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Mets Bullpen Almost Negates Guillorme And deGrom Brilliance

After an inexplicable hiatus, Luis Guillorme was back in the lineup, and he picked up offensively and defensively. The beneficiary of his great play was Jacob deGrom who has been unaccustomed to Mets players stepping up their games when he’s on the mound.

For starters, deGrom was his usual brilliant self and showed no ill effects of his neck issue. The Marlins only had five base runners against deGrom and one of those was courtesy of a J.D. Davis error.

While that wasn’t surprising, deGrom getting support was mildly surprising. After being inexplicably benched a few games, Guillorme was back in the lineup, and he delivered almost immediately with an almost literal cue shot double.

The double moved Pete Alonso to third. He’d score on a Wilson Ramos sacrifice fly. That double is not all Guillorme did to provide support to deGrom. He was also his sterling self at second:

deGrom would also get some defensive help from Alonso. Good defense and a lead is a rare experience for deGrom.

Overall, deGrom pitched six shutout innings striking out seven. At 92 pitches, Luis Rojas pulled him even with Seth Lugo unavailable to pitch.

When the Mets went to the bullpen in the bottom of the seventh, the Mets had a 2-0 lead. The second run came in the top of the seventh when Guillorme singled home Dominic Smith, who had doubled earlier in the inning.

The bottom of the seventh didn’t get off to a great start with Jeurys Familia walked Francisco Cervelli. After a fielder’s choice, Davis wasn’t able to get a throw off after diving after a Logan Forsythe grounder.

With Jonathan Villar entering as a pinch hitter, Rojas brought in Justin Wilson. Wilson would do his job, but Ramos wouldn’t.

After a Villar groundout, Wilson would throw a pitch in the dirt. Instead of getting in front of it, Ramos missed on the backhand. The pitch went to the backstop as a run scored.

The Mets would get that run back in the top of the eighth when Smith doubled in Conforto. Unfortunately, the two run lead was not enough for Dellin Betances.

The Marlins loaded the bases with two outs against Betances. Instead of going to the bullpen for another reliever, Rojas let Betances pitch to Eddy Alvarez. With his second pitch of the at-bat, Betances hit Alvarez to force in a run.

Rojas then made a very curious decision. Edwin Diaz has a history of bouts of wildness. Bases loaded with the tying run at third was probably a better situation for Brad Brach who has better control and also has closing experience.

Diaz walked Forsythe on five pitches with none of them all that close. After blowing the save, Diaz rebounded to strike out Villar.

At that point, deGrom’s brilliance was wasted. It seemed Guillorme’s efforts were all for naught. At this point, the hope was the Mets would not fall apart and lose a game they should’ve won.

That didn’t happen, and that’s because Michael Conforto had another clutch ninth inning hit.

That two run homer gave the Mets a 5-3 lead. That was enough for Diaz who struck out the side in the ninth to vulture the win.

With the win, the Mets pull themselves to within two games of .500. They also are close to completing their first series sweep of the season.

Game Notes: Lugo was unavailable as he will start the series finale against the Marlins. He will be taking over Steven Matz‘s spot in the rotation with Matz moving to the bullpen.

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