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Mets Morning News: Seth Lugo is thriving in the Mets’ rotation

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Your Sunday morning dose of New York Mets and MLB news, notes, and links.

Philadelphia Phillies v New York Mets Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Meet the Mets

Seth Lugo gave up a solo home run to Rhys Hoskins in the first inning. But that was the only run the righty would give up in the Mets’ 5-1 victory over the Phillies—his longest outing so far in 2020. He was stretched to 81 pitches over 5 innings, over which he gave up just four hits and two walks, striking out eight batters. Meanwhile, the offense—led by Andres Gimenez, Michael Conforto, and Jeff McNeil—scored a run in each inning from the third through the sixth, allowing Lugo to earn the win. In doing so he became the first Mets starter to notch a victory since August 13.

Choose your recap: Amazin’ Avenue short and long, MLB.com, NY Post, Newsday, Daily News, North Jersey, ESPN

“It’s a great position that he’s there and he’s fully stretched out,” Luis Rojas said about Seth Lugo settling into the Mets’ rotation. “We were talking about his repertoire. We were praising it that he can … have a quality start like this one even though he didn’t have the command you desire him to have the whole time. He pitched today.” Lugo appeared not to have his best stuff in yesterday’s game, but he still managed to have a good outing and not tire the third time through the batting order—something that had plagued him in the past. Lugo is now the Mets’ second-best starting pitcher and it’s hard not to wonder where the Mets would be if they had left him in the bullpen like they initially wanted to do.

Luis Rojas called it going with the “hot hand” when asked about why Andres Gimenez was starting at shortstop yesterday. The move worked out; Gimenez collected two hits and two RBIs in the game. But, while Rojas didn’t say it outright, it certainly appears as if the struggling Amed Rosario is no longer an everyday starter. It seems the same is true for Wilson Ramos, who has shared time with Robinson Chirinos behind the plate since Chirinos’ arrival.

The 2020 season has been a “renaissance” for reliever Chasen Shreve, who has become one of the Mets’ most reliable arms out of the bullpen.

Tomas Nido, who has been on the COVID-19 injured list since August 25, was cleared to resume baseball activities. He will report to the team’s alternate site in Brooklyn. “It’s great to see him back,” Michael Conforto said about Nido. “It was good to see him [Friday]. It’s good that he’s healthy. He’s feeling a lot better. I was in the cage when he came in there and he looks like he never left. He said he feels good.”

Hunter Strickland cleared waivers and accepted his assignment to Brooklyn. Pedro Payano was released.

Seth Lugo had a precautionary X-ray after yesterday’s game, due to the deflection of a ball off his pitching hand. It came back negative.

The Mets announced that David Peterson will start tomorrow’s game.

Former Yankees broadcaster Spencer Ross looks back on being in the booth for Tom Seaver’s 300th win.

Mike Vaccaro of the New York Post recalls when Tom Seaver told him the story of when the Mets reached .500 in May of 1969 and the press wanted to write about it as a glowing achievement. But the players—led by Seaver—would not let them do it.

After the Mets designated Billy Hamilton for assignment, Todd Frazier was able to get his old number 33 back.

Former members of the Mets organization look back on the relief effort after 9/11 and the role Shea Stadium played.

Around the National League East

The Nationals signed general manager Mike Rizzo to a contract extension.

The Nationals handed the Braves a 10-4 drubbing, as Brock Holt broke out of his slump. It was the first time the Braves had lost a game Max Fried had started this season.

The Marlins beat the Rays 7-3 behind a strong performance from Sandy Alcantara. “They got me a couple of days ago, and now I got them,” Alcantara said.

The Marlins transferred Elieser Hernandez from the 10-day IL to the 45-day IL with a lat injury, meaning he is done for the season.

Around Major League Baseball

Last night Mike Trout hit his 300th career home run, setting an Angels franchise record. He also became fastest player in baseball history to reach 300 home runs and 200 stolen bases.

Joel Sherman of the New York Post argues in favor of a 174-game season with 146 eight-inning games and 14 seven-inning doubleheaders.

This Date in Mets History

On this date in 1971, the late Tom Seaver pitched a complete game, two-hit shutout against the Expos in Montreal. Of course, everyone remembers his almost perfect game, but his routine brilliance should be remembered too.