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This is the McNeil (we hope)

We will accept no more decoys.

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at New York Mets Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff McNeil gave us a parting gift for the season, providing the deciding blow in a 3-2 win over the Phillies. The Mets were down early but rallied in the middle and late innings, as usual. In an unusual fashion, that rally was enough to get them a win, though any wins at this point of the season are largely ornamental.

Like the night before, the Phillies got on the board early, with a two out walk and double putting the Mets in an early hole. The Mets squandered several opportunities to score over the next couple innings, stranding two in the first, wasting a leadoff single in the third, and erasing a runner on a double play in the fourth. To make matters worse, Jean Segura got the Mets again in the fifth, lining a ground rule double that set up a sacrifice fly by Bryce Harper to give the Phillies a 2-0 lead in the fifth.

Unlike yesterday, the Mets did actually rally back. A Jeff McNeil single and a Tomas Nido double put two runners in scoring position with nobody out in the bottom of the fifth, and Dom Smith immediately cashed in with a pinch hit, two-RBI double. That was all they’d get, as Dom was stranded on third, but the game was tied.

Two innings later, they did one better. Leading off the top of the seventh, Jeff McNeil launched a long solo home run into the bullpen in right-center, giving the Mets a 3-2 lead. It was McNeil’s first home run since August 1st, as he’s just totally failed to ever get on track this season. He’ll probably be a major part of the team next year out of necessity. Whether that’s a good idea or not is as yet unclear.

Anyway, the Mets bullpen managed to make that lead stand up. Seth Lugo worked his way into trouble in the seventh (another player whose imapct on the 2022 Mets remains up in the air), but was bailed out by Aaron Loup, who struck oiut J.T. Realmuto to strand the bases loaded. Loup stayed in and worked around a two-out single in the eighth before handing the ball to Edwin Diaz, who hit a batter but was otherwise unscathed as he recorded his 30th save of the season.

The win improves the Mets’ record to 73-77, still well out of any sort of serious contention for the playoffs. They also are roughly three games “behind” the Rockies in the tankathon standings for a top-10 pick. Remember that because of the Kumar Rocker situation, the Mets will have to forfeit their first round pick to sign a free agent with a qualifying offer unless their pick lies outside the top-10. Catching the Rockies is unlikely, as they have seven games remaining against the Giants and Dodgers. Hopefully that situation doesn’t have an outsized impact on the Mets’ offseason plans either.

Tomorrow is an off day before the Mets start a two game set with the Red Sox. Marcus Stroman will take the mound against Eduardo Rodriguez in Fenway.

Box scores

-illar of the day

Neither did anything of note.

Win Probability Added

What’s WPA?

Big Mets winner: Jeff McNeil, +25.3% WPA
Big Mets loser: J.D. Davis, -10.9% WPA
Mets pitchers: +40.9% WPA
Mets hitters: +9.1% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Jeff McNeil homers in the seventh, +21.6% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: J.T. Realmuto drives in Bryce Harper with a double, -11.7% WPA

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