New York Mets: Alonso Hits 45th Homer, Mets Rout Nationals 8-4

After yesterday’s catastrophic loss, the New York Mets bounced back today as they beat the Washington Nationals 8-4 to take the series. In his return, Robinson Cano went 3-3 and supplied two of those runs while Pete Alonso crushed his 45th home run of the season.

Winning pitcher Zach Wheeler went five full innings where he allowed one run on seven hits while fanning three. Anibal Sanchez for the Nationals struggles in his outing where he allowed seven runs through five full frames.

Juan Lagares, Pete Alonso, and Robinson Cano all homered in consecutive innings to give the Mets their runs. Amed Rosario Jeff McNeil also knocked in a few runs.

“That was a tough loss last night,” said Mets’ manager Mickey Callaway following the game. “They bounced back well. They came out swinging the bats. We did the job on the mound. That was a good win.”

The New York Mets improved their record to 71-68 and the Nationals fell to 78-60.

Pitcher Marcus Stroman was also pleased with his team’s performance where he showed it in a tweet:

Wilson Ramos went 0-4 on the day which ended his 26-game hitting streak. The streak was ended when the slow-running catcher was barely thrown out in the ninth inning. Ramos’ streak is tied for the second-longest in Mets history and was the longest in the majors since 2016.

After being swept in two straight series, the Mets have won their last two against the Phillies and the Nationals. They will begin another series with the Phillies on Friday with a three-game set.

New York Mets: The Biggest Home Series Since 2015

New York Mets, Noah Syndergaard

After a miraculous run to close within half a game of a wild card spot, the New York Mets start a very tough schedule. The Washington Nationals come into Citi Field for what is the most anticipated series since 2015, when they face these same Nationals.

How Did We Get Here?

The Mets pitching staff from top to bottom led the way throughout their hot stream. The hitting was hot and cold, but caught fire against the Miami Marlins. Their odds to make the playoffs were at single digits in July and now the odds are close to 50 percent.

The Mets seemed dead in the water and ready to sell at the trade deadline, but Brodie Van Wagenen had other plans. He added Marcus Stroman, traded Jason Vargas and kept the team in tact. The Mets took advantage of a relatively weak schedule, but the red hot Mets are no fluke.

Home Cooking Against the Nationals

The Mets swept the Nationals at home earlier this season and did the same during their magical 2015 run to move into first place in the NL East. Just like 2015 the Mets can pass the Nationals with a sweep, but their eyes are on the division not the wild card.

The Mets have Marcus Stroman, Noah Syndergaard and Jacob deGrom lined up to pitch. This give the Mets favorable matchups in all three games of the series. The Mets have been criticized for their weak schedule, but now they will truly be tested and they have the weapons to come out on top.

New York Mets Series Preview: Washington Nationals (8/24-8/26)

New York Mets, New York Yankees, Steven Matz

The New York Mets will take on the new look Washington Nationals for a three game weekend series. The Mets come off a split of a four game series against the San Francisco Giants, a series they could have very easily swept. The Nats took the first two games against the Philadelphia Phillies, but lost the series finale that was dominated by Aaron Nola. The season series is currently split 6-6.

Probable Pitching Matchups

(8/24, 7:10 PM) Gio Gonzalez (7-10, 4.51 ERA) vs. Jason Vargas (3-8, 7.67 ERA)

(8/25, 4:10 PM) Tanner Roark (8-12, 4.05 ERA) vs. Zack Wheeler (8-6, 3.63 ERA)

(8/26, 1:10 PM) Jefry Rodriguez (1-1, 5.46 ERA) vs. Steven Matz (5-10, 4.55 ERA)

McLovin, McNeil

Jeff McNeil has been the Mets best hitter over the last two weeks. Over the last seven games he has gone 14-26 and had a streak of eight consecutive at-bats with a hit. Overall, he is hitting .330 with a .495 slugging percentage and only 11 strikeouts in 108 plate appearances. McNeil currently has the highest contact rate in all of baseball which sits around the 50% mark. His hot start to his career makes him the top option at second base for now and hopefully the 2019 season.

