Jeremy Hefner started off the game rough, and the offense was stifled on the whole by Stephen Strasburg in their sixth loss in a row, 5-2 to the Nationals.
Jeremy Hefner, filling in the rotation in the spot vacated by the designation of Miguel Batista was hit hard in the early innings, giving up back to back solo home runs in the second. Hefner settled down, and after a Josh Thole error, Hefner allowed the third run of the game. Hefner’s final line was six innings pitched, with three runs (two earned) on six hits, walking two and striking out seven. While this isn’t horrible, Hefner got himself into tricky situations and was forced to make pitches in hitters counts.
The bullpen today continued its inability to hold the fort down, with Tim Byrdak going two-thirds of an inning, allowing two runs on one hit with one walk. The homer was given up to a lefty, and if this is a product of overuse or just Byrdak being off his game is yet to be seen. Jon Rauch pitched one-third of an inning with nothing allowed, and Elvin Ramirez pitched the last two innings, walking one and striking out one.
Offensively, the Mets struggled off of Stephen Strasburg, netting four hits on the entire day, including an Ike Davis solo home run. Jordany Valdespin plated a run on an RBI groundout. The hitters have struggled the last few days, barely making solid contact in addition to playing poor defense.
GOAT: Tim Byrdak – as the LOOGY, it is the primary objective to get out lefty hitters. When you allow a two-run homer in the seventh inning when down by two with an ace on the mound for the other team, it is not acceptable.
Game Notes: David Wright was 0 for 4 with three strikeouts, being befuddled by Nationals pitchers all day. Ike Davis hit his 16th home run on the season, making him the team leader and taking a turn after a horrible April and May. Frank Francisco had his first rehab outing today for Binghamton, and didn’t look great but will be shaking the rust off in the next few outings. The Mets will begin a road trip tomorrow, sending heralded prospect Matt Harvey to the mound in his first Major League start against the Diamondbacks, opposing Wade Miley. Game time is 9:40 P.M.