I think I know what hell is.
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The Mets who are flying high, having recorded 4 straight victories, wanted to make it 5, which would result in a sweep of the Washington Nationals. It felt like a playoff game in what is only the second night game of the year for the Mets. Maybe because it’s so cold. Let’s get into the action.
Things got off to a bad start for the Mets. Quickly.
After retiring Adam Eaton to start the game, Asdrubal Cabrera made an error allowing Anthony Rendon to reach base. Bryce Harper came up and promptly launched a ball into the right field stands, making it 2-0.
The Mets would answer in the third inning.
With two outs, Jay Bruce walked. Todd Frazier walked. Asdrubal Cabrera walked. Then Adrian Gonzalez stepped up to the plate. He liked the first pitch he saw and drove it into the right field bullpen.
Adrian Gonzalez became the first player ever to hit a walk off grand slam against the Mets, and hit a grand slam for the Mets. Kinda interesting. That gave the Mets a 4-2 lead.
Matt Harvey wasn’t great tonight. He did battle to his credit. The Nationals had him on the ropes a few times, and he was able to escape, preserving the Mets lead, albeit narrowly.
Harvey allowed a run in the bottom of the fourth, as catcher Pedro Severino doubled home Trea Turner. Harvey was able to get out of the inning with a 4-3 lead.
In what has become a recurring theme this season, Asdrubal Cabrera got the run right back.
Listen to this stat. At the time of Cabrera’s home run, opposing teams have scored 17 times against the Mets. They have answered immediately 9 times. Insane.
Speaking of answering immediately.
In what was Matt Harvey’s final inning of work, Trea Turner singled home Bryce Harper, cutting the lead to 5-4.
Matt Harvey did not have a great night. He gave up 9 hits and 1 walk over 5 innings. His two strikeouts and four earned runs made for an ugly pitching line.
Robert Gsellman entered the game in the sixth inning. He walked the leadoff batter, Pedro Severino. Ok this guy is really becoming a nuisance. It looked like he got Brian Goodwin to ground into a double play but Amed Rosario could only get the lead runner. Goodwin immediately stole second and d’Arnaud threw the ball into center field. Gsellman got two straight ground outs to escape the inning unscathed.
The defense was awful tonight, and the Nationals are running all over Travis d’Arnaud. The defense I’m not worried about. The stolen bases against us is definitely an issue.
Gsellman came back out for the 7th inning. He walked Bryce Harper who reached base every time he stepped to the plate tonight. He struck out Matt Adams, before allowing a single to Howie Kendrick.
Gsellman got Trea Turner to hit a ball to Todd Frazier. Frazier froze for a second and tagged the lead runner, Bryce Harper. A double play would have been tough with Turner running. Gsellman then struck out Michael Taylor looking.
The problem is the pitch was called a ball. Taylor hit the next pitch into left field for a single and the game was tied. Gsellman retired Pedro Severino and the game remained tied.
Talk to me about robot umpires. After this week and a half, I’m ready to listen.
AJ Ramos entered in the 8th inning and retired Ryan Zimmerman and Adam Eaton before allowing Anthony Rendon to reach on a walk. Jerry Blevins came in to face Bryce Harper and immediately picked off Anthony Rendon. Good strategy. I wouldn’t want to pitch to Harper right now either.
Amed Rosario had a really tough night. It’s his first full season so you’re not gonna harp too much on it. Just growing pains. But he chased a lot of really bad pitches tonight.
The pitchers spot was due up first for the Mets so they had to remove Jerry Blevins for a pinch hitter. Blevins is their only left handed reliever.
As Jerry Blevins got the last out of the inning on a pick off, the Mets still had to pitch to Bryce Harper in the bottom of the ninth. Or maybe not. Seth Lugo pitched around Harper and gave him first base.
Seth Lugo found himself in a bases loaded one out situation, and extra innings looked very unlikely. ESPN started posting win probability stats on the screen. Lugo struck out Michael Taylor and Pedro Severino to end the inning. Phenomenal!
A developing story on the Nationals side of things was their relief pitching. Tanner Roark departed the game after 5 innings. The Washington bullpen allowed only one base runner over the next 5 innings.
Seth Lugo came out in the bottom of the tenth and ensured there would be an 11th. His emergence as a relief pitcher is a top 3 story so far this year for the Mets. Simply remarkable.
In the top of the 11th Cabrera led off with a single and advanced to second base on a passed ball. Adrian Gonzalez struck out and the ball rolled four feet away from the catcher. Gonzalez decided not to run. Cabrera decided to run to third and was out by ten feet.
The Mets were doing everything in their power to give this game away. Seth Lugo wasn’t having it though. He delivered another dominant inning, and on we went to the 12th inning.
Juan Lagares led off the inning with a single, and he advanced to second base on an awkward Amed Rosario bunt. Yoenis Cespedes singled to left center and Lagares scored the go ahead run. Could we really steal this win on the road and get the sweep?!
Jacob Rhame came out to pitch the bottom of the 12th. The pinch hitter for the Nationals was none other than ex-Met Matt Reynolds. After falling behind 3-0, Rhame got a ground ball to Frazier. 1 out. Pedro Severino stepped in next and struck out looking. Wilmer Difo came up to bat as the last hope for the Nationals.
He doubled to left over the outstretched glove of Yoenis Cespedes and here comes trouble.
Adam Eaton. Anthony Rendon. Bryce Harper.
It wouldn’t get past Adam Eaton. Rhame got the Nats’ lead off man to ground out to Frazier and the Mets won the game!
The Mets have won 5 in a row. The Mets have won 7 of their first 8. The Mets have swept the Washington Nationals!
You cannot tell me the Mets win this game in 2017. I won’t hear it. This team is just finding ways to win and I love it.
Marlins tomorrow night. Noah Syndergaard on the mound. Let’s get it!