The Mets began their final road trip of 2018 in strong fashion, defeating the Red Sox 8-0 at Fenway Park, their first game in Boston in nine years. Hector Velazquez was due to start the game for the Sox, but he was scratched due to illness, leading to the Sox throwing, essentially a bullpen game.
The Mets got on the board in the first inning, when Michael Conforto and Jay Bruce hit back-to-back 2 out doubles to give the Mets an early 1-0 lead. In the top of the third, Amed Rosario led off the inning with a single. That would run spot starter William Cuevas from the game. New pitcher Robby Scot induced a Jeff McNeil fly out, before hitting Conforto with a pitch. With two men on, Bruce hit a three-run home run to further their lead.
McNeil extended the Met lead in the fourth inning, hitting a home run to right-center field off relief pitcher Brian Johnson (sadly, not the AC/DC vocalist), putting the Mets up 5-0. Johnson settled down after this, striking out four over his four and two-thirds innings of work.
Noah Syndergaard started for the Mets, and looked dominant. Over seven shutout innings, Syndergaard allowed only three hits, including two to Ian Kinsler. Syndergaard did walk three batters, but struck out six.
In the bottom of the seventh, Syndergaard’s velocity began to dip a bit, but he improvised. After Kinsler’s second hit, Syndergaard picked him off with a really nice move to first base. This felt cathartic after the three stolen bases earlier in the third inning, and with the general problems Syndergaard has had holding runners on over his career. One batter later, Jackie Bradley Jr scorched a line drive towards right center, but McNeil laid out to make a great catch to end the inning.
Tyler Thornburg pitched the eighth for the Sox. Brandon Nimmo led off the inning with a walk, before coming around to score on an absolutely crushed home run off the bat of Austin Jackson. One batter later, Rosario added a solo home run, the Met’s fourth home run of the night, to put the team up 8-0. Drew Pomeranz completed the inning for the Red Sox, after allowing an opposite field single to McNeil, by inducing a weak fly ball from Conforto.
Jerry Blevins came in to pitch the eighth for the Mets and, despite a single from Mookie Betts and a wild pitch, got through the inning unscathed. Tyler Bashlor pitched a perfect ninth inning to preserve the shutout.
Tomorrow afternoon, the Mets will have a bullpen game of their own, due to the double header on Thursday forcing a spot start from Corey Oswalt. Rick Porcello will take the bump for the Red Sox.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winners: Jay Bruce, +27,7% WPA, Noah Syndergaard, +27.2% WPA
Big losers: None
Teh aw3s0mest play: Jay Bruce’s three-run home run, +19.5% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Jackie Bradley Jr’s third-inning walk, -3.9% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: +27.5 WPA%
Total batter WPA: +22.5% WPA
GWRBI!: Jay Bruce