Seth Lugo

Pete Alonso Powers Tylor Megill’s First Career Win

Steven Matz was once in this position. On the mound at Citi Field getting his first MLB hit and win. Except, those days are gone now.

Instead Matz was squaring off against the Mets. He was trying to keep Tylor Megill winless. He gave it his best shot, but he fell short.

Matz wasn’t successful for three reasons. First and foremost, Megill was really good. For the second straight start, he pitched six innings. For the second straight start, he had his best career start.

This start was far more impressive than his last. It’s not just because of the two hits and one walk while striking out five. It was because of the strength of the Toronto Blue Jays lineup.

Keep in mind, after Bo Bichette stole second in the first, no other Blue Jay would get into scoring position against Megill. Of course, there was some clutch defense.

Matz also had a strong start against his hometown team. Ironically, the only problem with his start was his start. Mets fans are all too familiar with that.

  • Matz walked Brandon Nimmo to start the first. Then, Pete Alonso hit a homer giving the Mets a 2-0 lead.
  • Past that, there wasn’t any offense from either side. That wasn’t until Alonso again homered in the eighth. This one was an impressive shot to the second deck.

    This 3-0 lead stood because the Mets bullpen was strong. Seth Lugo and Trevor May each pitched a scoreless inning. Edwin Diaz, who blew three consecutive saves, would not blow this one.

    Diaz was hit hard, but they were at em balls. These meant instead of extra base hits Mets cruised to victory hete and look to continue winning.

    Game Notes: Jeff McNeil was held out of the lineup due to muscle weakness. The Mets acquired Rich Hill in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays.

    Mets Refused To Lose

    After first inning homers by Pete Alonso and Jeff McNeil, the Mets lead 3-0. That lead didn’t last long.

    It wasn’t Jerad Eickhoff‘s fault. Of the seven runs he allowed over his 3.2 innings, only two were earned. The four errors over the first two inning (somehow Luis Guillorme had three) didn’t help.

    After all that, the 3-0 lead became a 7-3 deficit, and it looked like Pittsburgh all over again. In actuality, it was, but it was like the series finale.

    Michael Conforto got the comeback started with a two run homer in the fourth.

    Later in the inning, Tomas Nido drove in a run. Suddenly, just like that, the gap was narrowed to 7-6. That gap would be closed the following inning when Dominic Smith homered.

    It was a brand new game, and it would stay tied into the seventh. Miguel Castro departed with one on and two out. He didn’t get out of the inning as J.D. Davis had his typical difficulty getting the ball out of his glove thereby costing the Mets of any chance to get an inning ending double play.

    Seth Lugo came on, and he was getting pinched, and he had a tick off his velocity. This led to Jonathan India walking, and Jesse Winker doubling home the go-ahead run.

    Josh Osich started the eighth, and he allowed a leadoff single to Conforto. Then, Dave Jauss, who was filling in for the suspended Luis Rojas, made a very curios decision.

    At that point, Nido had a double and an RBI. James McCann had been scuffling amidst an 0-for-11 streak. Naturally, when Jauss tabbed McCann to pinch hit for Nido, he hit a go–ahead two run homer.

    That shouldn’t been enough for a 9-8 win. The problem was for the first time in his career, Edwin Diaz would blow three straight saves.

    Part of that was Diaz walking Kyle Farmer to start the inning. The other part was Jauss unnecessarily having Diaz pitch to Winker. Predictably, Winker hit the game tying single to tie the game at 9-9.

    In extra innings, the took advantage of the dumb gimmick when McCann singled home the go-ahead run. Remarkably, the ball double tapped his bat on the singles. It was 10-9 heading into the bottom of the inning.

    With all the bullpen usage, the Mets opted for Anthony Banda for the save. It didn’t go well. Two batters into the inning, there were runners on first and second with Tyler Naquin driving home the tying run.

    After that, Jose Peraza made an impact against his former team starting the around the horn double play on Eugenio Suarez‘s grounder. He’d then get the put out on the ensuring Shogo Akiyama grounder to send the game to the 11th.

    Brandon Nimmo led off the 11th putting runners at the corners. After a poor Alonso at-bat, McNeil delivered the go-ahead single giving the Mets an 11-10 lead.

