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Mets vs. Marlins recap: Mets sweep Marlins on Harvey Day, but lose two key pieces

Matt Harvey didn't have his best stuff, but a big fourth inning from the offense downed the Marlins.

Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

It was hard not to be enthusiastic about today's game. After winning seven straight, the Mets had a chance to do something they had never done before—sweep the Marlins in a four-game series. With Matt Harvey heading to the mound, Citi Field was again packed to see the phenom in action. What the fans would see today was the Mets move atop the National League's standings, but lose two key cogs in the process.

After the Marlins grabbed an early run on a replay-reviewed double play ball, where the throw from Daniel Murphy to Lucas Duda was ruled to be late, Matt Harvey locked down the Marlins despite not having electric stuff. While the Marlins' bats were limited to softly hit singles, the Mets erupted for seven runs in the bottom of the fourth.

After the Mets loaded the bases off of a wild Tom Koehler, Daniel Murphy and Juan Lagares were able to slap singles to get the Mets on the board, before Ruben Tejada crushed a ball out to left-center. Marcel Ozuna seemed to take a strange route to the drive, which fell and cleared the bases. Travis d'Arnaud added to the fun with another RBI single, and here were the Mets, leading 7-1, with their ace on the mound, and the goodwill of the past two weeks seemed present once again.

Matt Harvey told reporters after Sunday's game that he had been ill, but still wanted to start. Maybe it was the illness that precluded Harvey from having a stellar outing, but regardless, he still managed to work his way into the seventh inning, having given up only one run. It was an unusual day for Harvey, as he managed to strike seven out, but also let up eight hits, which bit Harvey as he ran into some seventh-inning trouble.

Harvey put the first two men he faced on, and Adeiny Hechavarria made him pay, as he lined a single to bring in a run and end Harvey's afternoon. Jerry Blevins came on in relief, and promptly got whacked on the arm by a Dee Gordon line drive. Blevins's arm was broken, and the goodwill suddenly evaporated.

After Blevins was removed, the Mets' issues only got worse. Alex Torres came into the game and threw a wild pitch that gave the Marlins another run. He got Christian Yellich to strikeout, which ended the threat. The Mets, however, ran into trouble of a different sort in the bottom of the inning, when Travis d'Arnaud was struck on the hand by a Brand Hand fastball. d'Arnaud winced as he walked up the first-base line, eventually doubling over before he was taken out of the game and sent for x-rays. The Mets were again handed bad news, as d'Arnaud's hand was broken.

Buddy Carlyle then came in for the Mets—with just six outs to get—and gave up a double to Giancarlo Stanton and two singles to load the bases. Back-to-back sacrifice flies by the Marlins brought the score to 7-6. Suddenly an all-too-familiar feeling was being broadcast by this team.

Maybe in past years the Mets would have lost a game like this. Perhaps it would have just been another signature loss to the Marlins to hang over Mets fans' heads. But not today, as Carlyle closed the door on the Marlins' scoring with a strikeout of Hechavarria, and Jeurys Familia was brought on to start the ninth. After Familia issued a walk to start the frame, he generated a bunt attempt and two ground balls, and the Mets had won their eighth straight.

It wasn't a great performance by the Mets today, and may end up being a costly one. Blevins had been arguably the most consistent member of the bullpen in the early part of the year, and Travis d'Arnaud was having an excellent first month of the season, but the Mets won again and now have the best record in the National League.

Many writers and critics opined that the Mets would need a fast start if they were serious about contending this year, and here they are at 10-3, with back-to-back sweeps of division rivals and a series win over another. Even if the enthusiasm for the fast start is tempered by the losses of d'Arnaud and Blevins, the Mets have shown that they can still score runs with starters out or sitting, and that will go a long way if they hope to keep up their winning trajectory.

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Win Probability Added


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Big winners: Jeurys Familia, +13.6% WPA, Juan Lagares, +12.4% WPA, Daniel Murphy +10.7% WPA
Big losers: Eric Campbell, -12.7% WPA, Buddy Carlyle, -6.2% WPA, Matt Harvey, -5.2% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Daniel Murphy's single in the fourth, +13.6% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Reid Brignac's walk in the eighth, +11.3% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +10.1% WPA
Total batter WPA: +39.9% WPA
GWRBI!: Travis d'Aranud