As has become custom with the Mets in recent years, nothing ever comes easy. Even after the team has changed front office and ownership regimes, some of the same issues have stung the Mets. For example, the bullpen has been atrocious through two games this season. Coming into the season, the Mets felt confident about the bullpen this season believed it would be a strength.
Early on, it has proved to be the opposite and if things don’t change, it could be problematic. That is, the bullpen could prove to be the eventual downfall of the team. Mets fans have heard this story before and the frustrations have already begun to appear. The Mets won by a final score of 8-4 tonight, but it was anything but an easy victory.
The Mets always tend to make games more interesting than they usually should. Therefore, many fans began to panic as the Phillies made things interesting in the final two innings. Fortunately, the team was able to close things out and give Steve Cohen his first win as the owner of the club.
Marcus Stroman Goes Six Strong Innings
Marcus Stroman got the start for the Mets looking to get the Mets back on track after last night. He threw six strong innings, with his only blemish being a Didi Gregorius solo homerun. In the six innings, Stroman allowed just three hits and two walks and struck out three batters. Twelve of the Eighteen outs that Stroman was recorded via ground-outs. Stroman is known to be a ground-ball pitcher and tonight was no different. The Mets infield defense was flawless for Stroman, and for him to succeed, they will need to continue to do so. The Mets infield defense in the past, specifically after the Mets acquired Stroman in 2019, struggled in front of him. Following the club’s acquisition of Francisco Lindor, the Mets have their best up-the-middle defense in several years. As a result, Stroman is going to be a major beneficiary of that.
Smith, Alonso Go Deep In Mets Victory
The Mets big bats were awakened somewhat in the victory as two of the Mets big bats went deep. Dominic Smith was the first Mets player to go yard this season as he hit a home run on a pitch at his shoulder. In the ninth inning, Pete Alonso would get a hold of one as well and drove one out to left-field for a two-run shot. In between, the Mets had a four-run seventh inning even though they recorded one hit. That was due to four walks, yes, four walks, from Phillies reliever Vince Velasquez. The Mets then got a sacrifice fly from Francisco Lindor, in what would be his first RBI as a NY Met. After that, the Mets got their fifth run on a double steal as J.T. Realmuto threw the ball into center field. The Mets’ last run of the inning was scored via a Michael Conforto double to right field as the Mets took a five-run lead.
Mets Bullpen Struggles Again
The Mets bullpen struggled yet again following last night’s blown game. Miguel Castro came into the seventh inning following Stroman’s six-inning performance. He got the first two outs relatively easily, but then allowed a double to Adam Haseley, the #9 hitter, and a single to Rhys Hoskins, giving the Phillies their second run of the night. He then gave up another single to Alec Bohm before getting Bryce Harper to line out to Nimmo in center field.
Trevor May returned in the eighth inning following last night’s failure. After getting J.T. Realmuto to fly out, he allowed two straight singles, soft nonetheless, to Didi Gregorius and Jean Segura to put Philly one runner way from getting the tying run to the plate. Fortunately for May and the Mets, he recorded two straight strikeouts to end the inning.
In the ninth inning, Jeurys Familia got in his first game of the season. It was a struggle yet again for Familia, as command continues to be a concern. He allowed the first two runners to reach, a single and a double, allowing the Phillies to score their 3rd run. He then struck Andrew McCutchen out swinging, however, allowed Bryce Harper to reach via a walk. Familia would then get a ground ball from J.T. Realmuto, though Realmuto’s speed prevented a game-ending double play. Familia would get the final out of the game on a flyout from Didi Gregorius as the Mets held on for the victory.
Mets Close Out Series Tomorrow Before Heading Home
The Mets and Phillies will conclude the three-game series tomorrow afternoon at 4:05 pm. David Peterson gets his first start of the season tomorrow as he faces off against Phillies ace Aaron Nola. Peterson will look for some success against the Phillies after struggling in an outing against them in September of last year. After the game, the Mets will head back to New York as they get set for Thursday’s home opener against the Miami Marlins.