The Mets came into today in a tie for first place in the East with the Braves, the first time since April where they haven’t been alone in first place. They had also dropped three straight to two of the worst teams in the league, so they had a lot to prove coming into today’s doubleheader. Luckily, they had Chris Bassitt taking the mound for the first game, who has been one of their most consistent starters of late.
The Mets hit the ground running in the first. A Brandon Nimmo single and Pete Alonso double got them going early, and a Jeff McNeil sacrifice fly got Nimmo in for the Mets first run. They were unable to bring Alonso around to score, but it was a promising start for the Mets who had had issues scoring in the previous three games. In the bottom of the inning Bassitt made quick work of the Pirates lineup, sending the Pirates top of the order down in order, with two strikeouts to start.
The Mets started the second quietly, hitting into two quick outs. But then an Eduardo Escobar single and Tomas Nido double had the Mets threatening to score again. But Nimmo flew out to end the inning and leave the Mets still leading by only one run. The Pirates again had a quiet inning in the bottom of the second, with an one-out single giving them their first hit but it being erased with a double play.
The Mets went down in order in the top of the third, the first inning of the day where the Mets couldn’t scratch out a hit, but they still held the (skinny) lead. Bassitt had another easy inning, setting down the Pirates in order once again, and getting another strikeout along the way.
The Mets offense really came alive in the fourth, starting with a Daniel Vogelbach leadoff single. Then Mark Canha was hit by a pitch, putting two runners on with no outs for Tyler Naquin. Naquin delivered, clubbing a three-run home run to the bullpens in center field, giving the Mets a four-run lead. That wasn’t all though, as Escobar demolished a ball into the stands in right-center, to put the Mets up a towering five runs. The Mets didn’t score anymore that inning, but the lead they garnered was very promising. And with Bassitt dealing as he was, the bottom of the inning continued their dominance. With the exception of a lead-off infield single by Oneil Cruz, Bassitt kept the Pirates at bay.
The Mets hit into three straight groundouts in the fifth, but it didn’t feel as bad given their big lead in the game. Bassitt had a great bottom of the sixth, with three strikeouts to send the Pirates down in order once again.
The bottom of the Mets lineup went down in order in the top of the sixth, with two strikeouts to boot from Naquin and Nido. In the bottom of the inning, some cracks started to show in Bassitt’s performance. He gave up a leadoff double to Greg Allen, then gave up another single to Tyler Heineman which drove Allen in for the Pirates first run. Bassitt was eventually able to extricate himself from trouble, with a lot of effort and a lot of pitches, leaving the Pirates having only scored one run.
Other than a leadoff single from Brandon Nimmo, the seventh inning was quiet for the Mets, who didn’t score another run or even get runners in scoring position. Bassitt was still in the game in the bottom of the seventh, and with the exception of a MIchael Chavis one-out double, the Pirates went down without a fight, with two strikeouts bringing Bassitt to ten total on the day.
In the eighth, the Mets didn’t do much of anything at the plate. With the exception of a two-out Naquin single, the Mets were unable to hit off Miguel Yajure, brought in to replace Bryse Wilson. In the bottom of the inning, Seth Lugo came in to pitch, ending Bassitt’s outing. And he got through it without much stress, giving up just a single to Oneil Cruz and retiring everyone else, putting the Mets just three outs from a much needed victory.
In the ninth, the Mets went down in order in not very inspiring fashion, with every batter striking out against Yajure. But still, they needed just three outs from Seth Lugo to put them back in the win column. And Seth Lugo was able to get it done, with a Michael Chavis two-out single being the only blemish on his otherwise good ninth inning.
The Mets snapped their three game losing streak, keeping the Mets from having their first four game losing streak of the year. They also got back to being a half-game over the Braves in first place, at least for a few hours. There’s still a whole other game to play today, but for now, the Mets are feeling good and back to their winning ways.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Chris Bassitt, +25.0% WPA
Big Mets loser: Francisco Lindor, -8.0% WPA
Mets pitchers: +29.6% WPA
Mets hitters: +20.4% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Tyler Naquin’s three run home run in the fourth, +16.6% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Brandon Nimmo’s two-out fly out in the second, -5.4% WPA