The Mets allowed five runs in the seventh inning en route to a 6-1 loss to the Nationals Sunday afternoon in the final game before the All-Star break.
Things you should know about today's game...
1) The Mets entered the seventh inning tied, 1-1, but a trio of relievers allowed five runs on three hits, two walks and two hit-by-pitches. Anthony Swarzak (0-2) and Tim Peterson were each charged with two runs and Jerry Blevins -- who hit consecutive batters to force in a run -- allowed one.
2) Corey Oswalt turned in his second consecutive strong performance, limiting the Nationals to one run on two hits in five innings. The 24-year-old struck out one and did not walk a batter while tossing 40 of 59 pitches for strikes. Seth Lugo tossed a scoreless sixth and Tyler Bashlor loaded the bases with one out in the ninth but escaped without allowing a run.
3) Jose Reyes had two hits and drove in Michael Conforto with a groundout in the second for the Mets' only run. New York had two hits entering the ninth, before loading the bases on singles by Jose Bautista, Wilmer Flores and Reyes. Asdrubal Cabrera left the game in the top of the seventh with a sore right hand.
Michael Avallone, SNY.tv | Twitter |
And so ends what seems to be one of the longest first halves in recent memory for the Mets. It's a season that began with a renewed sense of optimism, buoyed quickly by a nine-game winning streak and an 11-1 start that gave hope 2018 would be different. Inconsistency followed over the next several weeks. A winless homestand to start May sent the Mets into a two-month cesspool of poor overall play, highlighted by what seemed like nightly blown leads, an historically bad offense and of course, injuries.
The Mets now embark on a five-day break to ponder just how exactly they became the fastest team in baseball history to go from 10 games over .500 to 10 games under. They will watch the All-Star Game with the most losses (55) by a Mets team since the infamous 1993 version stumbled their way to 60 on their path to 103 losses. The Mets will return to action Friday night against the crosstown-rival Yankees, who happen to be -- fairly or unfairly -- the club they are so often compared to -- never with good results. Lastly, the Mets will open the second half wondering how much longer a number of their teammates will be wearing the orange and blue. Are we seeing the final starts of Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard? It's pretty safe to say the likes of Jeurys Familia and Asdrubal Cabrera will soon put their Mets uniforms in mothballs, but who else waves goodbye?
It wasn't supposed to be this way, of course. This trade deadline was supposed to be where the Mets were back as buyers. Instead, they are fielding calls about two of the best pitchers in the game because of a combination of awful roster construction, poor play, bad luck and continued injuries. From 11-1 and visions of an exciting summer in Flushing to fighting off the Marlins -- who went into the season trying to lose -- for the worst record in the league. I take no pleasure in writing this. I'm a diehard Mets fan and have been since I first saw Dwight Gooden pitch at Shea Stadium as a five-year-old in 1984. But there is no sugarcoating anything that has happened since the second week of April.
All of this adds up to the worst Mets club prior to the All-Star break in a quarter-century ... and it definitely feels like it too.
News and notes...
The Mets' 55 losses are the most by the franchise prior to the All-Star break since the 1993 squad lost 60 games. New York was 39-47 at last year's All-Star break.
The Mets split the four-game series with the Nationals, which extended their stretch of series without a win to 16 straight (0-12-4). That is the club's longest such streak since the 1982 club sent a franchise record by going 18 consecutive series without a win.
New York is 19-47 (.288) against Washington at Citi Field since 2012, winning three of 20 series (3-16-1). They finished their homestand 5-6
Oswalt has surrendered six runs on eight hits and four walks while striking out 10 in 15 innings (3.60 ERA) over his last three starts.
Mets relievers came into the game having allowed four runs in their last 22 2/3 innings (1.59 ERA). They combined to surrender five runs -- all in the seventh -- over four frames Sunday.
The Mets (39-55) head into the All-Star break in last place in the N.L. East along with the Marlins 13 1/2 games behind the Phillies.
The Mets return to action on Friday night against the Yankees at Yankee Stadium.