A gloomy afternoon in Queens, just mere hours after losing their best offensive player to season ending surgery, doesn’t seem to be a likely spot for a genuinely optimistic win. But that is exactly what happened today, when the Mets toppled the Padres, 6-4, to take their first series victory since May.
Corey Oswalt started for the Mets, gaining his first major league win for his five innings of work. In the second inning, Oswalt got into a little bit of trouble when he gave up singles to Eric Hosmer and Manuel Margot to start off the inning. Freddy Galvis grounded into a double play, but Hosmer scored, putting the Padres up 1-0.
Oswalt would settle down, not allowing a base runner in the third inning, and managed to strand the two walks he gave up in the fourth. In the fifth inning, an Austin Hedges solo home run put the Mets down 2-0, but Oswalt escaped more trouble when Travis Jankowski was picked off first base to end the inning.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Mets’ offensive heated up. Jose Bautista led off the inning with a walk, and then was moved up to second on a Michael Conforto ground out. Kevin Plawecki then singled him home in the next at bat, giving the Mets their first run of the game. After a Brandon Nimmo ground out, three straight singles by Jose Reyes, pinch hitter Phillip Evans, and Amed Rosario brought in three more runs, putting the Mets up 4-2.
Wilmer Flores led off the sixth inning with a walk, and then was driven home by a Bautista two-run home run. Those insurance runs would prove necessary, as Tim Peterson, in his second inning of relief, gave up a two-run home run to Galvis in the bottom of the seventh.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Jeff McNeil had his second career plate appearance, and walked on nine pitches. Of course, he could have had four plate appearances had he started at third base, but that’s another story.
Anthony Swarzak completed a six-out save to put the game away for the Mets. It is almost unfathomable that the team hasn’t won a series since May, but here we are. Hopefully, more good baseball is on the way.
That said, the Mets are heading to Pittsburgh for a series against one of the hottest teams in baseball. Steven Matz will start the first game of the series for the Mets, taking on Nick Kingham of the Pirates.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winners: Amed Rosario, +17.0% WPA, Phil Evans, +16.2% WPA, Anthony Swarzak, +13.9% WPA, Jose Bautista, +10.8% WPA
Big losers: None! Huzzah!
Teh aw3s0mest play: Amed Rosario’s fifth inning single, +22.9% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Austin Hedges’s solo home run, -12.3% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +14.2% WPA
Total batter WPA: +35.8% WPA
GWRBI!: Jose Bautista