Cespedes Grand And Pitching Goes Deep In Sweep
Well, this was exactly how the Mets drew it up. Dominant starting pitching and an offense to match. They only thing missing was the players capable of doing it.
But either Cespedes or Matz had an impact in this double header, Robert Gsellman made his latest case as to why the Mets should keep him in the rotation.
Gsellman flat out dominated the Braves over 6.1 innings allowing just three hits and two walks while striking out four. It was his latest big start after he had been temporarily moved to the bullpen due to his early season struggles.
The Mets needed that start too. They needed it because the Mets bullpen has been a mess. They needed it because of the double header. They needed it because Sean Newcomb was dealing for the Braves.
The Mets were only able to scratch one run against him in the second with the assistance of a throwing error from Newcomb. T.J. Rivera hit a sacrifice fly to make it 1-0. Mets had to wait until the eighth to get another real threat going.
The Mets had second and third with no outs against Luke Jackson after he hit Michael Conforto with a pitch, Cespedes singled, and Jackson threw a wild pitch. Ender Inciarte took what was a sure extra base hit and turned it into a Wilmer Flores sacrifice fly.
The Mets had Jackson and the Braves on the ropes, but they left him off the hook. Then Fernando Salas allowed an eighth inning homer to Brandon Phillips, and he needed to get bailed out by Addison Reed, who was coming on for the five out save partially because Terry Collins ripped through his bullpen yet again.
The ominous tone of the game, and perhaps the season changed with one swing of the bat:
Just like that, it was 6-1, but it was more than that. The Mets were rejuvenated. They won the first game, and then they went out and dominated the second game.
Like the first game of the double header, it all began with the starter. Matz pitched seven innings allowing just one run. That one run was in the seventh, but by that time, the game was already over.
Jay Bruce hit a three run homer in the fifth off Matt Wisler. Somehow in the sixth, Flores hit a triple, and he scored on a Travis d’Arnaud sacrifice fly making it 4-0.
T.J. Rivera provided insurance with an eighth inning two run homer. In the ninth, Juan Lagares hit a two run double making it 8-1. That’s a lead not even Neil Ramirez or Tyler Pill could blow.
That’s how different things are with Cespedes back in the fold. The Mets are scoring insurance runs, and their bullpen doesn’t blow leads.
Overall, it was a double header sweep where the Mets dominated the Braves. The Mets looked like the team many thought they would be to start the year. Both starters pitched into the seventh. There was a different vibe around this team. At least for one day, you believed this team still has some life.
Game Notes: Neil Walker returned from the stiff knee and played in both games starting the second. Cespedes was the 26th man. Rivera and Pill were sent down after the game to accommodate Matz and Seth Lugo being activated from the disabled list. Flores, Jose Reyes, and Conforto were the only players to start both games. Asdrubal Cabrera committed two errors.