A pair of aces took the mound in the Saturday edition of this five-game series between the New York Mets and the Philadelphia Phillies.
A day after Aaron Nola stifled the Mets for seven strong innings, deGrom one-upped his fellow NL Cy Young Award candidate by throwing the tenth complete game in the majors this year and deGrom’s first of the season.
On Hernandez’ strikeout, deGrom offered up three straight four-seamers, two of which were fouled off, before mixing in a 92 MPH slider that left the second baseman frozen.
deGrom retired catcher Wilson Ramos and right fielder Nick Williams on six pitches to start the second, then allowed a double to Maikel Franco that Michael Conforto appeared to have a beat on, and Odubel Herrera grounded out to end the inning.
The Phillies went down in order in the bottom of the third with deGrom needing just 13 pitches to get through the frame.
Entering the fourth after a 41-minute rain delay with just 34 pitches thrown, Jacob deGrom gave up a leadoff base hit to Hoskins, but retired Santana, struck out Ramos, and then punched out Williams to leave Hoskins on second.
deGrom got right back to work in the fifth, inducing a Franco groundout, benefitting from a sparkling backhand play from Jeff McNeil (his second in as many games) to retire Herrera.
He struck out Scott Kingery on a 98 MPH heater, Jake’s 200th strikeout of the season, to end the frame.
At just 59 pitches to start the sixth, Jacob deGrom struck out Roman Quinn and Carlos Santana to leave Hoskins stranded on second base again.
Nick Williams and Maikel Franco had back-to-back one-out base hits in the seventh. Herrera grounded out to McNeil, but Rosario threw away the double-play throw allowing Williams to score, cutting the Mets lead to 3-1.
Odubel Herrera made a baserunning blunder after reaching first base, couldn’t get back to the bag in time, and was tagged out to end the inning. deGrom finished the seventh with just 85 pitches.
Former Met Asdrubal Cabrera flew out to foul territory in left field to start the bottom of the eighth. deGrom struck out Justin Bour on a terrific slider for the second out, allowed a sharply hit single to Hernandez, bringing up Phillies slugger Rhys Hoskins as the tying run.
Hoskins watched a 93 MPH slider go by for strike one, then took another for a ball. Jake threw another slider for a ball, slipped a changeup around the right-hander’s knees, and got a big whiff on a 98 MPH four-seamer, inciting a little hop and glove slap from deGrom.
At 99 pitches, the 30-year-old righty came back out for the ninth and allowed a leadoff single to Santana. He got Ramos to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to erase the baserunner, and retired Williams on a groundout to first to end his gem.
Jacob deGrom’s final line was nine innings pitched, one unearned run allowed on seven hits with nine strikeouts and no walks.
deGrom lowered his MLB-leading earned-run average to 1.71. In his first at-bat of the start, he threw a 97.6 MPH fastball to Cesar Hernandez. The last batter he faced, Nick Williams, saw a 99 MPH fastball, deGrom’s fastest of the evening.
This was Jacob deGrom’s 22nd consecutive start allowing three earned runs or less, two shy of Dwight Gooden’s franchise record of 24 straight outings.
Arrieta retired the Mets in order in the first and set down Michael Conforto for the first out of the second before Todd Frazier smoked a one-out double to the base of the left-field wall for the Mets first hit of the game.
Devin Mesoraco, getting the start behind the plate, flew out to center to lead off the top of the third, deGrom struck out, and Arrieta got Amed Rosario to ground out.
Jeff McNeil led off the top of the fourth with a base hit to centerfield and Wilmer Flores followed that with a single that deflected off of the third base bag and brought McNeil home for the game’s first run.
With two on and none out, Conforto struck out looking (his fourth strikeout in his previous six at-bats), but Frazier poked a base hit into right field moving Flores to second.
Jackson struck out, then both runners advanced on a passed ball by Ramos, but Bautista popped out, causing Herrera and Hernandez to nearly collide.
The Mets went down in order in the top of the fifth, put two runners on in the sixth to no avail, but knocked the door down in the seventh once Jake Arrieta had left the game.
Devin Mesoraco crushed a solo shot with one out to give the Mets a 2-0, then after an Amed Rosario single, Jeff McNeil came within feet of a two-run homer, but settled for an RBI triple to go out to a 3-0 lead.
The Mets went down in succession in the eighth with Conforto striking out for the second time in the game and Jackson for the fourth time.
Bautista went down swinging to lead off the ninth against Philadelphia right-hander Hector Neris. Mesoraco grounded out to shortstop, and deGrom, signaling that he would come out for the ninth, batted for himself, never taking the bat off of his shoulder, and struck out.
The game is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. and will be televised on ESPN (broadcast on 710 WOR).