Jason Vargas has managed to put together good consecutive starts for the first time this season. He threw six innings of two run ball against the Baltimore Orioles then followed that by allowing two runs in 5.1 innings against the Phillies. Vargas was signed to put together those types of starts. The Mets rotation becomes one of the best in the game when allowing two runs over five innings is something they consistently get out of their fifth starter.

Is the Nats Season Over?

The Nationals have been one of the biggest disappointments of this season. Many analysts had the Nats as their World Series champions. They have been extremely inconsistent all season which has kept them hovering around the .500 mark all season. A perfect example of their season was pulling out a win after being down to their final out against the Phillies then losing a pitchers duel to them the following day. They are eight games out of the NL East and 6.5 out of the wild card, with time quickly running out on their season.

As a result of their inconsistent play, they have dealt many of their important players. It started with trading Brandon Kintzler and releasing Shawn Kelly. They really started to give up on their season when they dealt Matt Adams and Daniel Murphy away. Bryce Harper was also claimed off of waivers by the Dodgers, but neither side could work out a deal. It would be surprising if the Nationals do not trade Harper because he is most likely moving on to a World Series contender in the offseason.

Matchups to Lookout For

Wilmer Flores vs. Gio Gonzalez: 6-28 (.214) Home Run, 3 Walks, 5 Strikeouts

Bryce Harper vs. Zack Wheeler: 5-24 (.208) Home Run, 2 Walks, 11 Strikeouts

Anthony Rendon vs. Zack Wheeler: 8-23 (.348) 4 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

Michael Conforto vs. Tanner Roark: 4-20 (.200) 2 Doubles, Home Run, 4 Walks, 6 Strikeouts

Interesting Stats

Ryan Zimmerman against Lefties in 2018: 22-55 (.400) 4 Doubles, 5 Home Runs, 9 Walks, 9 Strikeouts

Seth Lugo Pitching in the 7th inning in 2018: 15 Innings Pitched, 6 Hits, 18 Strikeouts

New York Mets Series Preview: Washington Nationals (7/30-7/31)

New York Mets, New York Yankees, Steven Matz

After splitting a four game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates and a day off, the New York Mets play a short two game series against the Washington Nationals. The Mets have been better in the second half as they have gone 5-4 since the All-Star break. The Nationals have struggled to get out of their own way and they currently sit at 52-53. The Mets have won six of the ten games against the Nats this season.

Probable Pitching Matchups

(7/30, 7:05 PM) Steven Matz (5-8, 3.79 ERA) vs. Tanner Roark (4-12, 4.55 ERA)

(7/31, 12:05 PM) TBD vs. Tommy Milone (0-0, 5.40 ERA)

Wheeler On The Move?

After news of the Mets holding on to Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler remains as the final big trade piece the team holds. Wheeler has molded into the great pitcher he was projected to be and will likely draw a lot in return. The Yankees, Phillies, Braves and Brewers have emerged as the top four landing spots for Wheeler. Jose Bautista and Devin Mesoraco are also possible players on the move, but trade talks have been quiet for them.

After Asdrubal Cabrera was shipped to the Phillies, Jeff McNeil has been handed a chance to show what he can do at the major league level. McNeil has gone 3-12 in his short big league stint so far but has a .500 on-base percentage. The second base position will be a revolving door for the rest of the season until someone starts to show they can hit at a consistent pace. Phil Evans and Jose Reyes will certainly get a fair shot to hold down the spot as well.

Capital Disaster

If the Mets and Baltimore Orioles hold the top two spots for the biggest mess of 2018, the Nationals are secure in the third spot. The superstars on the team do not hustle, there is fighting in the dugout and all the fingers are being pointed at rookie manager Dave Martinez. The clubhouse is controlled by the selfish and polarizing personalities of Bryce Harper and Trea Turner. Both players have incredible talent but it is clear Harper is looking past 2018 and both players put themselves ahead of their teammates.

The Nationals were predicted to be World Series champions at the beginning of the season but they have looked far from that all season. In a year full of disappointment, they have received a wonderful season from 19-year old rookie Juan Soto. Soto has bursted on to the seen putting up a slash line of .310/.418/.567 and will likely be the NL Rookie of the Year. He also gives the Nationals insurance if Harper decided to leave in the off season.

