homers. Jean Segura is also in the IL with a Quad injury.

Pitching Matchup

Marcus Stroman looks to rebound from his first tough outing of the young season. He only lasted four innings against the Washington Nationals, allowing five runs (four earned) on eight hits which were all singles. In 12 innings against the Phillies this season, Stroman has allowed just one run and held them to a .171 batting average.

Chase Anderson is also hoping to bounce back from a rough start against the Colorado Rockies. In just 3.2 innings, he allowed six runs on the same amount of hits and inflated his ERA to 6.48. Anderson has very similar lines in his two prior starts against the Mets this year, allowing four runs in nine innings. His first start against the Mets was his longest so far, but he only pitched five innings.

Matchups To Lookout For

Marcus Stroman vs. Matt Joyce: 5-for-15 (.333), Double, Home Run, 5 Walks, 3 Strikeouts

Marcus Stroman vs. J.T. Realmuto: 5-for-10 (.500), Walk, Strikeout

Chase Anderson vs. Dominic Smith: 2-for-5 (.400), 2 Home Runs, Walk, 2 Strikeouts

Chase Anderson vs. Michael Conforto: 3-for-17 (.176), 3 Home Runs, 2 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

Villar Caps Off Comeback With Walk-Off Single in 4-3 Victory

The New York Mets sleepwalking offense desperately needed something to wake themselves up, and they finally found it their 4-3 walk-off win. It looked like the Mets would play in another miserable doubleheader after the Philadelphia Phillies took the lead in the top half of the inning, but there was no quit in them. Against closer Hector Neris, Pete Alonso led off the eighth with a lined single to tie the game, and Jonathan Villar‘s bases-loaded single brought the Mets back to .500.

The eighth inning started ugly as Trevor May ran into tough luck. James McCann‘s passed ball led to runners on second and third, then Didi Gregorious’s squib single allowed the Phillies to take a 3-2 lead. Miguel Castro suffered a similar fate when he allowed an infield single to Jean Segura, which allowed the Phillies to tie the game in the sixth inning. Both May and Castro were dominant in their outings and are proving to be their best relievers early in the season.

Sky WalKKKKKKKKer

Taijuan Walker had the strikeout pitch working as he recorded eight in 4.1 innings pitched. Due to the urgency of a seven-inning game, manager Luis Rojas opted not to stretch him out. Walker continued to show a fastball in the mid-90s, and he featured a slider which became his best secondary pitch.

Dominic Smith also made an impact both with the bat and with his mouth. His 2-run home run provided all the offense against Phillies starter Chase Anderson. It was his second one off of Anderson this season, except this one came on a fastball that was actually in the strike zone. When Jose Alvarado threw two consecutive up and in pitches to Michael Conforto, the latter drilling him on the hand, Smith was vocal toward Alvarado to cut it out. No altercation resulted from it, but it was clear that Smith was not happy with Alvarado’s lack of control at 99-100 mph.

Game two of the doubleheader will begin at 8:05 p.m. and features a good pitching matchup. Marcus Stroman faces Aaron Nola in the nightcap.

Mets Game Preview (4/12/21): 7:10 p.m. vs. Philadelphia Phillies (6-3)

The New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies hope to play the first game of a four-game series at Citi Field if the weather holds up. Each team comes off of Sunday’s games riddled with controversy. The Mets wasted Marcus Stroman‘s start by forcing a game in the rain and the Phillies stole a win off a controversial call in the ninth inning against the Atlanta Braves.

The Mets split their two games against the Miami Marlins but should have taken both easily. Their offense has started slow out of the gates and they were lucky to even take the first game of the series. Jeff McNeil’s game-tying home run tied it in the ninth inning and Michael Conforto‘s elbow won it with an awkward hit by pitch. In game 2, the Mets were shutout and wasted Jacob deGrom’s 14-strikeout effort.

The Phillies are rolling on all cylinders to start their season. Their 6-3 record puts them in first place in the NL East but they lost two of three games to the Atlanta Braves over the weekend. J.T. Realmuto and Rhys Hoskins are the team’s leading hitters with .333 and .306 batting averages. Jose Alvarado, Hector Neris, and Connor Brogdon are the three anchors leading their bullpen. They have allowed just one run in 14.1 combined innings pitched.

Pitching Matchups

David Peterson looks to rebound from his first outing against the Phillies where he allowed six runs in four innings. It started ugly for Peterson as Alec Bohm (solo) and Rhys Hoskins (three-run) tagged him for home runs in the first inning. There is no doubt there will be an emphasis on keeping Hoskins in check this time out.

