In a game started by Jacob deGrom and Caleb Smith, it was not expected that the Mets would need to come back multiple times, but that is just what they did in an 8-6 win over Miami.
This game turned quickly in the fifth inning and both teams started throwing haymakers until the Mets finally got the knockout punch in the ninth.
On both sides of the ball, the Mets were just plodding along in the early innings. Wilmer Flores got the Mets on the board early with a RBI double, but Caleb Smith was able to limit the damage. They did eventually take a 3-0 lead with some help from Asdrubal Cabrera’s first home run of the night, but they never really put the hammer down, especially since deGrom did not look like himself.
The righty was mostly fine early on but he was not dominant, especially against a weak Marlins lineup. It was in the fifth inning that both luck and mistakes conspired against deGrom. The Marlins rallied when two ground balls hit to Todd Frazier were not turned into outs. The big blow came off the bat of Justin Bour who gave the Marlins their first lead with a two-run home run.
So far in this young season, the 2018 Mets might be down but they are never out. After getting stung by the Bour home run, they hit right back the next inning and tied it up. Frazier led off with a double and was aggressive against Derek Dietrich’s arm when he tagged up on a pop up and got to third with one out. His aggressiveness paid off since he was able to come home on Juan Lagares’s sacrifice fly.
Now off the hook, deGrom surprisingly came out the sixth and finished his night strong. He gave up the four runs and struck out six in his six innings of work. Not the best start but hopefully the best is still yet to come with the starting staff as a whole.
Jacob Rhame was one of the heroes on Sunday night, but he did not have the same luck against the Marlins. Bour struck again in the seventh with another two-run home run, and the chance at a historic start for the Mets seemed to leave the park along with the home run ball.
Due up for the Mets in the eighth was Wilmer Flores, Todd Frazier, and Asdrubal Cabrera. Both Flores and Cabrera are no strangers to dramatic home runs and once again both went yard in the eighth to tie the game.
Once more with the game tied, it was up to the bullpen to hold it. Rhame was unable to hold the Marlins in the seventh, but it became Hansel Robles’s task in the eighth. Robles did give up a long shot to Bryan Holaday that fooled Gary Cohen into thinking it was out. It was only a double and Robles was able to escape with the score still the same as when he entered.
Yoenis Cespedes was not having a good night. Still under the weather, he struck out three times against Marlins’ pitching. He would get the chance to redeem himself in the ninth when an error and a walk set up first and second with one out. Despite looking terrible all night, he was able to pull a ball down the line that third baseman Brian Anderson deflected, and both Amed Rosario and Michael Conforto hustled home to give the Mets the 8-6 lead they would not relinquish.
The hustle, aggressiveness, and resiliency that these 2018 Mets have displayed so far in this young season once again played a huge role in this victory, but there were other positives on display as well. Wilmer Flores hit the ball hard all night but he only got the start since a lefty was on the mound. The home run, however, came against a righty which was definitely a promising sign as he continues to prove he can hit right-handed pitching.
Michael Conforto remained in the lineup even though there was a lefty on the mound and he picked up two hits against the southpaw. He is off to a nice start since returning to the lineup and definitely seems like a star on the rise.
Aside from Rhame, the bullpen was once again effective. Sewald made his first appearance in awhile and retired the only batter he faced, and Jeurys Familia pitched a clean ninth to pick up the save and nail down the victory.
The winning streak is now up to seven, and at 9-1 they are off to their best start in franchise history. Let the good times roll.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winners: Asdrubal Cabrera 31.0%, Yoenis Cespedes +28.4%, Wilmer Flores 18.5%, Michael Conforto 13.7%, Hansel Robles +10.5%
Big losers: Jacob Rhame -29.3%, Jacob deGrom -18.5%
Teh aw3s0mest play: Yoenis Cespedes double in ninth
Teh sux0rest play: Justin Bour home run in seventh
Total pitcher WPA: -27.3%
Total batter WPA: +77.3%
GWRBI!: Yoenis Cespedes