In a game that was headed towards “inexcusable loss” territory, the Mets scratched out a 2-1 win in extras over the Cubs. Offense was in short supply, but multiple times the Mets came up with stellar defensive plays, the biggest of all from a very unlikely source. It was the sort of win that makes you forget the annoying game that precipitated it.
For the most part, this was a boring, slow game. Marcus Stroman is a notoriously slow worker, while Walker isn’t super quick himself. To make matters worse, Ramon De Jesus seemed to be guessing more often than not when calling balls and strikes. Both teams scored a run in the fourth - RBI double from Pete Alonso, RBI single from Frank Schwindel - but were quiet otherwise. Combine no offense, slow pitching, and horrible umpiring and you end up with a contest that does little other than exasperate.
That pattern persisted into the later innings, even after Stroman and Walker had departed. Leadoff singles in the seventh and eighth were both wasted, as was the free runner in the tenth. These things can change in an instant however, and that’s what happened in the bottom of the tenth. An incredible defensive play from J.D. Davis, perhaps the most unlikely source on the roster for such a happening, saved the game, and the Mets managed to score on a sacrifice fly in the top of the eleventh. Edwin Diaz made quick work of the Cubs and all frustrations were forgotten as the Mets got out of game one with a win.
Adam Ottavino deserves special mention for his two scoreless innings of work, working around traffic in both the ninth and tenth. Same goes for the defense, which was fantastic all game, and for Taijuan Walker, who logged his seventh consecutive quality start. The win improves the Mets to 57-34, putting them 23 games over for the first time since 2006. They’ll play another game with the Cubs this afternoon, with Max Scherzer on the mound and Starling Marte due back in the starting lineup.
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Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Adam Ottavino, +45.2% WPA
Big Mets loser: Luis Guillorme, -25.9% WPA
Mets pitchers: +132.4% WPA
Mets hitters: -82.4% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Francisco Lindor singles in the top of the eleventh, +17.6% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Frank Schwindel singles in a run in the fourth, -12.3% WPA