Things you should know about tonight's game...
1) Steven Matz was roughed up for seven runs -- six earned -- on seven hits and two walks while striking out four in 3 1/3 innings. He needed 40 pitches to get through the first when he allowed a three-run homer to Gary Sanchez. Matz was removed after loading the bases and allowing a two-run double to Brett Gardner in the fourth. Sanchez singled home two more runs off Chasen Bradford that were charged to his ledger.
2) Curtis Granderson hit a grand slam in the ninth and Matt Reynolds had an RBI single that drove in the Mets' first run in the seventh.
3) AJ Ramos, Hansel Robles and Bradford combined for 5 2/3 scoreless innings of relief.
Postgame reaction from Michael Baron...
With the Mets playing with a short and fragmented roster, they proved to be helpless against their crosstown rival as they were swept right out of this Subway Series.
As for tonight, this one fell right on the starting pitcher yet again, knocking the Mets out before they even swung the bat.
While there's little doubt Matz is dealing with physical challenges on the mound, he could have an equal number of mental issues as well. There's no question his fastball command is terrible, his change-up is ineffective and his slider is non-existent. But his struggles clearly get compounded by visible aggravation after he fails to execute, and it disables him from competing. Once that happens, the other team just licks their chops to eat him alive, which is exactly what the Yankees did to him tonight.
Terry Collins has talked a lot since 2015 about Matz needing to learn the difference between being hurt and not feeling great while dealing with the latter to pitch effectively. But if he can't deal with the mental and physical stresses in-game, he can't be out there until he can. Perhaps a mental break while letting his body rest is what he needs, but it's on him to take the next step and maintain his composure in the middle of the field, regardless of how he's feeling. >> To follow Baron on Twitter, click here.
News and notes...
The Mets dropped all four games to the Yankees for the second season-series sweep in the 21-year history between the two clubs. The 2003 club lost all six games. The Mets beat the Yankees in all four meetings in 2013. They are 46-66 all-time against their crosstown rivals.
Matz (2-7) is 0-6 with a 10.19 ERA in his last eight starts and has not won in his previous nine appearances dating back to June 28. Thursday marked the fourth time in eight starts he has failed to pitch at least five innings and the fifth instance he's allowed at least five runs.
The grand slam was the seventh of Granderson's career and his first since April 22, 2016 against the Braves.
Highlights from the game...
The Mets (53-66) welcome the Marlins (58-61) to Citi Field for a three-game set beginning Friday night at 7 p.m. on SNY.
Chris Flexen (2-1, 7.02 ERA, 2.10 WHIP) opens the series with Miami going for his third consecutive win. The 23-year-old allowed two runs over five innings to defeat the Phillies on Sunday in his fourth Major League start. Flexen has never faced the Marlins.
Justin Nicolino (1-1, 4.56 ERA 1.83 WHIP) makes his second start since returning from the minors. The southpaw picked up the win against the Rockies last Saturday, allowing one earned run over 5 1/3 innings. Nicolino is 0-1 with a 5.29 ERA in five career appearances, including three starts, against the Mets.