Just got back from my Sunday softball doubleheader. The Mets are losing 13-5. Guess I’m not watching today.
Final score of today’s game against the Nationals was 23-5. If I didn’t have to recap Monday’s game, I almost wouldn’t watch out of principle. Also, how has upper management not canned Ray Ramirez and the training staff at this point? Has anyone looked at the disabled list? Should be fun trying to win a pennant with their two best players missing extended periods of time.
Not only did the Nationals post 23 runs today, their Single-A affiliate did it too. Has the entire Mets organization ever scored 46 runs total in a day? Probably not.
12:45 a.m. – 9:50 a.m.:
A sliver of good news: Seth Lugo on track to throw a full bullpen session in two weeks and Wilmer Flores homered in his second rehab game. Getting either one of these two back would be huge to crawl out of this last place hole.
Paul Sewald is replacing Noah Syndergaard on the 25-man roster. Just what you wanted to see on a Monday.
Sandy Anderson said the organization is open to outside pitching options. Get on the phone! I’d prefer anyone to Rafael Montero in the starting rotation. Also, he copped the blame for allowing Syndergaard to bypass an MRI last week. Now we have to sit back and watch our ace sit out for weeks to months.
Post 1st inning, 1-1 (7:53 p.m.):
Michael Conforto led off the first with a home run over the center field fence. With the help of a nice jumping play by Brandon Phillips to rob Jay Bruce of a hit, Julio Teheran escaped without further damage. Taking the mound with a one-run lead, Robert Gsellman also surrendered a leadoff home run to Ender Inciarte.
Somebody stop that man! Conforto remains scorching hot adding another home run to his total on the day All-Star voting opened. It’s good for this team to get the jump on Teheran, as he owns a .193 batting average over the Mets current roster. Also interesting to see Inciarte homer. The speedy, defensive minded center fielder already has five home runs in 2017.
Post 2nd, 1-1 (8:06 p.m.):
Teheran worked a perfect second inning aided by a nice running grab by Inciarte off the bat of Jose Reyes. When the Braves came to bat, they faced the same fate, being retired 1-2-3 by Gsellman.
Reyes can’t catch a break. Robbed by a Gold Glove center fielder on one of his best hit balls all season into the right-center gap. Ironically, Inciarte received his Gold Glove for 2016 before the game. The Mets better not let Teheran get comfortable; in his last 7 appearances versus the Mets, he’s 4-0 with a 0.91 ERA.
Post 3rd, 1-1 (8:18 p.m.):
Teheran worked a clean fourth, getting subtle revenge by striking out Conforto to end the inning. Gsellman also continues to pitch effectively, getting through the third unscathed despite a two-out single to Inciarte.
I’m starting to worry. Teheran in a groove spells another day spent in last place. It’s good to see Gsellman regain some of his 2016 form early on this game. A pitchers duel is brewing here in Atlanta. Side note, the SNY camera team needs to get a handle on their surroundings in this new ball park.
Post 4th, 6-3 Mets (8:47 p.m.):
Ten Mets came to bat in the 4th, scoring five runs. Asdrubal Cabrera opened with a single off the wall in right. Jay Bruce doubled. Neil Walker singled to score Cabrera. Curtis Granderson walked. Bruce scored on a Reyes groundout. Teheran walked Travis d’Arnaud intentionally. T.J. Rivera singles to center field to score Walker. After a Gsellman lineout, Conforto plates two on a single to right. Teheran finally ended the madness with a Cabrera groundout.
The fourth inning held some fireworks for the Braves too. After Gsellman beaned Freddie Freeman, Matt Kemp launched a deep fly ball to center that hit off of the top of the center field fence. It was reviewed and confirmed as a double. Nick Markakis grounded out to score Freeman. Adonis Garcia followed with a single to score Kemp, but Gsellman escaped after inducing an inning-ending double play.
Wow. I couldn’t have asked for more. The Mets completely unraveled Teheran in the 4th. Teheran worked noticeably slower during this inning, very clearly being out of his rhythm. Tyler Flowers got burned once again by his habit of setting up behind the plate on throws home, which allowed d’Arnaud to sneak past a tag.
Gsellman was fortunate that his team posted five in the top half because he was not sharp in the bottom half. The Mets are still in front, but a depleted pitching staff needs a strong effort out of Gsellman to make it through tonight.
