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Cookie Cooked

Things got ugly in Milwaukee.

MLB: New York Mets at Milwaukee Brewers Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets wasted a chance at first-inning runs, as Freddy Peralta walked both Brandon Nimmo and Francisco Lindor in the opening frame. A series of pop outs left the Mets scoreless as Carlos Carrasco took the mound to start his season.

In what is, perhaps, the most 2023 way to start a season, Carrasco started the year with a pitch clock violation. However, aside from issuing a walk to Jesse Winker, Carrasco got through the inning unscathed.

In the top of the second, Daniel Vogelbach pulled a ball over the first base bag and into the corner. Vogey tried to stretch it into a single, but he was beat to second by a perfect throw from rookie right-fielder Joey Wiemer.

The Brewers got on the board in the third inning. Brice Turang walked to lead off the inning, stole second, and scored on a check swing lofter to left-field off the bat of Winker. Another pitch-clock violation and a pair of strikeouts got Carrasco through the inning.

Peralta settled in after the second inning, and looked more like the 2021 All-Star than his injured 2022 self.

A tiring Carrasco had thrown 78 pitches by the time he threw one across the middle of the plate which Brian Anderson deposited beyond the center-field wall for a two-run shot, putting the Brewers up 3-0. While his slider and changeup looked good early, Carrasco was laboring for much of the start, never quite looking comfortable.

Buck Showalter continued his bad habit of leaving his starters in for too long, and Carrasco went out for the fifth and looked washed. Back to back walks to Christian Yelich and Winker led to Carrasco’s exit, and saw Tommy Hunter enter the game with two on and no one out. A first-pitch swing by Willy Adames nicked off the glove of Lindor and rolled into the outfield, scoring Yelich putting the Mets down 4-0.

A walk and a fielder’s choice added a fifth run, the final charged to Carrasco. Another walk and another bloop hit from Anderson make it 6-0. The next batter, Turang, crushed a pitch to right-center fo a grand slam, and setting the deficit at double digits.

More things happened: the Mets kept walking players, Dennis Santana made his third appearance in five games out of the bullpen, Yelich racked up a Golden Sombrero. But really, as soon as the ball left Turang’s batter, nothing else would matter.

Well, one more thing happened: in the bottom of the eighth, the Mets had what must be the weirdest defensive alignment of the season: with Luis Guillorme in to pitch, Mark Canha replaced Guillorme at third. Lindor exited the game, letting Jeff McNeil slide over to short stop, and kept pinch-hitter Eduardo Escobar in the game at second. Tim Locastro played left field, too.

Two fun facts about the last six outs: Guillorme was the only pitcher in the game to not walk a batter (there were 14 across the two teams), and Locastro was also hit by his third pitch of the season in his fourth at-bat of the year. You can’t make this stuff up.

Tomorrow, Max Scherzer starts for the Mets, and we have to believe that things will be better than they were today.

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Win Probability Added

Mets vs Brewers WPA Chart for 4/3/23

What’s WPA?

Big winner: You’re joking, right?

Big loser: Carlos Carrasco, -16.3% WPA

Total pitcher WPA: -23.8% WPA

Total batter WPA: -26.2% WPA

Teh aw3s0mest play: Luis Guillorme’s third inning single, +.4% WPA

Teh sux0rest play: Brian Anderson’s two-run homer, -18.4% WPA