    For some reason, with Banda of all people up, the Mets put the contact play on. The end result was Nimmo getting nailed at home. Fortunately, the Mets weren’t done as Kevin Pillar and Conforto would go back-to-back.

    That 15-10 lead was enough for even Banda. Although, he did test that allowing back-to-back one out singles pulling the Reds to within 15-11.

    This led to Jauss bringing in Trevor May. Nick Castellanos gave one a ride, but it fell just short and into Conforto’s mitt. May then struck out Mike Freeman to end the game.

    With that, May saved hid second in a row and third of the season. That’s a testament to the never give up mentality of this never give up clubhouse.

    Game Notes: Mets are 177-0 all-time when scoring at least 12 runs. Johneshwy Fargas was designated for assignment. Travis Blankenhorn was optioned to Syracuse. Eickhoff and Stephen Nogosek were called up.

    Kumar Is Going To Shake Shack

    Sure, the New York Mets inexplicably blew a 5-0 first inning lead to the lousy Pittsburgh Pirates, but it’s still a great day for the organization. The reason? They drafted Kumar Rocker!

    Before the year, Rocker was expected to be the first overall pick. For various reasons, including perceived signability as well as a late year dip in velocity, Rocket moved down the draft board. Still, with there were rumors it could happen, no one really expected him to fall to 10 where the Mets were drafting.

    Still, that didn’t stop the Mets from doing their due diligence. Tommy Tanous, Marc Tramuta, and other Mets scouts went to see Rocker pitch. They saw a pitcher they thought had elite stuff and an elite makeup. They saw someone they didn’t expect to be available.

    Despite everyone passing, they weren’t fooled, and they made the best pick possible. It’s what they did when they grabbed Brandon Nimmo, Dominic Smith, Michael Conforto, David Peterson, Jared Kelenic, and others.

    Simply put, the Mets know how to draft. They’ve become great at it, and on a day like today, when a player unexpectedly falls to them, they know exactly what to do.

    That was to grab an exceptionally talented pitcher. As noted by MLB Pipeline, he had quite the repertoire with a developing change and more:

    He usually operates at 93-96 mph with his heater, which can reach 99 and features some run and sink but also can get flat at times, though his velocity sat in the low 90s for three weeks early in the season. He notched all 19 of his whiffs in his no-hitter with his slider, a mid-80s beast with power and depth that grades as plus-plus, and he also has a low-80s curveball with more vertical break. 

    What Rocker will be is anyone’s guess. That said, he has ace potential, and he’s with a Mets organization which develops pitching quite well. Just ask Jacob deGrom and Seth Lugo.

    Pete Alonso Double Game Winner

    There are times when the New York Mets offense can’t do anything, and it leaves you baffled. Other times, there’s a pitcher like Brandon Woodruff they just need to outlast.

    Tonight was one of those nights, but fortunately, Tylor Megill was very up to the task. The surprising rookie went toe-to-toe with Woodruff over five innings.

    In the fourth, rut Milwaukee Brewers finally broke through with an Omar Navarez solo shot. At that point, Woodruff was perfect and looked like he had perfect game stuff.

    However, yet again, Brandon Nimmo was a catalyst. He’d hit a lead-off double, and go the consternation of many, he’d move to third on a Francisco Lindor sacrifice bunt. If nothing else, this helped the Mets manufacture a run as Dominic Smith hit a game tying sacrifice fly.

    After five, Megill was done having allowed just one run on two hits and two walks while striking out seven. It was yet another step forward for him and further proof he can handle the fifth starter job.

    With Megill out of the game, it was up to the Mets bullpen. In the sixth and seventh, Aaron Loup and Seth Lugo each pitched a perfect inning with two strikeouts.

    Entering the bottom of the seventh, Woodruff had allowed just one hit and really just the one base runner. That changed when Lindor drew a lead-off walk, and Smith followed with a single putting runners at the corners with no outs.

    Pete Alonso jumped on Woodruff’s first pitch driving an RBI double into the left field corner. On the play, we’d probably see Gary Disarcina‘s first aggressive send which didn’t blow up in the Mets face:

    Alonso later scored on a Michael Conforto RBI single giving the Mets a 4-1 lead. This marked the second time all year Woodruff allowed over three runs and the first time outside of Colorado.

    That was the score as Edwin Diaz entered in the ninth to try to earn the save. It was far from easy, and in many ways, it might’ve been Diaz’s most impressive save this year.

