The Mets fell to the Reds 3-2 on Saturday afternoon at Great American Ball Park, allowing the game-winning run to score in the eighth inning. >> Box score
Five Takeaways from Saturday's game
1) Zack Wheeler gave up two early runs, but he settled in nicely. The first three batters of the game reached off the right-hander, as a fielding error from Todd Frazier loaded the bases with nobody out. Aristides Aquino and Jose Iglesias then each recorded RBI singles. Wheeler would then retire the next two hitters to work his way out of any more trouble.
2) The Mets got on the board in the third inning after avoiding potential disaster. After Todd Frazier singled to get things started, Amed Rosario roped a ball into the right-center gap for a hit. Frazier was held at third, but Rosario kept running towards third anyway. The Reds got the ball to the plate, but Rosario was quickly able to scramble back to second base safely. Wheeler then grounded out to second, but Frazier came in to score the Mets' first run.
3) Wheeler then found himself in trouble again in the fifth. Joey Votto led off the inning with a double to left, just out of the reach of Jeff McNeil, and Eugenio Suarez followed with a single to give the Reds first-and-third with no one out. But to Wheeler's credit, he retired the next three hitters in order, including a big strikeout against Aquino, to get out of the inning unscathed. Wheeler went seven strong for the Mets, lowering his ERA under 4.00 (3.99) for the first time this season.
4) It wasn't a banner day for Mets hitters off of Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani. After the right-hander allowed just one hit over seven innings in his last start, he was tough to hit again on Saturday, allowing just three hits over six innings. He did allow the tying run to score in the fifth, though, as he hit Brandon Nimmo with a pitch in a bases loaded jam to force in a run.
5) In the eighth inning, Justin Wilson pitched himself into a jam, walking Jose Iglesias before Jose Peraza dropped a single into right. With two on and one out, the Mets turned to Seth Lugo, who struck out Curt Casali, making Lugo the fifth pitcher in Mets history to record 100 strikeouts as a reliever (Armando Benitez in 2000 was the most recent). The next batter up, Christian Colon, singled up the middle to give the Reds a 3-2 lead. An additional runner was thrown out at the plate, preventing a fourth run.
The Mets and Reds finish up their three-game series on Sunday afternoon at 1:10 p.m. at Great American Ball Park. Marcus Stroman (9-13, 3.21 ERA will toe the rubber for the Mets against fellow righty Trevor Bauer (11-12, 4.41 ERA), who was also acquired around the trade deadline.