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Not with a bang, but a whimper

The Mets had a hugely successful first half of 2022, but ended it with a frustrating offensive performance in a losing effort to the Cubs.

MLB: New York Mets at Chicago Cubs Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets, unlike in their sweep of Saturday’s doubleheader, could not overcome a makeshift bullpen and a low-scoring offense, as they fell to the Cubs 3-2 on the last day of a very successful first half of the 2022 campaign. Despite the loss, they will head into the All Star Break with a 58-35 record, in first place in the NL East.

The Mets had a frustrating day at the plate, netting eight hits and making some loud contact, but the rough winds in Wrigley made it tough sledding for any and all fly balls, regardless of what jerseys the hitters wore. They scored their first run of the day in the first inning, on a Starling Marte steal of home — kind of. Back to back singles by Marte and Francisco Lindor put runners on first and third in the inning. Lindor got caught in a rundown after being picked off of first, but heads up base running by Marte saw him break for home, and Nico Hoerner got caught up deciding whether to throw home or focus on Lindor. Lindor dodged the tag, made it to second safely, and put the Mets up 1-0. Pete Alonso drove in the second run of the game on a misplayed pop up to first baseman Frank Schwindel in the fifth inning.

Mets starter David Peterson had a very David Peterson start, throwing 97 pitches (59 strikes) over five innings. He surrendered an unearned run in large part due to an Eduardo Escobar error in the fourth, but kept the damage to one and gave the Mets a chance at a win.

Tommy Hunter relieved him for two scoreless innings and surrendered just one hit. Drew Smith got the eighth and, well, highlighted Billy Eppler’s need to add to the bullpen at the upcoming trade deadline by struggling to miss bats time and time again.

Christopher Morel and Willson Contreras singled to put runners on first and third with no outs, which was not what anyone wanted. Ian Happ check swung a slider into fair territory to tie the game at two apiece, and a Nico Hoerner single chased Contreras home (though, a very poor throw by Brandon Nimmo did not help matters), to push the Cubs ahead for the first time, 3-2.

David Robertson, perhaps a future Met, got the save opportunity and looked good in a quasi-audition, getting Mark Canha to weakly fly out before surrendering a single to Luis Guillorme. He eventually got a pinch hitting J.D. Davis to roll into a double play to end the first half on a bit of a sour note.

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Amazin’ Avenue
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Box scores

Win Probability Added

What’s WPA?

Big Mets winner: Tommy Hunter, +19.7% WPA
Big Mets loser: Drew Smith, -55.1% WPA
Mets pitchers: -16.2% WPA
Mets hitters: -33.8% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Pete Alonso’s RBI single in the top of the fifth, +13.9% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Nico Hoerner’s RBI single in the bottom of the eighth, -27.8% WPA