    Willy Adames sjngied, and Narvarez. In his career, Diaz has had issues with runners in scoring position, and we’d see that here with Tyrone Taylor singling home Adames to pull the Brewers within two runs.

    That’s when Diaz showed us something he really hasn’t in his Mets career. He rebounded to strike out Jace Peterson and Keston Hiura. Finally, Jackie Bradley, Jr. flew out to end the game.

    In what could be an NLDS preview, Megill held his own against the Brewers ace. The Mets then took advantage of Woodruff going through the other a third time. Mostly, the Mets again persevered.

    Game Notes: Keith Hernandez had a day off but suffered an injury at his home which invoked trying to prune while standing at the edge of his hot tub. Mets are 35-6 when scoring at least four runs.

    Nothing Luis Guillorme Could Do

    When Michael Conforto drove home Francisco Lindor in the top of the first, it wasn’t hyperbolic to think it was game over. Jacob deGrom was on the mound, and one run is all he needs.

    That was except for tonight. In inexplicable fashion, deGrom surrendered more runs than he had in either the month of April or May.

    Somehow Ehire Adrianza led off the bottom of the first with a triple. After he was singled home, to the astonishment of everyone, Austin Riley homered off of deGrom making it a 3-1 game.

    At that moment, deGrom’s ERA finally creeped over 1.00. It didn’t stay that way for long, even on a night where deGrom’s velocity occasionally (and purposefully?) dipped.

    From that point, deGrom was a man on a mission. He’d put up six scoreless after that recording 12 of his 14 strikeouts. Fortunately, he’d get a no decision for his effort.

    For that, he can pretty much thank only Dominic Smith. While the Mets offense was sputtering again, Smith had a two home run game sending this guy tied into the bottom of the ninth.

    Luis Rojas tabbed Seth Lugo to pitch the inning. The decision was the right one, but sometimes the right decisions don’t work. For Lugo, the problems started when he threw away a ball on a ball hit by Guillermo Heredia. Just like that, it was a single and an error putting the leadoff man on second.

    A Pablo Sandoval fielder’s choice put Heredia on third, and Lugo struck out Kevan Smith. After intentionally walking Ronald Acuña, Lugo faced Ender Inciarte. Inciarte battled, and the umpire completely missed the 3-2 pitch meaning the bases were loaded instead of the inning being over.

    That brought Freddie Freeman to the plate. There was some second guessing as to why Lugo instead of Aaron Loup here, but Lugo is the team’s best reliever, and he gets LHB out. If not for bad luck, Lugo gets out of the inning.

    If it doesn’t hit Lugo’s foot, it goes to the 10th. There were many saying Luis Guillorme should’ve gone to third, but given how he was heading away from the base, and it was Acuña running, he’s not beating him to the bag. Really, the throw was the only play.

    Said another way, once it hit Lugo, the game was over. It’s shouldn’t have come to that with the umpire blowing a call in the Inciarte AB. More than that, the Mets needed someone other than Smith hitting.

    Mets Split 2-1 Extra Inning Games Against Phillies

    In the first game of the doubleheader, Aaron Nola had out-dueled Taijuan Walker. Not only did he match Tom Seaver‘s MLB record of 10 consecutive strikeouts (with the aide of some very questionable strike calls), but he drove home the only run heading into the seventh.

    It looked like the Mets would lose in a frustrating 1-0 fashion. That was until Luis Guillorme led off the ninth, sorry seventh, with a comebacker against Jose Alvarado. Alvarado threw it away allowing Guillorme to go to second.

    Albert Almora pinch hit and struck out. Jeff McNeil then grounded out putting all the pressure on Francisco Lindor. Lindor had Alvarado’s timing, and he delivered a game tying single.

    Luis Rojas made an astute move double switching Seth Lugo into the game. Not only did this bring in his best reliever, but due to a quirk in the extra inning rules, it put Lindor at second even though he didn’t make the last out.

    After Lugo struck out three of the four batters he faced, the Mets were going to get their opportunity to walk it off.

    The left-handed Ranger Suarez intentionally walked Pete Alonso to face Dominic Smith. For some reason, Smith offered to bunt the first two pitches, and on the third, he hit a walk-off RBI single giving the Mets a 2-1 win.

