1. Juan Steps Up
Juan Lagares filled in beautifully for the injured Yoenis Cespedes, starting in all three games this weekend, while collecting three hits, including a homerun, a triple, and two RBI. He got things started for the Mets with his solo shot in the opener on Friday night. Lagares is now batting .269 on the year with three home runs and eight RBI.
2. Old Reliable
With the Mets needing to get off on the right foot out of the All Star Break, Bartolo Colon was solid in his first start of the second half on Friday night. He retired 16 of the first 18 Phillies he faced, and went on to pitch 5 2/3 innings allowing just four hits and three runs. It wasn’t his best outing of the year, but it was good enough to get his eighth win of the season, and give his ball club a good start to the weekend.
3. Guess Who’s Back
Jacob deGrom may have pitched his best game as a Met in the series finale at Citizens Bank Park on Sunday. It was his first-career complete game, as his only blemish was allowing just one hit to the opposing pitcher. He retired 21 of the first 22 batters he faced, and went on to strike out seven batters. It was his third straight win of the year, as he now is 6-4 on the season with a 2.38 ERA. His final line of 9 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 SO, 105 pitches was good enough for the second highest Game Score (97) for a nine inning game in franchise history. In his last four starts, deGrom is 4-0 with 0.93 ERA, while giving up just 17 hits and striking out 27 batters in 29 innings.
1. Cabrera’s Error
Asdrubal Cabrera had himself a solid series with the bat, but it was his arm on Saturday night that may have cost the Mets a series sweep. His overthrow in the bottom of the seventh inning resulted in the Phillies tie-breaking run, an unearned run given to Jerry Blevins, who ended up suffering the loss. Said Cabrera: “That happens in the game. I didn’t want to do it I had all the time to make a good throw. I just threw the ball a little bit harder, and the ball got away.”
2. RISP Woes
It’s hard to believe a team can take two out of three when going 2-21 with runners in scoring position, but it’s amazing what the home run can do for you. The Mets improved to 44-18 on the year when hitting a homerun, and if it wasn’t for the long ball, the Mets would be in serious trouble. It was never so evident than on Saturday night, when the Mets failed to get a single hit with a runner on base. The Mets hit a total of four home runs in this weekend’s series.
3. Clutch Hitting
Terry Collins spoke of this after Saturday night’s loss, and it has been the story throughout the course of this season. The Mets have been bailed out by the long ball this year, and have yet to put strings of games together where they manufacture runs other than home runs. With runners on second and third and one out on Saturday night, Kelly Johnson hit a weak fly ball to left field. The Mets failed to score at all that inning, and it may have cost them the game. If the Mets want to catch up to the Nationals, they had better start getting some better timely hitting and some more productive outs.
“We had lots of opportunities to score runs,” Collins said on Saturday. “We’re not driving in runs when we need to. Once in a while you need hits, whether they are bloop singles or anything else. Take care of those opportunities when we get them, otherwise we’d be in much better shape…We had a couple of chances to add on, but we didn’t get it done.”