The Mets won last night in one of the most exciting pitching duels in recent memory. Both starters put up double-digit strikeouts, Daniel Murphy crushed a solo home run, and David Wright came up with a big two-out RBI single to give the Mets a couple of much-needed insurance runs.
But there were a few moments that went unnoticed in all the excitement. Whether it was a well-earned walk or a critical play in the field, the Mets did a lot of things well, and they did them at the right time.
David Wright's first inning walk
When Curtis Granderson swung at the first pitch from Clayton Kershaw for a fly out to right field in the first inning, Mets fans may have worried about having to watch nine full innings of Kershaw dominance. But Wright followed up Granderson's quick at-bat with a great plate appearance that forced Kershaw to throw 12 pitches, culminating in a walk that prolonged the inning. Kershaw eventually threw 22 pitches in the inning, partially contributing to his seventh-inning exit that paved the way for Wright's two-run single off of Pedro Baez.
Jacob deGrom's sacrifice bunt
Also contributing to those seventh-inning heroics was a perfectly executed sacrifice bunt down the third base line from deGrom that moved Lucas Duda and Ruben Tejada to third and second, respectively. With the open base available and Kershaw pitching a little more cautiously, Curtis Granderson was able to work a seven-pitch walk that loaded the bases, ousted Kershaw from the game, and brought up David Wright. If deGrom had struck out or, worse, grounded into a double play, the run given up by Tyler Clippard in the eighth inning might have sent the game into extra frames.
Daniel Murphy's diving stop in the ninth inning
With one out in the ninth and Jeurys Familia on the mound, Mets-killer Jimmy Rollins hit a sharp ground ball to the right side of the infield. Murphy, playing first base because of a double switch in the eighth inning, made a diving stop to rob Rollins of a hit that would have brought the tying run to the plate. As much as Mets fans like to criticize Murphy's fielding—often justifiably—he has been part of some great plays this year, and this one helped forestall a dangerous situation with power-hitting Joc Pederson coming to the plate.