On May 2, the Mets began a stretch of 13 games against the Tigers, the Rockies, the Reds, and the Nationals. With today’s 10-3 loss to Washington at Nationals Park, New York concluded that “easy” stretch of their schedule with a 4-9 record. It’s not what you want.
The Mets were plagued by a lot of the things in today’s loss that has come to define their recent ineptitude: bad starting pitching, an inability to get big hits, and falling behind early. New York, who have been outscored 36-9 in the first inning at the start of play, fell behind early once again, as Washington pushed across a first inning run against David Peterson. Truthfully, Peterson was lucky to escape the first inning at 1-0, as the first three Nationals batters scorched the ball against him. Lane Thomas doubled on the first pitch of the game, Luis Garcia lined out to center field, and Joey Menesis roped a double to drive Thomas home, and just like that Washington was out in front. Peterson escaped without further damage.
The Mets answered right back in the top of the second, which was the last time that it felt like the Mets could win this one. The game-tying run came courtesy of three consecutive two-out hits from Starling Marte, Jeff McNeil (which drove in Marte after he stole second and advanced to third on an error) and Eduardo Escobar. It was an especially encouraging hit for McNeil, who came into today’s game mired in a 4-for-27 slump. The Mets could have done more, though, which is the frustrating part. Francisco Álvarez ended up walking to load the bases, but he was picked up by Keibert Ruiz to extinguish the threat.
Peterson settled down in the second, but it turned out to be his one (1) clean inning. From there, Washington would score in the next six innings to build an eight-run lead. Peterson lasted five innings and ended up allowing six earned runs on nine hits. The outing, another in a long line of clunkers for the once-promising left-hander, ballooned his ERA to 8.08, which is the highest among starting pitchers who have thrown at least 30 innings in 2023. With Carlos Carrasco set to return, Peterson could be ticketed for Syracuse shortly.
The Mets added a run in the sixth on a Tommy Pham sacrifice fly in the sixth, which drove in Francisco Lindor after he led off with a double and Pete Alonso sent him to third on his single. The Mets would threaten after Marte’s single put runners on first and third, but McNeil’s line out put an end to any hope of a comeback.
Tommy Hunter pitched the final three innings, allowing four earned runs on six hits. It wasn’t a good outing, per se, but it did save the bullpen at least. The Mets went down in the seventh and eighth and, save for a worthless run in the ninth, they could not muster any sort of magic. It marked the seventh straight series that the Mets have failed to win (0-5-2) since they took two of three from the Dodgers in Los Angeles on April 17-19.
The Mets will try to end that stretch as they return to Citi Field for a six-game homestand. First up: The Rays, who have the best record in baseball. God speed, Metsies. At least Justin Verlander will be making his Citi Field debut as a Met.
SB Nation GameThreads
Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Nobody
Big Mets loser: David Peterson, -31.4% WPA
Mets pitchers: -34.9% WPA
Mets hitters: -15.1% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Jeff McNeil second inning run-scoring single, 9.1% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Joey Menesis third inning run-scoring double, -15.2% WPA