The Mets' offense did well to overcome an early 3-0 deficit, but early and late heroics from Tigers’ DH Eric Haase sealed a 6-5 victory for the Tigers on the front end of Wednesday’s doubleheader against the Mets in Detroit.
The Tigers struck early after starter Joey Lucchesi allowed two one-out singles in the bottom of the first. Homerless thus far for the season, Haase made him pay immediately, sending a pitch to the hedges in right field for a three-run home run. Two more hard-hit balls threatened another run in the first, but a nice catch from Brandon Nimmo in center redeemed an earlier flub as the Mets escaped with a 3-0 deficit after one.
Tommy Pham immediately redeemed a missed catch in the first inning by leading off the second with a pea-shooter home run to the left-field corner. Pham dispensed the ball almost to the spot where he missed a catch on a Jonathan Schoop double in the first. Sandwiching a Jeff McNeil lineout, Mark Canha joined Pham with his own solo home run to cut the lead to one. Both Pham and Canha had been struggling for the past few weeks, and Pham actually finished the game a triple away from a cycle.
Javy Báez brought the Detroit lead back to two in the third inning with a first-pitch bomb off Lucchesi. It marked the first home run of the season for the struggling Tigers’ star and was the fourth home run of the game in just the first three innings. And with the wind shooting out, it wouldn’t be the last.
The score stayed at 4-2 until the top of the fifth inning, where two singles from Brett Baty and Tomás Nido turned into a run after two errors from the Tigers’ defense. Two straight Mets outs threatened to strand Nido at second, but with heavy rain suddenly falling, Francisco Lindor gave the Mets a 5-4 lead with a two-run home run to left-center.
Lucchesi did not pitch his sharpest but exited the game with the lead after four shaky innings. Jimmy Yacabonis replaced Lucchesi in the bottom of the fifth and held strong, pitching three scoreless innings and striking out three along the way. It was another successful outing for the Mets in middle relief, but the usually stout back end gave up the lead this time.
In his first appearance back from paternity leave, Adam Ottavino ran into trouble in the eighth inning after allowing a one-out single to Matt Vierling and hitting Báez. A ground ball out to first advanced both Vierling and Báez to scoring position, and with two outs, Haase came through again. His RBI single to right-center plated two and gave the Tigers a 6-5 lead, marking the final score change to a back-and-forth afternoon affair.
The second game of the day/night doubleheader is scheduled to begin at 6:40 ET, weather permitting. Max Scherzer, now back from suspension, is scheduled to face Michael Lorenzen.
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Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Jimmy Yacabonis, +26% WPA
Big Mets loser: Adam Ottavino, -55% WPA
Mets pitchers: -53% WPA
Mets hitters: +3% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Francisco Lindor home run, +27.7% WPA
Teh sux0rest play: Eric Haase RBI single, +53.4% WPA