Friday, June 26, 2015


Finally, the Mets were able to provide enough offense to back the latest in a string of dominant outings by that day's starting pitcher, in this particular case Jacob deGrom, as they salvaged the final game of a thoroughly embarrassing and humbling road trip that saw them lose 7 out of 8 games, 5 of them to teams they probably should have been wiping the floor with, and score all of 11 runs over said 8 games.

The game's hero is all deGrom, who's actually been pitching like he's the ace of this pitching staff, and not Harvey. Harvey gets the acclaim and Syndergaard is the phenom, but it's been Jacob deGrom who's had the best season of the bunch to this point. He's been great for the better part of the last two months now, although his record at 8-5 doesn't necessarily speak to that, some of his other numbers, like the 2.15 ERA, 100 strikeouts in 100.1 innings, and 0.93 WHIP, are better indicators of his success. More telling would be the 63 strikeouts and 6 walks he's allowed in his last 8 starts, where he's pitched to an ERA of 1.23. I know I said you can't go by the record but I suppose I have to mention that he's 5-1 over those 8 starts, although he shouldn't have lost the 1, and in the other game the bullpen blew his lead.

Basically, deGrom has been so good that more often than not he's able to outpitch his miserable offense, and yes, he's benefited from games where he got backed with 14- and 7-run outbursts, but those are infrequent occurrences. Most days, deGrom has had to work with nothing, like he did last Friday in Atlanta and again today in Milwaukee. Last week, deGrom left a 1-0 game in a tight spot and could only watch as the bullpen blew his lead and hung him with a loss. Today, the Mets backed him with a veritable deluge of 2 runs, and when deGrom found himself with men on base in the 7th and 8th innings, he shooed away coaches and finished the job himself, plowing through 8 sterling shutout innings without walking a batter and striking out 7 on 4 hits. Jeurys Familia returned from his lack of a Save opportunity groin injury to pitch an incident-free 9th inning, thereby sealing the deal on this Mets victory that feels just a little bit like too little too late. But that remains to be seen.

With the offense floundering, the Mets of course responded to this by calling up pitching prospect Steven Matz to slot into another attempt at a 6-man rotation, which I suppose will last for a week or two until they sufficiently alienate Jon Niese. Matz will start Sunday against the Reds (Meet the Matz?), where I assume he will be the latest Mets pitcher to enjoy the high pleasure of stopping the opponent cold and taking a loss because the offense didn't score any runs and Daniel Murphy caught some bad vibes on a ground ball.

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