This week the Mets were dealt a devastating blow, which has put a major crimp in their rebuilding style. All Star outfielder Michael Conforto suffered a season-ending shoulder injury, followed by the loss of Yoenis Cespedes to a persistent hamstring issue that has compromised the controversial Cuban’s ability to remain healthy.
On Saturday, after the news that Steven Matz will take a seat for surgery to relocate the ulnar nerve in his left elbow, Robert Gsellman’s bloated ERA in his sophomore year has yielded a trip back to Triple-A.
NY’s flair for the dramatic was in full bloom on Sunday after blowing a five-run lead in the first game of a doubleheader against the Nationals. Amed Rosario hit a solo go-ahead home run in the eighth, which held up for a rare Sunday victory after Travis d’Arnaud‘s game ending tag on Edwin Jackson at the plate.
Asdrubal Cabrera gifted Mets starter Tommy Milone a three-run lead in the first with his 10th home run of the season. Later, Wilmer Flores showed what he’s capable of when given consistency in the line-up, following up his Saturday 4-for-5 offense with a two-run shot in the third.
Milone’s bid for his second win quickly vanished in the fifth after allowing three consecutive base hits, compromising the Mets battered bullpen going into the nightcap.
“I thought he threw the ball good today,” Mets manager Terry Collins said of Milone. “I thought he threw very good. Kept them off balance with his off-speed stuff and located his fastball better than he has [before], and I thought he pitched pretty well today.”
The anticipated return of starter Seth Lugo from the disabled list was a dud, as the Nationals had no trouble hitting his curve ball. Mets manager Terry Collins wasted no time giving the left-hander the hook after he surrendered two runs in three innings and change.
Juan Lagares put the Mets on the board in the sixth, sending home Jose Reyes with a double to left. Rookie Brandon Nimmo then launched a go-ahead two-run shot to center, smiling all the way around the bases, and into the dugout, in celebration of his first dinger of the season.
In the bottom of the inning, clinging to a one-run lead, Hansel Robles replaced an effective Josh Smoker, and the reliever, who struck out the two batters he faced in game one, proceeded to lose his location, location, location. He walked three consecutive Washington hitters, the last one scoring a run to even the score.
“He just doesn’t do that very much,” Mets manager Terry Collins said of Robles. “I think when it starts to go south, I don’t know if he can slow himself down enough to be able to regain [it]. We’ll have to talk to him about it and see if we can get him back on track faster.”
Collins called on Chasen Bradford to stop the bleeding with the bases loaded, and immediately walked in the go ahead run. After getting a double play, Bradford completed a 1-2-3 seventh, giving way to Erik Goeddel in the eighth. He hung a breaking ball to Adam Lind for an opposite field insurance run, which proved to be money well spent.
Because in the ninth, the Mets attempt at a consecutive dramatic comeback fell short. After Travis d’Arnaud and Gavin Cecchini reached base on line drive singles to left, Jose Reyes’ line drive to a diving Michael Taylor closed the gap to 5-4. Then in typical Mets losing fashion, Juan Lagares laced a liner into the glove of an ex-Met, Alejandro De Aza.
At least the Mets finally pulled off a win on Sunday, but wouldn’t it figure they did it on a day when they lost a game on that same Sunday, as well.