The Mets (47-65) took the rubber game this afternoon with an 8-0 victory over the Cincinnati Reds (50-65) at Citi Field.
Jacob deGrom again starred, although only over six innings. He threw 66 of his 100 pitches for strikes, fanning 10 while allowing just one walk and three hits in yet another scoreless effort.
Just two Reds runners made it to scoring position against him this afternoon – one in the first inning and one in the third, and just one batter (Jose Peraza) would reach base over deGrom’s final three frames. His 76 game score is the highest figure since a July 11 start against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Jerry Blevins was given the eighth inning and continued off his recent success, striking out two with his curveball. Although his 3.94 ERA is still a far cry from what fans anticipated at the beginning of the season, Blevins has not allowed an earned run in any of his last seven appearances (6.1 total innings pitched), and opposing hitters have managed just a .100/.182/.100 line in that time.
Robert Gsellman allowed two singles in the ninth inning, but still kept the shutout in-tact with a popout and two groundouts to preserve deGrom’s sixth victory of the year, and first since June 18.
The Mets combined to draw 11 walks in today’s win (the most since May 1, 2016, against the Chicago White Sox), with every starting player reaching base at least once in a hearty dismantling of Robert Stephenson (who lasted just four innings while walking five) and the Cincinnati bullpen.
Austin Jackson opened the scoring in the second inning with an RBI double down the left field line to score Michael Conforto from first base. With an impressive 3-for-5 display, Jackson has now notched 14 hits in his first 32 at-bats in a Met uniform to complement a 1.174 OPS.
The Mets made sure to put one more dent in Stephenson’s start with a fourth-inning rally that included walks to Jose Bautista, Devin Mesoraco (albeit intentional – to load the bases), and deGrom himself – the last of which forced in a run. Amed Rosario lifted a sacrifice fly the other way to plate the Mets’ third run of the afternoon (and the thousandth of Bautista’s career) before a Jeff McNeil popout cut the party short.
The Mets scored another pair off Michael Lorenzen in the fifth inning after Brandon Nimmo doubled home Conforto (who had reached on a hustle double of his own) and Jackson knocked a single of plate him.
Nimmo had three doubles on the afternoon, raising his average to .252 in hopefully the first step to combat his dry spell at the plate. He drove home two more in the eighth inning against Keury Mella to score two runs before Austin Jackson (again) drove him in with another double.
The Mets have off tomorrow, flying into Miami where they will begin a three-game series against the Marlins. Zack Wheeler will look to continue his breakthrough season against Jose Urena (career 3.21 ERA, 0.98 WHIP in seven career starts against the Mets) for a 7:10 PM start on SNY.