The Mets needed some relief after four straight losses, and they got it from two unexpected sources.
Putting together his finest start of the season, David Peterson kept the Mets afloat for much of the game, while Rafael Ortega’s second-ever walk-off hit gave the Mets a 3-2 victory over the Angels Sunday afternoon in Queens. Though saddled with the no decision, Peterson put together a start that rivaled Kodai Senga’s from the beginning of the series, giving the Mets a slight edge through much of the afternoon’s pitching duel.
The Mets scored their first run in the bottom of the fourth on three singles from Jeff McNeil, Daniel Vogelbach, and Francisco Alvarez, with McNeil scoring from second with two outs on Alvarez’s soft hit through the middle of the infield. An errant throw home made sure the play wasn’t close, and the Mets found a 1-0 lead on their first three hits of the game.
Peterson, meanwhile, kept the Angels scoreless through six efficient innings to the relief of New York’s taxed bullpen. And to counter his usual nervy starts, Peterson never faced much adversity, taking his one-hit performance against a challenged Angels lineup into the seventh inning. Unfortunately for the Mets, Angels’ starter Griffin Canning pitched just as well, allowing just five singles through his first six innings with his only blemish the fourth-inning run.
Peterson first ran into trouble with one out in the seventh inning, allowing a single, walk, and bunt single to load the bases. Chad Wallach’s groundout to first base scored Mickey Moniak from third to tie the game at 1-1, and Peterson finished out the inning by getting Andrew Velazquez to line out to Pete Alonso. It was a disappointing finish to Peterson’s best start of the year, as his 104 pitches through seven innings turned in eight strikeouts with just three hits and one run allowed.
Drew Smith came into the game in the top of the eighth and immediately gave up a go-ahead solo home run to Luis Rengifo. Because baseball is weird, he followed that at-bat by striking out Shohei Ohtani and Brandon Drury back-to-back before ending the inning on Eduardo Escobar’s flyout. After Ohtani’s historic game the night before, he finished off his series going 0-4 with two strikeouts to the disappointment of the visiting crowd.
With one out in the bottom of the eighth, Francisco Lindor extended his hit streak to fourteen games with a looping single past the infield. He advanced to second base on a wild pitch with two outs, and Alonso sent him home on an RBI hustle double to left-center field to tie the game at 2-2.
After Adam Ottavino retired the side in the top of the ninth, Alvarez led off the bottom of the ninth by reaching first via a hit-by-pitch. DJ Stewart followed with a single to right field, putting the pinch-runner Tim Locastro on second base with no one out, and Mark Vientos loaded the bases on a four-pitch walk. With a 2-2 count, Rafael Ortega hit a breaking ball to right field that fell outside of Hunter Renfroe’s glove, scoring Locastro and giving Ortega his second-career walk-off hit.
The Mets host the Texas Rangers tomorrow, with Tylor Megill scheduled to face off against Jon Gray with a 7:10 first pitch.
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Win Probability Added
Big Mets winner: Pete Alonso, +29% WPA
Big Mets loser: Drew Smith, -21% WPA
Mets pitchers: +14% WPA
Mets hitters: +36% WPA
Teh aw3s0mest play: Alonso’s RBI double (+33% WPA)
Teh sux0rest play: Rengifo’s homer (-26% WPA)