Chase Anderson makes his second start again the Mets and did a terrific job of battling the first time. He only pitched five innings and struck out three but held the offense just to one run. Anderson is notorious for allowing home runs but only allowed one to Dominic Smith on a ball that was at his shoulders.

Matchups To Lookout For

Chase Anderson vs. Michael Conforto: 3-for-15 (.200), 3 Home Runs, 2 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

David Peterson vs. Rhys Hoskins: 4-for-5 (.800), 2 Doubles, 2 Home Runs, Strikeout

Mets Cannot Recover From Peterson’s First Inning in 8-2 Loss to Phillies

Simeon Woods-Richardson

David Peterson‘s first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies symbolized the New York Mets issues during their opening series. Flat, rusty, and a step slow as the Phillies tagged Peterson for four runs to put the Mets in an early first-inning hole. Rhys Hoskins‘s solo home run and Alec Bohm‘s three-run homer gave them a 4-0 lead they never looked back from in their 8-2 victory.

Peterson bookended three shutout innings with ugly first and fifth innings. Hoskins got to Peterson again with a double in the fifth, and Bryce Harper‘s drag bunt gave the Phillies a first and third situation. Peterson left the game, and Jacob Barnes made his Mets debut in relief but gave the Mets little help. J.T. Realmuto swatted Barnes’s first pitch over the right field fence to put the game out of reach at 7-1.

Wasted Opportunities

The Mets offense made Phillies ace Aaron Nola worked extremely hard through his four innings of work. Nola worked around eight baserunners to hold the Mets to one run on 92 pitches. The ability to get runners on base but failure to score them was the story of their game. They recorded 11 hits but left 14 runners on base and went 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position. Combine all those factors, and you get their two-run effort. Michael Conforto struggled the most in his 0-for-5 day with two strikeouts and nine left on base.

The silver lining from the game is Joey Lucchesi‘s two innings to finish off the loss. Lucchesi struck out two and only allowed one hit as he tries to keep himself ready for a start next week. Jonathan Villar also finished a home run shy of the cycle.

A 1-2 start to year always stings, but a full 162 game season allows plenty of time to rebound from a rough start. The Mets return to Citi Field for their home opener, with Taijuan Walker making his Mets debut. They will face the Miami Marlins, who have not announced a starter yet due to the current injuries in their rotation. The first pitch from Queens is at 1:05 p.m.

Mets Game Preview (4/7/21): 4:05 p.m. @ Philadelphia Phillies (4-1)

New York Mets, David Peterson

The New York Mets look to take the rubber game of their opening series against the Philadelphia Phillies. After a lackluster performance in game one, the offense led the way with an eight-run performance in the second game. They will have their work cut out for themselves against Phillies ace Aaron Nola.

The Mets will be shorthanded while J.D. Davis rests his injured hand that was struck by a pitch in Tuesday’s game. Luis Guillorme will take his place at third base. Jonathan Villar makes his first start of the season as he bats sixth and plays second base, giving Jeff McNeil a day off. James McCann remains in the lineup for a day game after a night game instead of receiving the usual day off.

The Phillies turn back to their usual top of the order, with Andrew McCutchen and Rhys Hoskins batting first and second. Didi Gregorius and Adam Haseley are the lone left-handed hitters in the lineup against David Peterson. No one in their lineup has faced Peterson more than twice in their career.

Pitching Matchups

David Peterson makes his first start of the season as he looks to build on a strong rookie season. Peterson was solid in the spring with a 3.75 ERA in 12 innings pitched but only struck out three. In 2019, he had a double-digit strikeout game but also had outings with only one strikeout. The jury is still out on the type of pitcher Peterson is at the big league level.

Aaron Nola takes the mound for the Phillies was as good as advertised on Opening Day against the Atlanta Braves. He threw 6.2 innings, but Pablo Sandoval’s two-run pinch-hit home run put a damper on his stellar outing. Nola features a fastball in the 92-94 range and backs it up with a changeup and knee-buckling curveball. Like with most aces, the Mets need to get to him early before he settles in.

Matchups To Lookout For

Aaron Nola vs. Michael Conforto: 7-for-37 (.189), 3 Doubles, Home Run, 5 Walks, 14 Strikeouts

Aaron Nola vs. Brandon Nimmo: 4-for-21 (.190), 9 Walks, 9 Strikeouts

Mets Patience At The Plate Leads To Their First Win of the Season, 8-4

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Marcus Stroman

The New York Mets lineup is built with dangerous hitters, and their terrific approaches at the plate gave them an 8-4 victory. Marcus Stroman led the Mets with six strong innings, allowing just one run and three hits to hand the Philadelphia Phillies their first loss of the season. Stroman only struck out three but stayed true to his craft with 13 ground ball outs.

