The Mets (14-4) took care of their little brothers on Saturday afternoon, beating the Yankees (10-8) at Yankee Stadium by a score of 8-2.
Matt Harvey pitched for the Mets and was awesome, putting aside his personal feelings for the Yankees en route to 8.2 innings of two-run ball, striking out seven and walking two while allowing just five hits. After 4 starts, The Dark Knight is 4-0, tying him with Bartolo Colon and Alfredo Simon for the MLB lead.
The Mets got off to a fast start against CC Sabathia, who continued to look like a shell of his former self. Lucas Duda sent a
shallow fly ball no-doubter into the right field stands in the top of the first to give the Mets a 1-0 lead, their first of the series.
Sabathia plunked Eric Campbell with one out in the next inning, and Juan Lagares singled (his first of four hits in the game) to give the Mets runners on first and second. But Wilmer Flores and Kevin Plawecki each grounded out to Chase Headley to let CC out of the jam.
MMO Legend Stephen Drew smacked Harvey’s first pitch of the third inning for a double, bringing up fellow Discussion Board Celebrity Didi Gregorius. Didi laid down a good bunt which was fielded by Plawecki, whose only play appeared to be to first until Daniel Murphy failed to cover the bag, at which point the rookie had to put it in his pocket. With runners on the corners and none out, the Mets were able to double-up the speedy Jacoby Ellsbury, but Drew scored to even up the score at 1.
The Mets got the run back and then some in their next turn at the dish against Sabathia. Michael Cuddyer lined a single to center for his first hit in a few days, and then went in hard at second on Murphy’s weak grounder to break up a potential double-play. Eric Campbell crushed one to left-center (which is actually deep) for the second straight day, but Ellsbury was able to succeed where Brett Gardner had failed on Friday, making a sliding catch for the second out.
Ellsbury wouldn’t be so lucky on the next play, though. Lagares hit one over his head to dead-center, racing around the bases for a triple as Murphy scored to make it 2-1. (Lagares makes that catch.) Flores kept the rally going with a single up the middle that scored Juan, and Kevin Plawecki made it a 5-1 game with his first MLB homer, a liner over the left-field wall.
Harvey, now staked to a big lead, cruised through the Yankee lineup. CC settled down to turn the Mets aside in the fifth, but Soup finally discovered the less legitimate portion of Yankee Stadium in the sixth, hitting a leadoff home run to right-center. Lagares followed with his third hit of the day, and Sabathia was toast.
Esmil Rogers came out of the bullpen for the Yankees and immediately through a wild pitch that allowed Lagares to advance to second. Juan moved to third on a pop-up near the first base stands, and then scored on another wild pitch to give the Mets a 7-1 edge.
Harvey gave up a solo shot to Mark Teixeira to begin the home half of the seventh, but quickly resumed his domination of the 27-time champions (the Yankees asked me to say that at least once). The Mets tacked on one more run in the top of the eighth when Lagares, Flores, and Plawecki strung together a trio of two-out singles.
After a perfect eighth, Harvey came out to chase the second complete game of his career. Harvey got Gardner to fly out and struck-out Alex Rodriguez to close to within one out of the feat, but surrendered a first-pitch single to Tex and a four-pitch walk to Brian McCann,
allowing forcing Terry Collins to bring in Carlos Torres for the final out. Torres got Chris Young to ground into a force-out, and after a quick video review, the call was confirmed and the Mets had an 8-2 victory and their first win in their last two games.
Oh, and their 12th win in their last 13 games. Friday’s game was a bit of a letdown, but this team is hot. deGrom had a lousy outing in the series opener, but Harvey played the role of Avenger (wrong superhero reference?) and put the team on his back, determined not to let a losing streak be formed on his watch.
People will probably complain that the Mets let Harvey chase the complete game, but he wasn’t pitching under much stress, his pitch count wasn’t that high, and he has an extra day of rest before his next start. Oh, and he’s Matt Harvey. His willpower alone is like a PED. He’ll be fine. 15-20 pitches do not a re-torn UCL make.
Murphy is sure catching some heat these days, isn’t he? Wilmer Flores’ defense became less of a talking point once he started hitting. Murphy hasn’t started hitting yet, so he’s going to get scrutinized pretty harshly. But it’s early. Which is why people haven’t been trying to run Cuddyer out of town despite the 0-for-15 skid he snapped with his single today (before being retired in each of his next 3 at-bats). Murphy is a .290 hitter, not a .150 guy. He’ll turn it around. And then his defense won’t seem so bad (not that it will be good, of course). Heck, he nearly went deep in the ninth, but the ball hooked just foul. Murph isn’t a guy I’m worried about.
It’s nice to see the bullpen get a bit of a rest, especially since the Mets have played so many close games in the early going. Thank you, Matt.
Congrats to Kevin Plawecki. I called that he would hit his first HR this series, but that was because I thought his tendency to go the other way was perfectly tailored for the Short Porch. He pulled his blast today. Go figure.
As a Yankee hater, I actually root for A-Rod to go deep as often as possible, because I want to see the Yankees in an awkward in-season feud with a guy who has been one of their best hitters so far (after Chris Young, whose stat line fills me with pure rage). You let me down today, Alex.
Mayberry took an 0-fer today, but hit some balls well. He’s looking like a nice pickup.
Lagares went 4-for-4 after he had his 10-game hitting streak snapped yesterday. Nice bounce-back from Juan.
14-4. Fourteen and four. The Mets have the best record in baseball. That feels pretty good to write. The train just keeps on rolling. (What, you didn’t think I’d go the whole article without making a generic Subway pun, did you?)
Up next: The Mets will go for the series win on Sunday night in a game that will be broadcast on ESPN. Jon Niese (2-0, 1.50 ERA) will pitch for the Mets, and will face Nathan Eovaldi (1-0, 3.12)
UPDATE: I just realized, Terry Collins bringing in Carlos Torres to avoid wearing out a pitcher’s arm is definitely the most ironic thing that will happen this season.