New York Mets: Four Run Ninth Inning Catapults 10-6 Win

The final game of the series for the New York Mets against the Philadelphia Phillies was all about surviving and advancing to the next game. Their starting pitcher did not make it out of the second inning, seven combined runs were scored in the first inning, and two pitchers had to throw on their third consecutive day. Despite all of it, the Mets lived to steal a 10-6 victory from the Phillies.

The Mets immediately got a lead for Seth Lugo in the first inning. Dominic Smith‘s RBI double followed by Robinson Cano‘s two-run single gave the Mets an early 3-0 lead. After Lugo struck out the first batter he faced, it was clear he had nothing on the mound.

He allowed back-to-back-to-back home runs to give back the lead as quickly as the Mets got it. After allowing a Jean Segura triple, Adam Haseley drove him in to give the Phillies a 4-3 first-inning lead. Lugo allowed another two runs in the second inning and had to be replaced with Erasmo Ramirez.

Uphill Battle

The Mets bullpen gave them everything they needed and more for the second straight night. Ramirez started with 2.1 shutout innings, Chasen Shreve followed with another 2.1 scoreless innings. During that period, a Pete Alonso solo homer and Brandon Nimmo‘s two-run triple got the Mets even with the Phillies in the sixth.

After Jeurys Familia got through the seventh, he ran into trouble in the eighth. Justin Wilson came in for a third straight game an showed the ill-effects of all the work. Wilson could not locate anything and walked the first two batters he faced to load the bases. Luckily he found the strike zone on one pitch to get Didi Gregorius to pop out and survive the eighth.

The Mets offense came alive in the ninth inning. Nimmo led off the ninth with a home run, Smith had an RBI triple, and Cano capped it off with a two-run home run. Things did not come easy for Edwin Diaz in the bottom of the ninth. He was also in for the third straight day but worked around three walks, getting the Mets a big win.

On Friday, the Mets begin a three-game weekend series against the Atlanta Braves. Steven Matz makes his return to the rotation and faces Cy Young candidate Max Fried. The first pitch from Citi Field is at 7:10 p.m. ET.

New York Mets: deGrom Exits Early, Gimenez Gets Big Hit in 5-4 Win

New York Mets, Andres Gimenez

Wednesday night’s matchup between the New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies featured a matchup of two longtime teammates. Jacob deGrom and Zack Wheeler faced each other for the first time, but Wheeler lasted a lot longer than back-to-back Cy Young winner did. For the Mets, if they wanted any hope at a postseason birth, they needed a victory.

From the beginning, it set up like another disappointing Mets loss. They went down 4-0 early, deGrom only lasted two innings, and their offense struggled against Wheeler. The Mets overcame all of that to pick up a huge 5-4 victory to move within 1.5 games of the Phillies. 

From the second pitch of the game, it was evident deGrom was dealing with some issue. deGrom sent glares towards the dugout, trying to let them know something was not right. After giving up three runs in the second, he did not make it back out for the third. deGrom left the game with right hamstring spasms and was visibly frustrated in the dugout.

Wacha to the Rescue

Michael Wacha gave the Mets everything they could have asked for when called into long relief duty. He gave the Mets four innings and held the Phillies to one run and kept the Mets in the game. Wacha worked around some trouble, allowing five hits, but his performance cannot go overlooked.

The comeback started with a simple Robinson Cano ground out, making it a 4-1 game. J.D. Davis made it a 4-3 game with a two-run opposite-field off Wheeler. As the game move into the late innings, Davis left his mark on this game.

With Michael Conforto on first base, his double tied the game in the eighth inning. The ball hung in the air forever, and it just made it over the glove of the leaping Adam Haseley. Conforto also had no clue on the number of outs, which made the play at the plate closer than it should have been.

Clutch Bullpen

In the bottom half of the eighth, Miguel Castro stranded runners on first and second with back to back strikeouts to move the game to the ninth inning. The Phillies made a couple of mistakes in the ninth inning to benefit the Mets. With a runner on first, Hector Neris balked to move the runner to second base.