Matchups to Lookout For

Michael Conforto vs. Tanner Roark: 4-17 (.235) 2 Double, Home Run, 4 Walks, 5 Strikeouts

Michael Taylor vs. Steven Matz: 4-17 (.235) Home Run, 2 Walks, 7 Strikeouts

Trea Turner vs. Steven Matz: 2-16 (.125) Double, Walk, 2 Strikeouts

Wilmer Flores vs. Tanner Roark: 3-15 (.200) Doubles, 3 Strikeouts

Interesting Stats

Jose Bautista w/RISP in 2018: 13-40 (.325) 5 Doubles, 2 Home Runs, 13 Walks, 11 Strikeouts

Trea Turner vs. SP in his first time through the order in 2018: 18-93 (.194) 3 Doubles, 4 Home Runs, 8 Walks, 27 Strikeouts

New York Mets Series Preview: Washington Nationals (7/12-7/15)

The New York Mets welcome in the Washington Nationals for a four game series to close out the first half of the season. Both of these teams have been disappointing, many had the Nationals winning the World Series this season. The Nationals currently sit in third place, 5.5 games behind the first place Braves and Phillies. The Mets have taken four of the six games they have played against the Nationals this season.

Probable Pitching Matchups

(7/12, 7:10 PM) Max Scherzer (11-5, 2.31 ERA) vs. Steven Matz (4-6, 3.31 ERA)

(7/13, 7:10 PM) Tanner Roark (3-11, 4.76 ERA) vs. Noah Syndergaard (4-1, 3.06 ERA)

(7/14, 7:10 PM) TBD vs. Zack Wheeler (2-6, 4.42 ERA)

(7/15, 7:10 PM) Jeremy Hellickson (3-1, 3.47 ERA) vs. Corey Oswalt (0-2, 6.75 ERA)

deGrom Still Receiving No Support

The Mets continue to couple the bad combination of horrible offense and dominant starting pitching. Last night they once again failed to give Jacob deGrom a win after he threw eight shutout innings. Brandon Nimmo continued his breakout year by hitting a pinch-hit three run walk off homer in the tenth inning to give the Mets a win. The Mets are about 95/5 when it comes to whether they will be buyers or sellers at the trade deadline. If the Mets want to have a chance, they need to win a series. They have not done so in the last 15 series they have played.

Noah Syndergaard will finally make his return to the mound after about a month and a half on the sidelines. The Mets hope to have four starting pitchers they can rely on and they are going to need it if they are going to beat their rivals. These next couple starts for Syndergaard could end up being showcases for buyers at the trade deadline. The Mets have certainly made it know they will shop him for the right price, if it will make their team better in the future.

Rough Season For The Nats

The Nationals have surprised many by hovering around the .500 mark this season. Even with all of the home runs, Bryce Harper has struggled with the bat. He is only hitting .213 and has a mediocre 0.1 WAR. To put that in perspective Todd Frazier, Devin Mesoraco and Jose Bautista all have higher WARs than Harper. He is on pace to set a career high in walks, but he is also on pace to set a career high in strikeouts.

Max Scherzer is having another Cy Young quality season for the Nationals. He leads the NL in strikeouts and innings pitched, it would be the third straight season he leads the NL in strikeouts. 19-year old Juan Soto has come up to the big leagues and amazed everyone so far. Soto is hitting .304 with a 540 slugging and is already ahead of where Harper was when the Nationals brought him up at the age of 19.

Matchups to Lookout For

Asdrubal Cabrera vs. Max Scherzer: 14-61 (.230) 4 Doubles, Home Run, 3 Walks, 18 Strikeouts

Jose Bautista vs. Jeremy Hellickson: 12-35 (.343) Double, Triple, 3 Home Runs, 6 Walks, 6 Strikeouts

Anthony Rendon vs. Zack Wheeler: 7-20 (.350) 3 Walks, 4 Strikeouts

Bryce Harper vs. Zack Wheeler: 4-20 (.250) Home Run, 2 Walks, 9 Strikeouts

Interesting Stats

Matt Adams during night games in 2018: 34-107 (.318) 5 Doubles, 8 Home Runs, 10 Walks, 24 Strikeouts

Noah Syndergaard vs. #3 Hitter in the order in 2018: 5-27 (.185) 2 Doubles, 4 Walks, 9 Strikeouts