    Once again, in the second game of the doubleheader, the offenses were anemic. Only this time, it wasn’t as excusable because it was Matt Moore and David Peterson.

    For a split second in the second, it appeared Almora put the Mets ahead 2-0 on a homer. However, Andrew McCutchen went up to grab it, and while the Mets thought it hit the back wall, replay upheld the out call.

    Entering the sixth, there was a combined five hits in the scoreless game. Bryce Harper homered in the sixth to give the Phillies a 1-0 lead, and once again, in the bottom of the seventh, the Phillies bullpen begged the Mets to win the game.

    Instead of Alvarado, Joe Girardi tabbed Archie Bradley to close it out. There was no one warming in the pen. You could say it was a mistake, but the Phillies bullpen is terrible.

    Bradley book-ended Guillorme once again reaching on an error by walking two batters to load the bases with no outs. Walk-off king Patrick Mazeika strode to the plate, but he struck out.

    James McCann gave one a ride to deep center, but even though he was playing shallow, Odubel Herrera tracked it down. Instead of a game winner, it was a game tying sacrifice fly.

    Jeff McNeil, who had a tough doubleheader going 0-for-7 with three strikeouts, grounded out to end the inning.

    Rojas went to Sean Reid-Foley, the 27th man for the doubleheader for the eighth. Reid-Foley did what he needed to do, but he got some bad luck behind him.

    Brad Miller hit a grounder to Lindor. Lindor couldn’t quite get a handle on it allowing Rafael Marchand to get to third without a throw. The Phillies then pinch ran Travis Jankowski for him.

    The Mets drew the infield in, and Herrera hit a hit shot at Guillorme. Guillorme made a great play to snag it on the short hop, but it popped out of his glove as it hit the ground. Guillorme was noticeably frustrated with himself for being unable to make a play at home, but he made a great play just to get the out at first.

    Unfortunately, there were no heroics against Hector Neris. Lindor and Alonso grounded out before Smith struck out to end the game.

    In the end, the Mets scored zero earned runs, but they were still able to scratch out a split. That’s good, and yet, there can be some frustration as a Mets team with a nearly complete lineup could barely score runs.

    Game Notes: Jonathan Villar was put on the IL, and Travis Blankenhorn was recalled. J.D. Davis was transferred to the 60 day IL, and the Mets claimed Chance Sisco. Mason Williams opted for free agency. Aaron Loup and Edwin Diaz were unavailable to pitch.

    Jacob deGrom Was Great And Healthy

    For the faint of heart, Jacob deGrom took the mound against the Atlanta Braves. Despite everyone signing off on his starting, and deGrom saying he was good to go, people were nervous.

    As it turns out, it was the Atlanta Braves who should’ve been nervous as deGrom was deGrom. As is usual, he had the look of a perfect game. Speaking of look, deGrom was the first pitcher checked for sticky substances as per MLB protocols.

    The Braves didn’t get a base runner until the third when deGrom seemed to lose focus and walk the opposing pitcher, Kyle Muller. The Braves wouldn’t get a hit until the fifth. Part of the reason was deGrom’s pitching, and as it turns out, his defense.

    Things did get a little dicey there. deGrom walked Guillermo Heredia on four pitches. Two pitches later, Kevan Smith hit a fly ball to deep left center. There was a miscommunication of sorts between Dominic Smith and Albert Almora Jr. leading to the ball to drop.

    Fortunately for the Mets, it went over the wall for an automatic double. If not, chances are Heredia scores there. Pablo Sandoval popped out to end the inning and the Braves only chance against deGrom.

    At that time, the Mets lead 1-0 due to the legs of Jonathan Villar.

    After leading off the bottom of the first with a walk, he went to second when Francisco Lindor tried to push a bunt through the shift. It was ruled a sacrifice. After Villar advanced on a Smith fly out, he scored on a Muller wild pitch.

    It was that way until the bottom of the fifth. Unfortunately, the rally was started when Braves reliever Shane Greene plunked Tomas Nido. It looked to come off his wrist, and it knocked Nido out of the game.

    We’d see deGrom come out of the game next, but that was for a pinch hitter. Jeff McNeil was activated off the IL, and he hit a single off the first pitch he saw. After a Villar single, the bases were loaded with two outs.