They decided to intentionally walk Jeff McNeil to set up Andres Gimenez in his biggest spot with the Mets. The rookie came through to line a single to center field, giving the Mets a 5-4 lead. Edwin Diaz worked around a base hit to strike out three batters and pick up his biggest save of the season.

The Mets send Seth Lugo to the mound for the rubber game of this three-game series. Aaron Nola opposes him at Citizens Bank Park for the 7:05 p.m. ET start.

 

New York Mets Series Preview: Philadelphia Phillies (9/15-9/17)

New York Mets, Luis Rojas

The last New York Mets series preview against the Philadelphia Phillies, at the time, was the most important series of the season. This three-game series has the same importance times ten as there are only two weeks left in the season. The Mets are 2.5 games behind the Phillies for the first wild card spot and two games behind the San Francisco Giants for the second spot.

Probable Pitching Matchups

Tuesday, (9/15) @ 7:05 p.m. ET: Rick Porcello (1-4, 6.07 ERA) vs. Jake Arrieta (3-4, 5.54 ERA)

Wednesday, (9/16) @ 7:05 p.m. ET: Jacob deGrom (4-1, 1.67 ERA) vs. TBD

Thursday, (9/17) @ 7:05 p.m. ET: Seth Lugo (2-3, 2.63 ERA) vs. TBD

Over the last 24 hours, you cannot talk about the Mets without the fantastic news of Steve Cohen signing an agreement to own 95% of the franchise. If the Mets do not make the playoffs, at least knowing Cohen is all but certain to own the team alleviates the pain.

Win or Go Home

The first game should get the same treatment a game seven would. Rick Porcello has struggled to find consistency all season and must have a short leash in game one. With Jacob deGrom and Seth Lugo following Porcello, it gives the Mets the best chance to win no matter who they face. Most likely, they will face Aaron Nola at some point in the series as well.

Beating Jake Arrieta is no easy task. He compiled two solid starts in a row, with the first coming against the Mets. As always, the ultimate goal is getting to the bullpen early in the game. It is a major Achilles heel for the Phillies, and Arrieta throws a lot of pitches early in the game, which helps the Mets cause.

With all the disappointment flooding the Mets season, they still have an opportunity to erase that during this series. Winning two is a must; three is a dream, and anything less spells the end of their season. The Phillies are the last opponent they play, which allows them to move up in the wild card hunt with victories automatically.

Stats to Lookout For

Rick Porcello vs. Didi Gregorious: 7-for-43 (.163), 2 Doubles, 2 Home Runs, 3 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Jake Arrieta vs. Robinson Cano: 6-for-34 (.176), 2 Doubles, 4 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Jake Arrieta vs. Jeff McNeil: 13-for-23 (.565), Double, Home Run, Strikeout

Jacob deGrom vs. Bryce Harper: 11-for-36 (.306), 2 Doubles, 2 Home Runs, 8 Walks, 12 Strikeouts

New York Mets: Segura Haunts the Mets Again in 9-8 Loss

New York Mets, David Peterson

The New York Mets made a miraculous comeback from 6-0 against the Philadelphia Phillies to earn a 7-6 lead. Unfortunately, they could not keep the lead, and a Jean Segura two-run home run in the tenth inning spoiled a must-win game for the Mets.

Miguel Castro continued to make general manager Brodie Van Wagenen look like a clueless mess. His prized acquisition gave up the home run to Segura, and it was confusing for Castro to be in the game. Edwin Diaz threw a 1-2-3 ninth inning on only 12 pitches, but manager Luis Rojas opted to go with Castro instead.

Ramirez Saves Bullpen

David Peterson struggled through two innings and allowed five runs. He needed 70 pitches to get through the start and had no command of anything he was throwing. Peterson’s shaky control has shown during his previous starts, but this was his worst.

Erasmo Ramirez made his Mets debut in long relief of Peterson. He gave the Mets a fighting chance and saved the bullpen by throwing five innings and his only run coming off a J.T. Realmuto home run. Ramirez only needed 54 pitches, and the outing certainly gives the Mets another starting rotation option.

