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Despite bullpen blunders, the Mets rack up their third straight win over the Marlins

Thank you Scooter [clap clap clapclapclap]

MLB: New York Mets at Miami Marlins Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets looked like they had this game in the bag early. A ‘rustyJacob deGrom didn’t give up a walk or an extra base hit, and some timely hitting gave the Mets the early lead. And yet, in the Metsiest way - that is to say, in a way that is almost too weird to imagine - the Marlins nearly took the game from the Mets in the eighth inning. But the Mets rallied to win the game 5-3 on a towering home run from one of their most consistent players. Phew.

Viewers saw both sides of J.D. Davis at third base in the first inning, with Davis making a great throw to beat Magneuris Sierra for the first out, and the airmailing a throw to allow Jesus Aguilar to reach on an error. Corey Dickerson then singled, putting men on first and second with one out. deGrom buckled down and struck out Matt Joyce and Brian Anderson to end the inning.

The Mets got on the board in the top of the second, starting with Pete Alonso dumping a single in front of Dickerson in left field. Luis Guillorme shot a double just over the third base bag, sending Alonso to third with just one out. Wilson Ramos then hit a long fly ball to right, allowing Alonso to tag up and score the game’s first run.

The Mets did not have many scoring chances tonight, with Pablo Lopez looking solid in his ___ innings of work. Their biggest missed opportunity came in the top of the sixth inning, when Brandon Nimmo led off the inning with a double, but was erased by a poor baserunning decision one batter later.

The top of the seventh began with a Dominic Smith double that dotted the right field foul line. After a Robinson Cano dribbled up the first base line moved Smith to third, and an eventual intentional walk to Pete Alonso, Guillorme drove in Smith with a single in the right-side hole. That would be it for Lopez, and James Hoyt relieved him, not allowing another Met to cross the plate in the 7th.

That would also be it for deGrom, who went six scoreless innings, giving up just four singles and striking out seven without allowing a walk. He was relieved by Jeurys Familia, who walked Francisco Cervelli to start the inning. Familia induced two straight ground balls following, but on the first, former Olympic speed skater Eddy Alvarez beat out a double play. On the second, Logan Forsythe placed a ball to the left of Davis at third, and though he dove to stop the ball, he could not get a throw off, allowing Forsythe to be safe at first.

Justin Wilson replaced Familia, and threw another ground ball and another failed double play. To be fair, it would be hard to double up pinch hitter Jonathan Villar, but it continued the trend of the inning. A wild pitch that got by Ramos let Alvarez score and moved the tying run up to second base. But Wilson went back to his cutter and struck out pinch hitter Monte Harrison to end the inning, up 2-1.

Josh D. Smith started the eighth for the Marlins, and after striking out Nimmo on a questionable call, hit Michael Conforto and walked Davis. This set up Dom Smith for a second double of the game, knocking in Conforto and giving the Mets an insurance run. Josh A. Smith relieved Josh D. Smith (confused yet?), and loaded the bases with a walk to Robinson Cano. Alonso topped a ball to short, where Alvarez came home with it to tag out Davis. Guillorme then rolled over one to second base to end the inning.

Dellin Betances took over in the eighth, and quickly gave up a base hit to Aguilar. A single from Matt Joyce put two on with one out. A ground out to third moved the tying runs to second and third. Betances walked Cervelli to load the bases before grazing Alvarez’s uniform shirt to bring in Miami’s second run.

After a shaky outing last night, Edwin Diaz entered with the bases loaded and two outs. Diaz started off Forsythe with three balls outside the zone, followed by a generous strike call which wound up being irrelevant, as he walked him on the next pitch. A strikeout to Villar ended the inning, but the game was now tied going into the top of the ninth inning.

You may be asking yourself why Seth Lugo wasn’t in the game yet. Well, Steve Gelbs opined on the air that he felt the Mets were considering starting Lugo tomorrow instead of Steven Matz. Shortly after the game, Luis Rojas announced that Lugo would, indeed, start tomorrow and remain in the rotation indefinitely.

Marlins’ closer Brandon Kintzler entered the game and quickly retired Ramos and Amed Rosario. However, an opposite field single from Nimmo put the go-ahead run on the bases, and then Michael Conforto hit a towering two-run home run to put the Mets back in the lead. Gary Cohen called this the biggest hit of the Mets’ season thus far, and it’s hard to argue with that.

Diaz came back out for the ninth inning, and mowed down the side, securing the Mets win and capping off a dramatic win, a series victory, and the Mets’ first three-game winning streak of the season.

Tomorrow will see Seth Lugo’s season debut as a starting pitcher against the Marlins’ Daniel Castano. Strap in, folks.

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Win Probability Added

Mets vs Marlins WPA Chart 8/19/20 Fangraphs.com

What’s WPA?

Big Mets winner: Michael Conforto, +41.5% WPA

Big Mets loser: Dellin Betances, -19.9% WPA

Mets pitchers: +8.6% WPA

Mets hitters: +41.4% WPA

Teh aw3s0mest play: Michael Conforto’s game-winning home run, +48.8% WPA

Teh sux0rest play: Edwin Diaz’s game-tying walk to Logan Forsythe, +27.9% WPA