A night after things got Utley, the Mets had their Familia fall apart. Jeurys Familia got hit by more than the pun gun as he came into a tie game in the ninth and gave up two runs on two hits and two walks, blowing a chance for the Mets to get a rare win in a Clayton Kershaw start after they had just evened the score the previous inning.
The Mets still haven't beaten Kershaw during the regular season. Sporting a 21-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio to this point in the year, he was his usual dominant self, as he struck out 10—helping along both Yoenis Cespedes and Juan Lagares to the hat-trick for the evening. Curtis Granderson led off the game with a double to offer some early hope of vulnerability, but Kershaw shrugged it off and set down the next 11 Mets in order, six by strikeout.
Meanwhile, Bartolo Colon did a nice job scattering seven hits over six innings, allowing just two runs. The first run of the game came home amidst raised eyebrows when supervillian Chase Utley scored after protege Corey Seager slid late and past second base to break up a potential inning-ending double play. The Mets challenged the play, and even though Seager was "not able to remain on the base" and "failed to attempt to remain on base after completion of the slide"—which are the words of an MLB memo earlier this year talking about what can get you called out on a takeout slide—and the two teams on the field were the very same ones that involved in the contentious play that the rule was made for, and the most deplorable guy who the rule is named after actually scored on this play—it was deemed a valid slide and no double play was awarded. I guess you can call this the "ennh, close enough" ancillary to the Utley rule. Take a look at the play yourself so you may be further educated on what is a legal slide moving forwards.
The Dodgers got another run on an Adrian Gonzalez RBI single to make it 2-0 and Kershaw had only allowed two baserunners into the sixth inning. Yet things suddenly looked up when Asdrubal Cabrera waited out a high curve and smacked it just over the left-field wall to cut the lead in half at 2-1.
With Kershaw's pitch count mounting, Kevin Plawecki took a pitch the other way for a single to lead off the eighth. After futility infielder Eric Campbell flew out, pinch-hitter Michael Conforto roped a liner to center that was also caught, but Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts decided his ace was done at 114 pitches with one out left to get.
He brought in the lefty Adam Liberatore to face Curtis Granderson, and the Grandyman ripped a drive to deep right, sending Yasiel Puig crashing into the fence while the ball rolled away for a game-tying triple. The crowd, which had already been feeling its oats often during the evening, was in full throat and anticipating the completion of the comeback.
Unfortunately, it's too bad that Granderson didn't get a chance to bail out his buddy Familia again in the ninth. The Mets' closer got his fastball up to 99 mph and only gave up one hard hit ball, but it was a leadoff single to the scuffling Kike Hernandez on a fat slider. Fans were momentarily thrilled when a Familia sinker cut Utley's bat clean in half from tip to tip and induced a popout. But that clamor was short lived; you can get some idea of how Familia located tonight from his chart below:
Be sure not to miss that one green box that's off the bottom of the chart completely. The wheels started falling off with Seager at the plate and a 1-2 count. Familia threw six straight balls, missing badly on a 3-2 pitch to put runners on first and second, and then falling behind 3-0 on Justin Turner. He finally threw a strike, but then missed way outside for ball four, loading the bases for Gonzalez. The all-star first baseman fisted a soft liner that hit the dirt behind second base but was beyond anyone's reach; two runs scored and the air had been let out of the comeback. The Mets went down quietly in the ninth, leaving fans to endure a rough loss for the second straight night.
Luckily, we get a chance to wash the taste out of our mouths early today with a 1:10 start as Matt Harvey looks to get back on track against Robin Ventura's White Sox. Happy Memorial Day, and LGM.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winner: Curtis Granderson (+41.7% WPA)
Big losers: Jeurys Familia (-42.7% WPA), Yoenis Cespedes (-13.7% WPA), Eric Campbell (-12.8% WPA), Juan Lagares (-11.0% WPA)
Teh aw3s0mest play: Curtis Granderson's game-tying triple in the eighth, +38.5% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Adrian Gonzalez's go-ahead two-run single in the ninth, -22.7% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: -35.0% WPA
Total batter WPA: -15.0% WPA
GWRBI!: Adrian Gonzalez