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Tempers briefly flare in otherwise listless loss to Rockies

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Jacob deGrom’s strong performances continue to be wasted

Colorado Rockies v New York Mets Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The Mets took the field on Friday for the first game in a three-game set against the Rockies with their ace on the mound, so they had every reason to hope that the series would start off on a good note. But as has too often been the case in games Jacob deGrom has started, the offense could not get anything going, and the bullpen let a tight game get away from them, and the boys in orange and blue fell to the boys in purple 5-1.

Little of note occurred in the first two innings, as both teams went scoreless in spite of one hit for the Rockies and two hits—a Michael Conforto single in the first and an Amed Rosario double in the second—for the Mets. Colorado broke through against deGrom in the third, however, as Tony Wolters hit a one-out single to center and came around to score one batter later on a double off the bat of Raimel Tapia. Following another scoreless inning by the Amazins, the Rockies struck again in the top of the fourth, as three singles off the bats of David Dahl, Daniel Murphy, and Ian Desmond brought home yet another run and gave the Rockies a two-run lead which would prove to be insurmountable.

The teams subsequently endured two hitless innings before the Mets finally managed to bring a run to the plate in the sixth, as Michael Conforto socked his twelfth bomb of the year to right field to cut the lead to 2-1. Left fielder Dominic Smith immediately followed with an opposite field single, which gave the brief impression that the bats were finally coming to life. Wilson Ramos quickly ended those dreams, however, by grounding into a double play to end the inning. Thus ended Rockies’ starter Antonio Senzatela’s night, as he finished with only one run allowed in six innings despite not recording a single strikeout.

Following an impressive inning from Robert Gsellman in which he struck out the side and yet another scoreless inning for the Mets, Mickey Callaway brought in Drew Gagnon to pitch the eighth. Things quickly fell apart at this point, beginning with a leadoff single to Tapia. One batter later, Dahl struck a two-run homer to right field, which was followed one batter later by yet another homer to right off the bat of former friend and current arch-nemesis Murphy.

Things quickly took an interesting turn after this, as the very next at-bat resulted in a 91 MPH fastball which struck the back of Desmond, who immediately took issue with the timing of the hit-by-pitch. The rest of the Rockies’ dugout took issue with it as well, and they quickly came running out to the field, which resulted in the Mets’ dugout and both bullpens hurrying to the fray as well. Thankfully, no further acts of aggression transpired from this heated moment, and following another runner reaching base as the result of an error from Juan Lagares, Callaway ended Gagnon’s suffering by bringing in Wilmer Font to end the inning.

Another 1-2-3 inning by the offense brought on the ninth, and Hector Santiago came in to pitch. Aside from a double off the bat of Trevor Story, he retired the Rockies without much incident, and the Mets came on for their final turn at-bat. They then once again provided the brief illusion of life, as Smith sliced a double to left field with one out. Following a deep fly ball out to right field off the bat of Ramos, Todd Frazier managed a soft infield single just past Wade Davis’s grasp to bring Rosario up to bat with the chance to bring the tying run to the plate. But Rosario quickly ended any thoughts of a remarkable comeback by grounding out to second to end the game.

With this loss, deGrom falls to 3-6 on the year, and the Mets drop down to three games below .500. They will turn to Steven Matz tomorrow night at 7:15 to try to make the series even at a game apiece.

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What’s WPA?

Big winners: Michael Conforto, +11.1% WPA
Big losers: Drew Gagnon, -20.3% WPA; Todd Frazier, -13.5% WPA; Pete Alonso, -10.9% WPA
Total pitcher WPA: -16.0% WPA
Total batter WPA: -34.0% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Michael Conforto solo homer in the sixth, +13.5% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: David Dahl two-run homer in the eighth, -14.7% WPA