For the second time in a week, the Mets were able to get to Zack Wheeler, as they bested Wheeler and the Phillies 8-2 in Game 1 of today’s doubleheader. Wheeler and Trevor Williams matched zeroes through the first four innings, which was especially notable for Williams, as it extended his scoreless inning streak to 24 consecutive scoreless frames—a career high.
Williams was assisted by a heads-up play by Francisco Lindor that resulted in a strike ‘em out, throw ‘em out double play to end the fourth inning. With runners at first and third and one out, Garrett Stubbs struck out for the second out and catcher Michael Pérez whipped a throw to Lindor that beat Jean Segura trying to steal second base, but rather than being enticed into a rundown, Lindor threw back home to Pérez and nabbed Stott at the plate trying to score. The Phillies challenged the play, arguing that Pérez blocked the plate, but no violation of the rule was found and the scoreless tie was preserved, along with Williams’ scoreless inning streak.
Meanwhile, the Mets managed just one hit off Wheeler through the first four innings—an infield single by Starling Marte to lead off the fourth. But, it was the walks that came back to bite Wheeler and ratchet up his pitch count. Jeff McNeil hit a single to lead off the fifth inning and Wheeler issued a walk to the struggling Tyler Naquin to advance McNeil into scoring position. Brett Baty then grounded into a productive out that advanced the runners to second and third. Then Michael Pérez came up huge with his first hit as a Met—an RBI single that gave the Mets a 2-0 lead.
Matt Vierling walked to lead off the bottom of the inning and that was the end of Williams’ day after 71 pitches. Seth Lugo then came in the game and struck out the next three batters in order to preserve Williams’ shutout performance. The Mets then added two more runs off Wheeler in the top of the sixth, as Marte led off the inning with a walk and was driven in by a a triple off the bat of Francisco Lindor. Wheeler got Pete Alonso to pop out for the first out, but then walked Daniel Vogelbach and gave up a single to Jeff McNeil that plated the Mets’ fourth run and ended his day. Connor Brogdon came in the game for the Phillies and stopped the bleeding there, assisted in part by a nice diving grab by Nick Castellanos on a shallow fly by Naquin. But, the Phillies were now facing a four-run deficit.
The Phillies clawed back a run in the bottom of the sixth. Buck Showalter turned to Joely Rodríguez to face the lefty Bryson Stott when Lugo surrendered a one-out single to Nick Castellanos in his second inning of work. Stott hit a bouncing ball down the first base line that was just out of the reach of Pete Alonso’s vertical jump and Castellanos advanced to third on the double. Then, Jean Segura hit a sacrifice fly to get the Phillies on the board and narrow the Mets’ lead to 4-1. But a nice running catch by McNeil on a little flare from Stubbs behind second helped keep the Phillies to just the one run.
The Mets threatened off Brogdon in the seventh, but Brogdon was able to get through Lindor and Alonso with runners on to keep the Phillies within striking distance. Rodríguez had a much easier inning in the seventh and set the Phillies down 1-2-3. Adam Ottavino contributed a scoreless eighth inning, complete with two strikeouts and supported by a fantastic defensive play by Jeff McNeil—his third sparkling play in the field on the afternoon.
The Mets added some insurance off Nick Nelson in the top of the ninth that allowed them to sit down Edwin Díaz and use Sam Clay instead for the bottom of the ninth. After Nelson hit Brett Baty with a pitch and walked Michael Pérez to lead off the inning, RBI hits from Brandon Nimmo and Starling Marte plated a pair of runs and then Darin Ruf’s sacrifice fly extended the Mets’ lead to 7-1. The Phillies then pulled Nelson from the game and replaced him with position player Darrick Hall, who surrendered an additional run on a McNeil RBI single to make the score a lopsided 8-1.
In his Mets debut, Sam Clay surrendered an unearned run thanks to consecutive fielding errors by Brett Baty and Yolmer Sánchez—the latter also making his Mets debut. Díaz stood back up in the bullpen for a brief moment, but before he could throw a warmup pitch, Clay struck out Kyle Schwarber looking to end the rally and secure the victory for the Mets.
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Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Trevor Williams, +16.2% WPA
Big Mets loser: Pete Alonso, -9.9% WPA
Mets pitchers: +38.2% WPA
Mets hitters: +11.8% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Michael Pérez’s RBI single in the fifth inning, +13.9% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Jean Segura’s single in the fourth inning which advanced Bryson Stott to third, -7.8% WPA