Offense Clicks Again

The Mets offense did all they could after Zack Wheeler shut them down in the first four innings. They bunched together three runs in the fifth coming on RBI doubles from Michael Conforto, J.D. Davis, and Dominic Smith. When Wheeler surprisingly came out after six innings and 84 pitches, the Mets jumped all over the Phillies bullpen in a four-run seventh.

A Didi Gregorius error got the Mets within two runs at 6-4 and allowed the Jeff McNeil to bat with two runners on base. McNeil channeled his power for the second consecutive game as his three-run home run gave the Mets a 7-6 lead and completed their comeback. The lead did not stick as Jeurys Familia gave up the lead in the following half-inning.

Despite the loss, the Mets showed their resiliency once again. After scoring a run in the 10th with a Brandon Nimmo single, J.D. Davis came within five feet of a walk-off home run. They split the four-game series with the Phillies, but they played great baseball for the final three games.

Andres Gimenez also continued to shine on both sides of the game. He recorded two more hits and played sparkling defense at shortstop. With a lefty on the mound for their first game against the Baltimore Orioles, it will be interesting to see if Luis Rojas continues to run Gimenez out there.

That lefty for the O’s is John Means, and for the Mets, they send the struggling Michael Wacha. The first pitch from Citi Field is at 7:10 p.m. ET.

 

New York Mets: Lugo’s Best Start of the Season Gives Mets a 5-1 Win

The New York Mets needed Seth Lugo to pitch as long as he could, and it was exactly what he did. Lugo gave the Mets five strong innings, holding the Phillies to one run and throwing a season-high 81 pitches. The Mets offense came together to give them a relaxing 5-1 victory.

The command that Lugo lacked with his fastball he made up for with his curveball. It helped him record eight strikeouts and keep the Phillies to four hits. Their only run came off a Rhys Hoskins home run on a fastball in the first inning. Lugo recording the win was the first Mets starter to earn a W in 19 games.

Team Effort On Offense

Six different Mets recorded hits and half of them had multiple-hit games. Michael Conforto made use of the opposite field for two hits, including an RBI single. Jeff McNeil did not have an RBI but had a double to continue his hot hitting.

Andres Gimenez was the best player for the Mets on both sides of the ball. He had four productive plate appearances. Two hits, a walk, and a sacrifice fly that was a gift from the Phillies defense as Bryce Harper’s laziness forced a backpedaling Neil Walker to make the catch.

The strong play on offense and defense is showing why he should play more than Amed Rosario. With the Mets needing every single victory they can get, Gimenez will likely continue to play as Luis Rojas rides the hot hand.

The struggling Mets bullpen also hurled four shutout innings and recorded five strikeouts. The entire staff also held the Phillies to 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position and stranded 10 Phillies on base.

Sunday afternoon’s matchup is a battle of the aces as Jacob deGrom faces Aaron Nola at a 1:10 p.m. ET start from Citi Field.

New York Mets: Late Mistakes Costly in 5-3 Loss to Phillies

The New York Mets finally got a good outing out of a starting pitcher but it could not mask the fatigue of the bullpen. One run allowed in the seventh and two in the eighth gave the Phillies bullpen enough wiggle room after Jake Arrieta pitched seven strong innings in the Mets 5-3 loss.

Manager Luis Rojas tried to push Jared Hughes through another outing but it did not work out. Over 1.1 innings he allowed three runs, four hits, and walked two. A two-out double led to a Roman Quinn RBI single to give the Phillies a 3-2 lead.

In the eighth, Rhys Hoskins’s leadoff walk and a Didi Gregorius single set the table again for the Phillies. The inept Mets defense showed again when J.D. Davis made a poor throw to Dominic Smith on a Jean Segura infield single. The error gave the Phillies a 4-2 lead and an Adam Haseley hit by pitch by Brad Brach made it a 5-2 game.

Arrieta Flashback

Arrieta had an ERA above six heading to his start, but he did not show it against the Mets. He held the Mets to two runs over seven innings and also struck out seven. The two runs came on a Michael Conforto two-run home run in the fifth.

