The New York Mets went into the ninth inning of their game against the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday with a 3-2 lead and closer Jeurys Familia coming in.
Familia got the first out of the inning before walking Joe Panik to put the tying run on. He then got a ground ball from Eduardo Nunez to third baseman Wilmer Flores that should have been a game-ending double play. Flores booted the ball, then made a wild throw Neil Walker at second base that pulled him off the bag.
Following the misplay by Flores, Hunter Pence singled in a run and Buster Posey walked to load the bases for rookie infielder Christian Arroyo. The 21-year old Arroyo hit a 1-0, 95 MPH sinker down the left field line to empty the bases and give the Giants a 6-3 lead.
Familia ended up getting only one out while allowing four runs (three earned) on two hits, two walks and took his first loss of the season.
“He seems completely disinterested,” one scout who has watched him this season told Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News. “His body language stinks. His velocity is (down), it used to be better. It should still be good enough to get outs when located. His splitter seems to have less drop.”
There’s no doubt that yesterday’s loss was tough to take. There were a combination of questionable decisions that on their own were not to blame for the loss, but in totality led to the Mets defeat.
- Why didn’t Conforto pinch hit with the bases loaded?
- Why did Collins bring in Familia with a five run lead the day before?
- With the day off on Thursday, why was Reyes batting leadoff instead of Conforto?
- And if Conforto was resting a slightly sore hamstring why did he end up entering the game anyway?
- Does Collins know Conforto has a .900 OPS vs LHP and Cabrera is at .635?
Getting back to Familia, according to Brooks Baseball, Familia is averaging 98.28 MPH on his four-seam fastball this season compared to 97.63 MPH last season and 97.39 MPH on his sinker in 2017 compared to 96.70 in 2016.
Possible culprit could be that Familia was throwing his third straight day, and unnecessarily so, because Terry Collins used him on Tuesday to close out a 6-1 victory.
Before being used for the the third straight day, Familia had dominated in his last five appearances allowing only one base runner in five innings.
At the time of the move on Tuesday, it seemed like a bad idea for Collins to use Familia (and Reed and Blevins) with a fairly comfortable lead and it came back to bite the Mets on Wednesday.
However, let’s not forget that Flores booted a ball that could’ve got Familia and the Mets out of the inning with Matt Reynolds, who is a far superior defender, sitting on the bench in a one-run game.
Look, about what the scout said, I don’t know how anyone can say Familia looks disinterested. That’s a load of garbage…
Yes, Familia does not appear as dominant as he was in 2015 or 2016 for that matter. But to say he’s disinterested is ridiculous. While the results may not show it I have no doubt that Familia gives a max effort every time he takes the mound. It will be interesting to see how he bounces back and maybe yesterday’s performance will serve as a big motivator.