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Mets vs. Padres Recap: Flexen Flops

The Mets couldn’t overcome a rough second inning

New York Mets v San Diego Padres Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images

On a day when the Mets already lost their Good first baseman, they also dropped the series finale to the San Diego Padres, losing 7-5 at Petco Park. As has been the case more this season than anyone would’ve thought, the starting pitching dug the Mets into a hole that even a late offensive flourish couldn’t save them from.

LOSE, 7-5

The game started off with a Michael Conforto ground rule double on the first pitch of the ballgame. Luis Perdomo then walked Asdrubal Cabrera, and a fielder’s choice by Yoenis Cespedes put runners on the corners for Jay Bruce. Bruce then hit into a fielder’s choice, scoring Conforto. A single by Wilmer Flores put two men on, but Curtis Granderson struck out to end the inning.

Chris Flexen started for the Mets in his major league debut, and lasted only three innings. Flexen got ahead of the first batter, Manuel Margot, before an 0-2 fastball became a souvenir on the third pitch of the game. The rest of the inning was not much better for Flexen, though he escaped with no more runs scoring. Carlos Asuaje walked, Wil Myers singled, and there still wasn’t a recorded out. Hunter Renfroe grounded out for the first out of the inning, moving the runners up, and that’s when things got really wacky.

Cory Spangenberg grounded back to the pitcher, and Flexen came home with the ball, and Asuaje was called safe at the plate. The Mets challenged, and the call was overturned. The next batter was Jabari Blash, and Spangenberg attempted a steal of second. Travis d’Arnaud made the throw to second, which wasn’t in time, but allowed Myers to attempt to steal home. Wilmer Flores threw the ball home and, again, Myers was initially called safe, but the call was overturned after a challenge.

The second inning wouldn’t be any prettier for Flexen. Blash singled to center, Dusty Coleman was hit by an 0-2 pitch, and Luis Torrens walked to load the bases before an out was recorded. After striking out Perdomo, Margot hit a double over the head of Conforto, and a throwing error by Conforto led to three runs scoring. Two more walks and a single over the next two innings would do it for Flexen’s debut.

The Mets continued to make solid contact against Perdomo, making hard outs and putting men on base, but stranded a small village on the basepaths. This wasn’t helped by Tyler Pill allowing a three-run home run to Coleman in the fifth, putting the Mets down 7-1.

In the seventh, the Mets attempted to come back. Matt Reynolds singled to start the inning, and the next two batters grounded into fielder’s choices, eventually ending up with Conforto on first base with two outs. Asdrubal Cabrera singled, Cespedes doubled, knocking in Conforto, and then Bruce hit a two-run homer that brought the score to 7-5.

The Mets couldn’t muster any more offense and, since they were playing a man short due to the Lucas Duda trade, had to resort to pinch hitting with both Jacob deGrom and Steven Matz. Of the last six batters of the game, only one, Conforto, put the ball in play, and the Mets limped to a series split.

The Mets travel to Seattle to start a three-game set with the Mariners today. Rafael Montero gets the ball, and hopes to follow up on his quality start from last weekend against Ariel Miranda.

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Win Probability Added

Mets vs Padres 7/28/17 WPA

What’s WPA?

Big winners: None
Big losers: Chris Flexen, -30.1% WPA, Yoenis Cespedes, -10.6% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Jay Bruce’s home run
Teh sux0rest play: Manuel Margot’s second inning double
Total pitcher WPA: -32.8% WPA
Total batter WPA: -17.2% WPA
GWRBI!: Dusty Coleman