The Mets had an opportunity to tie the game in the eighth. Smith made it a 5-3 game with an RBI single and gave Robinson Cano and Pete Alonso opportunities to hit with runners on first and second with one out.

Cano’s hit a line drive that Hoskins snagged with a dive, preventing it from becoming an extra-base hit. It effectively killed the momentum the Mets had in the eighth. Alonso got to a 3-2 count but popped up a slider from Tommy Hunter to end the rally and continue his hitting struggles with runners in scoring position.

Rick Porcello had a strong start going six innings, allowing three hits, two runs and struck out six. He retired the last 12 batters he faced and gave the Mets exactly what they needed out of him. The Mets did not help themselves out by going 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position and leaving six on base.

The Mets try to get back into the win column on Saturday by sending Seth Lugo to make the start. He faces Spencer Howard at 7:10 p.m. ET from Citi Field.

New York Mets Series Preview: Philadelphia Phillies (9/4-9/7)

New York Mets, Rick Porcello

After two straight victories, the New York Mets welcome in the red hot Philadelphia Phillies for a four-game weekend series. It is the biggest series of the season for the Mets, and it is against a team that swept them in their prior matchup in the abbreviated 2020 season.

Probable Pitching Matchups

Friday, (9/4) @ 7:10 p.m. ET: Jake Arrieta (2-4, 6.49 ERA) vs. Rick Porcello (1-4, 6.00 ERA)

Saturday, (9/5) @ 7:10 p.m. ET: Spencer Howard (1-1, 5.40 ERA) vs. Seth Lugo (1-2, 2.12 ERA)

Sunday, (9/6) @ 1:10 p.m. ET: Aaron Nola (4-2, 2.45 ERA) vs. Jacob deGrom (2-1, 1.76 ERA)

Monday, (9/7) @ 1:10 p.m. ET: Zack Wheeler (4-0, 2.20 ERA) vs. TBD

The Mets come into the series just 1.5 games out of a wild card spot. With the constant failures throughout the pitching staff, they have to feel lucky to have an opportunity to make the postseason. The Phillies have won nine of their last ten, which allowed them to surge up into one of the spots the Mets are trying to chase.

Need Innings?

The only way the Mets can maintain success is with a rested bullpen due to their starters going deep into games. Rick Porcello has thrown the second-highest amount of innings, but they have not resulted in success. He has a 6.00 ERA and needs to set the tone with a good start to open the series.

Seth Lugo hopes to get into the fifth inning for the first time this season. He is almost stretched out fully as a starter and has not skipped a beat since returning to the rotation. One more strong start from Lugo, and we could see his ERA drop below two.

Sunday afternoon’s matchup features two premiere aces. Jacob deGrom against Aaron Nola sets up to be a low scoring contest. Both pitchers have previous strong outings against their opponents throughout their careers. Let us not forget that deGrom also pitches his best during day games.

Zack Wheeler also closes out the series, making his first start as an opponent at Citi Field. He won 19 games and had a 4.15 ERA over 60 career starts at Citi Field.

After homering in two consecutive games, Pete Alonso looks to start a hot streak that carries through the rest of the season. Out of all the bats in the Mets lineup, he holds the most weight when he is hitting consistently.

Matchups to Lookout For

Jake Arrieta vs. Robinson Cano: 6-for-31 (.194), 2 Doubles, 4 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Jake Arrieta vs. Jeff McNeil: 13-for-20 (.650), Double, Home Run

Rick Porcello vs. Didi Gregorious: 7-for-40 (.175), 2 Doubles, 2 Home Runs, 3 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Jacob deGrom vs. J.T. Realmuto: 4-for-25 (.160), Double, 9 Strikeouts

Aaron Nola vs. Michael Conforto: 5-for-32 (.156), Double, Home Run, 4 Walks, 12 Strikeouts

MLB examines the possibility of Phillies and Marlins quarantining for an undetermined period of time

A total of 15 players of the Miami Marlins’ 30-man active roster tested positive for COVID-19, which is among the worst-case scenarios for MLB and the 2020 season. The Marlins played against the Phillies over the weekend, and while the latter is finishing up tests, the New York Yankees won’t be facing them tonight.