Chase Anderson held his own against the menacing Mets hitters. He gave the Phillies five strong innings with a Dominic Smith two-run home run as the only blemish on his outing. The homer was no fault of his own because Smith swung at a ball by his shoulders but still managed to lose it to the opposite field. Vince Velasquez was the first reliever for the Phillies and had a “Jekyll and Hyde” outing. He struck out the 3-4-5 hitters in order in the sixth but was a completely different pitcher in the seventh.

Velasquez walked four batters, three in a row at one point, which eased the Mets into a 3-1 lead. Francisco Lindor picked up his first Mets RBI with a sacrifice fly followed by a first and third double steal, allowing the Mets to score their fifth run. The double steal easily could have been marked as an error on Didi Gregorius, who muffed a catchable throw at second base. Michael Conforto finished off the four-run inning with an RBI double. Pete Alonso put the finishing touches on the win by muscling a 2-run home run over the left field fence in the ninth inning.

Bullpen Woes

A five-run lead would have been an opportune time for Manager Luis Rojas to give Dellin Betances or Jeurys Familia some low leverage work, but he opted for Miguel Castro again. Castro bent but did not break after allowing three straight two-out hits and a run. He got Bryce Harper to fly out on a solid play by center fielder Brandon Nimmo to escape the jam.

Trevor May pitched into another jam in the eighth but struck out Brad Miller and Roman Quinn to slither out of a first and second situation. Jeurys Familia finally got some action with a six-run lead in the ninth and had tough luck on two weak hits and an error resulting in two unearned runs. Despite the issues, Familia got through the inning and completed the first win of the season.

The Mets defense compiled another two errors to push their count to three in the early season. Overall, the defense has been much better than last season, but they still have more work to join the upper class in the NL. The Mets’ eight walks were vital as the offense only mustered five hits. Four of those hits resulted in extra bases; two doubles and two home runs.

J.D. Davis also left the game in the second inning after getting drilled in the hand with a pitch. X-Rays came back negative and his status is day-to-day at the moment. On Wednesday, both teams play the rubber game of their series as the Mets send David Peterson to the mound against Aaron Nola. The first pitch is at 4:05 p.m. ET from Citizens Bank Park.

 

 

Mets Game Preview (4/6/21): 7:05 p.m. @ Philadelphia Phillies (4-0)

New York Yankees, New York Mets, Marcus Stroman

The New York Mets hope to rebound after a disappointing Opening Day collapse in the eighth inning on Monday. They will play game two of their three-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies. The Phillies have asserted themselves as an underrated contender for the NL East crown after winning four straight to start the season. All four wins have come against the preseason front runners, three against the Braves and one versus the Mets.

Brandon Nimmo rightly returns to the leadoff spot with a right-handed pitcher on the mound. He plays center field while Dominic Smith makes his first start of the season in left field. The rest of the lineup is what we expect to see for the majority of the season.

The Phillies tweaked their lineup by adding the very selective Matt Joyce to the top of the order. Alec Bohm also moves up to the second spot in the order to replace Rhys Hoskins. He gets a surprising night off after a solid start to the season; Brad Miller will play first place in his place.

The Phillies bullpen has done a complete 180 from their 2020 performance. Over the first four games of the season, they combined to allow just one run. Jose Alvarado and Hector Neris combined to allow just one run in six innings while striking out 12 batters. In Monday’s game, the bullpen pitched 5.2 innings, allowing one run and struck out seven.

Pitching Matchups

Marcus Stroman makes his first start since the 2019 season after he opted out in 2020. Stroman had a 3.44 ERA with 17 strikeouts in 18.1 spring training innings. Of course, Stroman features the hard sinker, a cutter, slider, and the new split changeup that he debuted during the spring. Stroman has to fill the role of the second starter behind deGrom with Carlos Carrasco injured.

Chase Anderson makes his Phillies debut after spending 2020 with the Toronto Blue Jays. In the spring, Anderson had a 3.07 ERA with 15 strikeouts in 14 innings pitched. Anderson features a 4-seam fastball, changeup, cutter, curveball, and an occasional sinker. Over his career, left-handed hitters hit just .223/.297/.388 against Anderson.

Matchups To Lookout For

Marcus Stroman vs. Matt Joyce: 4-for-11 (.364), Double, Home Run, 3 Walks, 3 Strikeouts

Marcus Stroman vs. Brad Miller: 7-for-32 (.219), Double, Triple, Home Run, 4 Walks, 9 Strikeouts

Chase Anderson vs. Michael Conforto: 3-for-13 (.231), 3 Home Runs, 2 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

Chase Anderson vs. Brandon Nimmo: 3-for-6 (.500), Double, Home Run, Walk, 3 Strikeouts