    Greene fell behind Lindor 3-0, and Lindor jumped on the pitch but he flew out to shallow right. With the Braves bringing in the left-handed Sean Newcomb to face Smith. The move backfired as Smith hit a bases clearing double to give the Mets a 4-0 lead.

    After the inning, Smith took over at first with the Mets double switching Pete Alonso out of the game. It appeared to be a move to get Seth Lugo to finish the final two innings.

    That plan went by the wayside in what was a screwy inning. Initially, it seemed Lugo hit Ronald Acuña Jr. with a 1-2 pitch. After Acuña was awarded first, the Mets asked for replay.

    Not only did the pitch not hit Acuña, but it hit the knob of his bat. With James McCann securing the foul tip, it went from the lead-off hitter reaching to a strikeout. The replay and subsequent discussion took time which Gary Cohen later suggested threw Lugo off a bit.

    Freddie Freeman walked, and then Ozzie Albies hit a two run homer to pull the Braves to within 4-2. Lugo rebounded from there, and Edwin Diaz mowed down the Braves in order for his 15th save of the season.

    All-in-all, this was a great first game of the doubleheader. deGrom was great, healthy, and he set more records. The Mets got a big hit with insurance runs. Ultimately, they got the 4-2 win.

    Game Notes: deGrom has 12 straight starts allowing one run or fewer. He also has 30 consecutive shut out innings.

    Issue Wasn’t Edwin Diaz Relieving Seth Lugo

    The Mets pitching was again phenomenal. That started with Joey Lucchesi pitching 5.1 scoreless innings. After that, the bullpen provided 2.2 scoreless.

    That last one-third of an inning came from Seth Lugo. It wasn’t a pressure situation in the bottom of the eighth, but Luis Rojas tabbed to get relieve Aaron Loup and get Trea Turner out.

    He did. Keep in mind, Lugo’s turn in the order didn’t come up. He didn’t have an injury issue. The Mets didn’t get a lead.

    Simply put, Rojas just trusted Edwin Diaz against the Washington Nationals top hitters more than Lugo. Honestly, this is not a bad decision.

    Lugo has been phenomenal, but he’s still working his way back from injury. The Mets are also in an insane stretch of games, and they’ll need a fresh Lugo again soon. Mostly, this is Diaz whose been phenomenal all year.

    No, it didn’t work. Diaz walked Juan Soto before surrendering back-to-back singles to Ryan Zimmerman and Yan Gomes. With that, the Mets lost 1-0.

    It should be noted with Soto, that was a completely blown call. Still, the inning fell apart, and the Nationals scored the only run of the game.

    Therein lies the problem. Erick Fedde limited the Mets to two hits over seven innings. He did walk four, but the Mets did nothing to drive home any runs.

    Mason Williams and Luis Guillorme were thrown out trying to steal a base. In total, the Mets were 0-for-1 with RISP, and they stranded four.

    When you get just two hits, and you don’t score for a second straight game, you’re going to lose. That’s the case whether Lugo or Diaz pitches.

    Taijuan Walker Great, Defense Better

    While we’re seeing pitchers struggling after MLB declaring they’re cracking down on sticky substances, Taijuan Walker just went out there and had a big start against the Chicago Cubs. It was the best start from the best free agent signing.

    Over 7.0 innings, Walker allowed two earned on five hits and zero walks while he had a career high 12 strikeouts. The only blemish was a third inning two run homer by Javier Baez.

    Walker partially had a good start because there was excellent defense behind him. Dominic Smith made a leaping catch into the wall robbing Willson Contreras in the third. Jonathan Villar went in the hole and made the play on a ball Joc Pederson hit against the shift.

    After the Cubs scored their two in the top of the third, the Mets returned serve. Villar drew a one out walk against Alec Mills. After Smith hit a two out double, Pete Alonso tied the score with a two out single.

    The next time Alonso stepped to the plate in the fifth he had the opportunity to break the game open. Mills was knocked out of the game, and Cubs reliever, Rex Brothers loaded the bases.

    Notably, Smith had a very tough at-bat. After falling down 0-2, he stayed alive, and he drew a walk.

    For some reason, even with Brothers losing the zone and falling behind 2-0 to Alonso, Alonso got aggressive. Luckily, Alonso hit a sacrifice fly scoring Villar and putting the Mets ahead 3-2.

    Seth Lugo breezed through the Cubs in the eighth, and with Edwin Diaz unavailable, Lugo was being called upon to convert a six out save.

    With the Mets rallying in the eighth, that meant Lugo would bat for himself. He went to sacrifice runners to second and third, but he popped up the bunt. Anthony Rizzo let it drop to try to turn the double play.

    The plan almost worked. The problem is Lugo busted it out of the box, and Sergio Alcantara dropped the ball. It’s hard to know how much it tired Lugo, and maybe it didn’t at all, but Lugo lost some velocity in the ninth.

    Certainly, Lugo struggled in the ninth. It started with a Contreras single, and Jake Marisnick came on as a pinch runner. Eric Sogard then hit a single into the gap.

    Kevin Pillar did well to prevent the ball from going into the gap. He made a strong throw back to the infield which normally would have frozen the runners, but Cubs third base coach and perpetual Mets killer Willie Harris got aggressive sending Marisnick.

    Luis Guillorme came across, fielded the relay throw, and made a lighting fast transfer as he threw a strike to James McCann. That was a huge play to keep the tying run from scoring.

    Lugo might’ve been on fumes, but he had enough left in the tank to strike out Alcantara to end the game. With that, the Mets won another tight game, and they once again did it with pitching and defense.

    Game Notes: The Mets were the only team to offer Walker a contract this offseason.

    20/20 Hindsight: Mets Better Than Padres

    For all the talk about the San Diego Padres this year, a depleted New York Mets team just took the season series:

    1. People keep telling us to appreciate Jacob deGrom and not take him for granted. Not sure why because every Mets fan absolutely venerates him.

    2. One of these days, deGrom is going to have a perfect game. It’s just going to happen.

    3. Next time deGrom departs a game early, the reaction should be calm. He’s listening to his body, the Mets are listening to him, and they’re all just getting him ready to dominate in October . . . which he will.

    4. While we’re told not to under appreciate deGrom, his sheer greatness is actually overshadowing Marcus Stroman who has been great this year.

    5. Give credit where it is due, Joey Lucchesi has absolutely turned around his season. He wants a chance to go through a lineup a third time, and sooner or later, he probably should get that chance.

    6. Not enough credit is being given to Luis Rojas and Jeremy Hefner for the job they’re doing.

    7. Of course, it was a poor decision to leave in Jeurys Familia that long and to bring in Jacob Barnes in that spot. However, when you’re short bad and indefensible decisions like that are going to happen.

    8. The question does need to be asked – if the Mets are so reticent to use Barnes, why is he still on the team?

    9. Seeing Seth Lugo back to Lugoat form, you’re further convinced this team is going to win the World Series.

    10. People can dismiss what Chris Paddack said all they want, but he does seem to have Pete Alonso‘s number.

    11. Dominic Smith really needs to pick it up. Sooner or later, this team will get healthy, and he’s going to be in peril of losing playing time.

    12. It’s great to see Luis Guillorme back healthy and performing wizardry in the field.

    13. Months later, he may no longer be on the roster, but people should remember how Jose Peraza held down the fort and each and every single one of his homers gave the Mets a lead.

    14. He’s probably not the best option, but Jonathan Villar has done everything the Mets could’ve asked. He’s been better than anyone could’ve reasonably expected, and at this point, the third base job should be his.

    15. Of course, Billy McKinney is dealing with a sore knee and needed to miss a game. This would’ve be the 2021 Mets if that didn’t happen.

    16. Tomas Nido has started struggling at the plate once he stopped being the everyday catcher, but James McCann is thriving.

    17. More than what they’re doing at the plate, the Mets pitchers are thriving while throwing to both of these catchers. So long as the catchers are maximizing pitcher performances, they’re doing a great job.

    18. On the topic of catchers, if Francisco Alvarez hits a huge homer, let him do a bat flip. Criticize him when he celebrates and the ball doesn’t go out, which is something that hasn’t happened yet.

    19. People may want to get rid of the DH, but deGrom has more RBI than earned runs allowed.

    20. In case you haven’t noticed, it’s June 14, and the Mets are over .500 so far this month.

    Game Recaps

    Jacob deGrom Provides Thrills and Chills

    Mets Prove Power Rankings Pure Trash

    Jacob Barnes Wrong But –