Post 5th, 6-3 Mets (9:09 p.m.):
Teheran rebounded well, getting through the fifth with only a walk to Walker and was aided by a stellar defensive play from Freddie Freeman to pick off a Reyes line drive. Things got a bit shaky in the bottom half for Gsellman after Teheran reached on an error and Inciarte walked. But the Mets caught a lucky break when a wild pitch rebounded nicely to d’Arnaud, causing Teheran to be caught in a rundown between second and third.
It’s interesting to see Teheran bat for himself there after giving up six runs, but Brian Snitker seems to have a lot of confidence in this right-hander. A lucky break saved Gsellman’s outing, as despite a low pitch count, the Mets still had the bullpen pumping as he worked himself into trouble.
Post 6th, 6-5 Mets (9:36 p.m.):
Rivera, d’Arnaud, and Gsellman were set down 1-2-3 in the sixth. With a pitch count of only 83, Teheran has a good shot at coming out for the seventh. Back-to-back doubles from Freeman and Kemp chased Gsellman in the bottom half of the inning. Nick Markakis plated Freeman after Josh Edgin got him to ground out. Terry Collins then brought in Hansel Robles to face Adonis Garcia, who scored Kemp on a sacrifice fly. Robles got himself into trouble after Flowers singled up the middle and Dansby Swanson walked, but Granderson made a sliding catch in center field off of pinch hitter Lane Adams to end the inning.
Seeing Teheran round back into form scares me, as the Met offense can be anemic at times. To make matters worse, Gsellman gave way to a bullpen that I have absolutely zero trust in after Sunday’s 23-5 debacle. Shout out to Bruce who made a subtle, yet important barehand play to save a run, but it was in vain as the run came across anyway. Nice to see Granderson also flash the leather since he’s had trouble doing anything with the bat. I am DEFINITELY not comfortable with a one-run lead after six.
Post 7th, 6-5 Mets (9:54 p.m.):
Julio Teheran’s night is done. Ian Krol replaces him in the seventh. Despite a walk to Cabrera, the Braves get out easy. Jerry Blevins pitches a 1-2-3 seventh, striking out Inciarte and Freeman.
Cabrera had possibly the slowest response to a pickoff snap throw I have ever seen. Get your head in the game, man. Nice to see a 1-2-3 inning on the Mets’ end. Jerry Blevins is always a reliable horse.
Post 8th, 7-5 Mets (10:14 p.m.):
Ian Krol returned in the eighth and, after cruising through Walker and Granderson, surrendered a home run to Reyes. Arodys Vizcaino replaced Krol and immediately got d’Arnaud to ground out to retire the side. Addison Reed took the mound in eighth and immediately surrendered a line drive single to Matt Kemp, but bounced back with the help of two strikeouts.
Ian Krol has an 8+ ERA. If the Mets had nothing to show from that, I would have screamed. Luckily, Reyes homered, which honestly is more of a miracle than defeating the Russians at Lake Placid these days. Reed did a nice job catching the Reyes homer on a fly in the bullpen. Boy, Matt Kemp just plain kills the Mets this season. In terms of his on-the-mound performance, Reed has been struggling of late, so it was nice to see him have a bounceback inning.
Post 9th, 7-5 Mets win (10:40 p.m.):
Jason Motte, the pride of Valley Central High School and Iona College, toed the rubber for the Braves in the ninth. You may remember him from his glory years with St. Louis, but injuries have transformed him into a journeyman and now he finds himself in Atlanta. Motte worked himself into a bit of trouble – a hustle double by Juan Lagares, an intentional walk to Conforto, and hitting Cabrera with a pitch, but escaped thanks to an inning ending 3-6-3 double play. Jeurys Familia came on for the save in the ninth and allowed a Jace Peterson pinch-hit single, but wrapped up the ninth with an inning ending 4-6-3 double play.
Took me a moment to recognize Jasson Motte without his trademarked beard. Turns out his daughter asked him to shave and upon seeing her clean-shaven father immediately asked him to grow it back. I thought the Mets would pick up some insurance off of Motte, but he held it together. Familia needs to get his confidence back. He was pulled on Saturday after getting himself into trouble and he needs to regain his lights-out, closer mentality to help this team get back on track. Overall, it feels good to finally be out of last place. Hopefully it stays that way.
King Jerry! @jerryblevins gets the
Blevins gets the crown tonight after pitching a crucial shutdown inning to keep the Mets in front. Could have gone to Conforto too, in my opinion.
Photo credit: Dale Zanine – USA Today Sports