The back end of the Mets’ rotation, which has often plagued them this season, had a somewhat improved week, but several members of the Mets’ bullpen had down weeks. Even though the Mets have done a lot of losing this week, other than the shellacking at the hands of the Brewers on Saturday, the games have mostly been close, which speaks to the fact that the bullpen has shouldered the brunt of the losing this week.
Another deGrom start, another deGrom gem wasted. It’s becoming an all too familiar refrain. But deGrom continues to put up Cy Young caliber numbers and this week was no exception, as he twirled seven brilliant innings on Wednesday, surrendering no runs on four hits, striking out eight.
deGrom was forced to watch that effort squandered away again, this time by Jeurys Familia, who gave up two runs in the ninth and blew the save, his fourth blown save of the season. He did, however, notch the save in Monday night’s victory, pitching a scoreless ninth in relief of Jason Vargas.
Jason Vargas had a very mixed bag of a week, returning to the rotation after having his start skipped last week. He pitched very well against the Marlins on Monday, throwing five scoreless innings and giving up just two hits. However, when facing a more formidable offense in the Brewers, Vargas was not up to the task and looked very much the same as he had in his previous starts. He gave up five runs on six hits in just three innings of work on Saturday.
Vargas wasn’t the only Mets pitcher who got pounded in Saturday’s game. Jacob Rhame was tagged with the loss after he gave up two additional runs after replacing Vargas. However, this poor outing was preceded by two good ones earlier in the week. He pitched a scoreless inning in Tuesday’s game and another scoreless inning in Thursday’s game, allowing just one hit between those two outings.
A.J. Ramos also got hit hard on Saturday, to the tune of three runs including a home run in just 2⁄3 of an inning. It was just the latest in a string of recent bad outings he has had. He walked in the winning run in Friday’s walk-off loss and gave up two runs in the eighth inning of Tuesday’s game. Ramos has been up and down all season, but this is as bad as he has ever looked and it turns out that was probably due to injury. He has been placed on the disabled list with a right shoulder strain.
Chris Flexen, fresh up from Triple-A, continued to pour gasoline on the fire on Saturday. He gave up a whopping seven runs—only three of them earned—on eight hits. He has since been optioned back to Las Vegas.
The only pitcher to not get knocked around on Saturday was Jerry Blevins, who threw 1 1⁄3 scoreless innings. However, his other outings this week were far less successful, as his lost season continues. On Friday and on Sunday, Blevins was brought in to face a particular hitter and failed both times to get the job done, giving up a run in the latter outing and taking the loss.
Zack Wheeler started Sunday’s game and didn’t have his best outing, but managed to get through six, giving up four runs on six hits and striking out six. Wheeler fared somewhat better on Tuesday against the Marlins. He gave up seven hits, but only one of the three he gave up was earned, as the Mets played some shoddy defense behind him. He went six innings and struck out nine.
Even Robert Gsellman, who had been so reliable of late, had a down week. In relief of Zack Wheeler on Sunday, he gave up two runs in just 2⁄3 of an inning. On Friday night, he was able to escape a dicey ninth inning thanks in part to a base running blunder by the Brewers, but the winning run (walked in by A.J. Ramos) in the tenth was ultimately charged to Gsellman’s ledger for having put him on base.
Noah Syndergaard was the starter in Friday night’s game and gave up three runs early in the game, but settled in and would ultimately retire eight batters in a row to end his night, five of them via the strikeout. He struck out eight in total over six innings of work.
Paul Sewald combined with Gsellman and Blevins to pitch a poor seventh inning on Sunday, allowing the go-ahead run on a double to Domingo Santana. He did manage to pitch a scoreless eighth after that, however. He also threw two scoreless innings in relief of Steven Matz in Thursday’s win and 2⁄3 of an inning on Monday in which he surrendered a hit and a walk.
Steven Matz put together one of his better starts of the season on Thursday, throwing six scoreless innings and scattering four hits. He still isn’t striking batters out at a very high clip though; he struck out just three batters in the outing, while also walking three.
Seth Lugo remains one of the most reliable members of the Mets bullpen. He threw four scoreless innings this week—one in the eighth in relief of deGrom on Wednesday before Familia went on to blow the save, two in relief of Syndergaard on Friday, and one in Monday’s victory in Miami in relief of Vargas.