The situation is slowly getting out of control, and MLB is currently discussing several scenarios that would allow them to continue with the season but also preserving the health of the players and the other teams.

According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, one of the possibles paths that MLB could take given the situation is having both the Marlins and the Phillies quarantining for an undetermined period of time.

MLB needs to be flexible if it wants to complete season

The idea would be to ensure that most of the players that tested positive can get back into the field as soon as possible (with the proper two negative tests separated by at least 24 hours,) thus avoiding the situation of Miami having to replace 15 players of their active roster with taxi squad members.

Because the Baltimore Orioles were supposed to play against the Marlins in Miami this week, and the Yankees were going to face the Phillies in Philadelphia, the Bombers would be going up against the O’s under this scenario, playing Wednesday and Thursday.

MLB would like the Phillies and Marlins to try and make up for the missed games later in the season, if possible. The league has indicated that despite its desire for every team to play 60 games, it needs to be flexible during the pandemic.

That’s why MLB will determine the playoff spots by winning percentage. The possibility of the coronavirus effectively ending the season remains, but for now, the league is trying to navigate the situation.

New York Yankees receive good news for Wednesday game against Baltimore

The New York Yankees have received good news this afternoon, as they are expected to play a two game series against the Baltimore Orioles beginning on Wednesday. The team was originally supposed to play the Phillies this week, but that was disrupted because of coronavirus.

Philadelphia played a series this past weekend against the Miami Marlins, who now have almost half their roster positive for coronavirus. Miami hid positive tests from the Phillies in order to conclude their three game series on Sunday.

Instead of telling the truth, Miami’s antics have affected the league. It’s led to four games postponed for the Yankees and Phillies, as the teams were supposed to play two in Philly before traveling to New York for two. No Phillies have tested positive and the Yankees are at no additional risk, just victim to Miami’s poor decision.

Miami has been shut down for at least a week, the league postponing all their games until then.

The MLB is trying to change the schedule to accommodate all teams and to play as many games as possible. They realize 60 games may not be possible for all teams, so some postseason spots and seeding could be based off of winning percentage instead of record.

Games will be made up if possible, and the expanded roster makes more makeup games likely. But due to the nature of this year’s schedule, not all games may be able to be made up. If a team only plays 57 games, the league could just call it good enough.

A makeup series against the Phillies could replace a series against the Orioles down the road for the Yankees. That way, teams will still only play their divisional rivals 10 times.

Zack Wheeler Signs With The Philadelphia Phillies

New York Mets, Zack Wheeler

Starting pitcher Zack Wheeler agreed to a five year, $118 million dollar contract with the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday. He choose the Phillies over teams like the New York Mets and the New York Yankees.

Wheeler, now 29, was drafted by the San Francisco Giants with the sixth overall pick in the 2009 amatuer draft. He was traded to the Mets in 2011 and made his debut in 2013.

Wheeler was solid in 2013 and 2014, before missing the next two seasons with a torn ulnar collateral ligament, and underwent Tommy John surgery.

He returned in 2017, and had an ERA of over five in his only poor season. In 2019, his ERA was almost four, throwing 195 innings. He was 11-8 and had a WAR of 4.1.

His career ERA is a nice 3.77 over 126 career starts.

Wheeler now goes to a Philadelphia team trying to make their first postseason since 2011. They have hired a new manager in former Yankee manager Joe Girardi, and are ready for a fresh start after two disappointing years with Gabe Kapler at the helm. Kapler now manages for the Giants.

It’s unfortunate that both the Mets and the Yankees missed out on the Wheeler sweepstakes. The Yankees were looking for a final piece to push them into the World Series, and the Mets were looking to keep their entire starting pitching core together to make it back into the Postseason.

It’s especially disappointing for the Mets. Their fans have undergone a lot of pain over the last few seasons, and the team was finally starting to show postseason potential.

The Mets may now have to join the Yankees in going all in for Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg.