Things you should know about tonight's game...
1) Jacob deGrom allowed one run, four hits and a walk with seven strikeouts in eight innings to notch his seventh win of the season. The right-hander became the first Mets starter to complete eight innings in three consecutive starts since Johan Santana in 2010. DeGrom also singled in three at-bats to raise his average to .294.
2) Jay Bruce's RBI single snapped a 1-1 tie in the top of the eighth to plate Curtis Granderson, who led off the inning with a triple. Wilmer Flores added a two-out run-scoring double to extend the Mets' lead to 3-1 with his second RBI of the day, and Michael Conforto's pinch-hit RBI single scored Jose Reyes, who led off the ninth with triple.
3) Flores' solo homer in the fourth, his seventh of the season, was the game's only run until Brandon Belt led off the seventh with a solo shot of his own against deGrom.
Post-game reaction from Michael Avallone...
Watching deGrom pitch when he is on and in sync is really a pleasure. He doesn't have the brute strength of a Noah Syndergaard or what Matt Harvey displayed back in 2013, but he knows how to pitch better than any other starter on the staff. Seriously, if Syndergaard learns how to "pitch" as well as deGrom, he might be as unbeatable as any pitcher in the game. But that's a story for a different day. Today was all about deGrom.
After being blasted in consecutive starts earlier this month, the right-hander has pitched eight or more innings in each of his last three starts. More importantly, he's doing so with minimal difficulty in both stress and number of pitches thrown, which had been a problem all season for him...and for every other Mets starter, for that matter.
Whether it's just a really good stretch for a really good pitcher or if he's finally turned the corner with his seemingly endless battle with mechanics, these past three starts have been the deGrom of 2014-2015. The 28-year-old is working all quadrants of the strike zone with pinpoint precision. The reintroduction of his changeup has helped immensely and his fastball continues to hum along at nearly 96 mph on average. He's just locked in.
It may be too late for the Mets to make noise this season, but seeing deGrom back at his elite level is a good sign, and hopefully it remains that way... >> To follow Michael on Twitter, click here.
News and notes...
The Mets won their second straight and improved to 23-16 at AT&T Park since 2006. New York was 4-14 in its first 18 games at San Francisco's waterfront ballpark from 2000-2005, including an 0-10 start.
Flores' home run was the Mets' 42nd in June, three shy of the franchise record for most-ever hit in one month.
DeGrom improved to 17-4 with a 1.69 ERA in 33 career starts during the day. His ERA in matinee outings is the lowest in Major League history (min. 175 innings). DeGrom has surrendered two earned runs on 12 hits and seven walks with 19 strikeouts in 25 innings (0.72 ERA) over his last three starts.
Asdrubal Cabrera had two hits and two walks after going 3-for-5 on Friday night in his return from the disabled list.
The Mets (33-41) go for the three-game sweep of the Giants (27-50) at AT&T Park on Sunday afternoon at 4 p.m. on SNY.
Rafael Montero (0-4, 6.49 ERA, 2.09 WHIP) moves back into the rotation to make his first start since May 25. The 26-year-old has a 10.80 ERA and 2.70 WHIP in two starts this season, but he's allowed one run and three hits over 6 2/3 innings in two relief outings since his recall from Triple-A Las Vegas. Montero has pitched just two-thirds of an inning against San Francisco in his career.
Matt Moore (3-7, 5.82 ERA 1.58 WHIP) closes the series for the Giants coming off his first win since May 13. The southpaw surrendered three runs over seven innings of a 6-3 victory against the Braves on Tuesday. In between, Moore was 1-5 with a 6.47 ERA in six starts. He allowed three runs in 5 1/3 innings during a no-decision on May 8 in his only career start against New York.