MLB: New York Mets at Miami Marlins

Game Recap July 23: deGrom Exits With Velocity

Executive Summary

Jacob deGrom couldn’t complete the fourth inning against Miami ace Jose Fernandez—Marlins 7, Mets 2.

Discussion and Analysis

We don’t give Giancarlo Stanton enough credit. He should be discussed alongside Aroldis Chapman as a new breed of ballplayer, one who’s performing at a level nobody’s seen before. Chapman gets headlines for throwing harder than anyone because pitch velocity has been tracked as long as scouts have used radar guns. We’ve learned over the years that an 80 fastball is one thrown with upper-90s pace, and that a 100 mph is nearly off the scouting scale. As Statcast becomes ubiquitous, fans will come to understand that the equivalent of a 103-mph Chapman fastball is a ball hit with a 115 mph exit velocity.

Jacob deGrom hung a slider to Stanton in the bottom of the third. The result was what you’d expect: A 441-foot blast over the fence, over the bullpen, over the walkway and nearly over the video scoreboard. Per Statcast, Stanton’s dinger was hit with an exit velocity of 115 mph. For context (prior to the game):

Stanton hit a bullet of a line-drive single in the first inning, that monstrous home run in the third, and an RBI-single through the right side of the infield in the fourth, when deGrom wouldn’t come back inside to him. Stanton didn’t singlehandedly defeat deGrom, but it was close. deGrom lasted just 3 2/3 innings, going 94 pitches, allowing 10 hits, and leaving with his team down 4-2. It was the second-shortest start of deGrom’s career. For good measure, Stanton led off the sixth inning with another hit. It was his first four-hit game since 2012.

Marlins pitching scattered 13 baserunners while allowing just two runs. The Mets left the bases loaded in both the fifth and eighth innings, as their offensive woes continue. Neil Walker has now been dropped to sixth in the batting order. Since June 1, he’s hit just .196/.283/.275 — not counting his 0-for-4 last night. Walker also booted a double-play grounder that would have ended the seventh inning. The error (incomprehensibly labeled a hit by the official scorer) prolonged the inning and allowed the Marlins to score their seventh run of the game. Asdrubal Cabrera, who also went 0-for-4, is in a high-leverage slump: He’s zero for his last 31 with runners in scoring position. The Mets’ double-play combo has chosen an inopportune time to stop hitting.

Terry Collins decided that this blowout was a good time to dump Michael Conforto in center field for the first time in his career. Let’s not mince words: There is no good time to do this except in an emergency. Conforto has never been Carl Crawford or Brett Gardner, left fielders who have the speed and athleticism to play center. In so many ways, Conforto is the Mets’ Kyle Schwarber, a college hitting prodigy whose bat forced its way to the majors well before anyone expected. The Cubs stuck Schwarber in left field to start the season; less than a week passed before Schwarber tore his ACL in an outfield collision. With Yoenis Cespedes likely to opt out at year’s end and Curtis Granderson a free agent after 2017, the Mets can’t afford to fool around with the team’s future offensive cornerstone.

Contemporaneous Thoughts


“deGrom is coming off the statistically-best performance of his major-league career, a complete game one-hitter, the first time he’d ever thrown a pitch in the ninth inning.” — Gary (This is true! deGrom’s July 17, 2016 shutout earned a career-best 91 Game Score, the same as his May 21, 2015 8-inning, 11 strikeout, one-hit start against the Cardinals.)

“Stanton will fish. You don’t have to throw him a strike.” — Keith, unintentionally

“The Marlins wound up taking Fernandez with the 14th overall pick in the 2011 draft. One pick after, the Mets took Brandon Nimmo.” — Gary


Take solace in tomorrow’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony, when Mike Piazza will become the second player to go in wearing a Mets cap. The third-place Mets need something else to look forward to.

Photo Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Related Articles

Leave a comment

Use your Baseball Prospectus username