The Mets will not be going 161-1 this season as they suffered their second defeat of the season to the Milwaukee Brewers.
Matt Harvey was on the mound for his third start of the year and had mixed results. After an easy first inning of work, throwing just 11 pitches and hitting 95 with his fastball, Harvey ran into trouble in each of the next four innings he pitched.
In the second inning, Harvey allowed a lead off double to Travis Shaw followed by a walk to Domingo Santana. After striking out Eric Sogard, Jonathan Villar came to the plate and hit a three-run homer down the left field line to give the Brewers a 3-0 lead. The homer did not look all too good off the bat, and at first appeared as if it was going to drift foul. The ball barley stayed fair and snuck over the left field wall. Harvey threw 30 pitches in the second, but was able to get out of the inning without surrendering any more damage.
On a night where there were fireworks after the game at Citi Field, the Mets’ offense could not provide any fireworks of their own. Opposing pitcher Chase Anderson went through the Mets’ lineup easily, retiring the first seven batters he faced. After Jose Lobaton drew a one-out walk, Matt Harvey grounded into an inning ending double play.
In the top of the fourth inning, the Brewers home run barrage this series continued as catcher Jett Bandy hit a solo homer, his first of the year. In the fifth, Ryan Braun led off the inning with a single and then stole second base. Harvey was able to work around this lead off single, striking out Travis Shaw and then getting both Santana and Sogard to ground out. Five innings was all Harvey was able to get through tonight, throwing 95 pitches. It is now 11 straight starts for him without throwing a single pitch in the sixth inning, a streak which dates back to May 28th of last season against the Pirates.
The Mets finally got their first hit of the night in the bottom half of the fifth. After a two-out walk by Todd Frazier, Amed Rosario singled up the middle to put runners at first and second. They were unable to capitalize on their first opportunity of the game as Jose Lobaton struck out swinging to end the inning.
Paul Sewald was the only positive for the Mets on the night. Sewald entered the game in the sixth inning in relief of Matt Harvey and pitched three perfect innings. In just his third game all season, Sewald struck out the side in the sixth inning and two more in the eighth. It was encouraging to see Sewald have such a strong outing after not seeing much work these first two weeks of the season.
The only run on the night for the Mets came in the sixth inning thanks to a Yoenis Cespedes bloop single. After Michael Conforto was hit by a pitch, Asdrubal Cabrera moved him into scoring position with a ground out. Cespedes was able to capitalize, driving in his 12th run of the season.
While in the midst of a outstanding pitching performance, Brewers manager Craig Counsell opted to take starting pitcher Chase Anderson out of the game in the bottom of the seventh inning with just 87 pitches. Though it was a puzzling move, it did not end up costing the Brewers as their bullpen was lights out in the 2.2 innings they pitched.
In the ninth inning, Hansel Robles came into the game for the Mets. Orlando Arcia hit a solo homer off of Robles, putting the cherry on top for the Brewers. In the last of the ninth, the Mets were not able to threaten as Josh Hader completed the six out save for Milwaukee.
The Mets will look to take the rubber game of the series tomorrow as Noah Syndergaard takes the mound against Jhoulys Chacin.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winners: None
Big losers: Matt Harvey, -21.7% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Yoenis Cespedes’ RBI single in the sixth inning; +4.8% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Jonathan Villar’s three-run homer in the third inning; -23.8% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: -19% WPA
Total batter WPA: -31% WPA
GWRBI!: Jonathan Villar