It was a see-saw, infuriating game at Citizens Bank Park, but somehow the Mets walked away with a 7-6 win after eleven innings of stress.
Despite Noah Syndergaard not having his best night, the Mets held a one-run lead heading into the eighth inning. Justin Wilson had been warming up earlier in the game but Mickey Callway went with Jeurys Familia instead. Familia, of course. came in on a double switch and Pete Alonso was out of the game in favor of Dominic Smith.
From pitch number one, Familia had nothing. After a single and a walk to open the inning, Jeff McNeil started a fantastic a double play. Despite getting two huge outs, Familia walked the next two hitters to load the bases. Since the organization does not want Edwin Diaz used for more than three outs, Callaway turned to Robert Gsellman who walked in the tying run on four pitches.
Gsellman settled down after that but in the tenth lefty Luis Avilan was brought in to face five straight righty batters. The winning run made it to third base that inning, but perhaps miraculously, considering the southpaw’s numbers against right-handed batters, he made it through the inning with a strikeout by Segura to end it.
The Mets did not score in the top half of the tenth and one key at-bat was Dominic Smith against the lefty Adam Morgan. He struck out and nearly got tossed from the game when he threw his helmet in frustration.
In the next inning, Juan Lagares led off with an infield single and Brandon Nimmo followed with a walk. The only man left on the bench, Travis d’Arnaud, was strangely called upon to bunt instead of one of the pitchers who have more experience with it. d’Arnaud did not get the bunt down and ended up popping up to leave the runners where they were. With two-outs Michael Conforto was the Mets last hope at taking the lead. He hit a shot down the first base line that bounced away from Rhys Hoskins. Lagares never stopped running and Cesar Hernandez’s throw was way offline and the Mets took the 7-6 lead.
Diaz entered to face the heart of the Phillies lineup in the bottom of the inning. Eleven pitches later Bryce Harper, Hoskins, and J.T. Realmuto were all strikeout victims and the Mets somehow were victorious.
It wasn’t the smoothest game by all parties involved but there were some positive signs. All of the Mets’ runs scored in the third and fourth innings were scored with two-outs and they came against Aaron Nola. Wilson Ramos had the biggest hit in the third when his single brought home two runs. After the Phillies tied it 3-3, Robinson Cano again gave the Mets the lead with a two-run double.
Brandon Nimmo’s struggles to start the season have been well documented but recently he has been starting to come out of it. He looked good again when he blasted a home run off lefty reliever Jose Alvarez in the sixth.
Seth Lugo was another bright spot in the game. He pitched two innings, struck out two, and walked one. With the rest of the bullpen struggling, having Lugo look like the reliever from last season again would be a huge win for the ballclub.
The Mets came dangerously close to losing this game, and with the organization handcuffing the manager when it comes to Diaz, others in the bullpen seriously need to step up. Callaway is not blameless in how the game unfolded, but still managed to walk away with a win and reclaim first place in the National League East.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big winners: Brandon Nimmo +30%, Michael Conforto +25.1%, Edwin Diaz +19.2%, Seth Lugo +19.2%, Luis Avilan +13.3%, Jeff McNeil +11.2%
Big losers: Noah Syndergaard -31.8%, Amed Rosario -14.9%, Travis d’Arnaud -11.7%
Total pitcher WPA: 12.5%
Total batter WPA: +37.5%
Teh aw3s0mest play: Michael Conforto reaches on error in ninth
Teh sux0rest play: Jean Segura bases loaded walk in eighth