The Mets have never started a season 9-1.
With Jacob deGrom on the mound against the rebuilding Marlins on Tuesday night, the Mets were looking to make history and stay undefeated against the NL East in 2018.
The day started with the news that Brandon Nimmo had been demoted to Triple A Las Vegas. The bullpen has been used so heavily lately that the Mets decided to call up Corey Oswalt, their impressive pitching prospect.
Who better to give the bullpen a rest than Jacob deGrom?
It seems like no matter who is on the Marlins the Mets will have a tough time with them. That was definitely the case last night, in the series opener. Sure, the Mets won, but the gutted Marlins didn’t roll over.
Tonight seemed different. Michael Conforto led off the game with a single, and lefty-killer Wilmer Flores doubled him home, giving the Mets a 1-0 lead.
In the top of the 4th, Asdrubal Cabrera continued his fantastic play with a solo homerun, increasing the lead to 2-0.
Amed Rosario hit a one out double in the fifth inning. He didn’t remain on second base very long, as Michael Conforto took the second pitch he saw into center field for a single, bringing home Rosario, and giving deGrom a 3-0 lead.
Don’t tell the Marlins they’ve dealt away almost all of their Major League talent though.
The bottom of the 5th inning was a strange one. After getting the catcher, Brian Holaday to pop up for the first out, Todd Frazier fielded a ball in foul territory that was ruled fair. The next batter, Derek Dietrich singled to right field. Miguel Rojas stepped in and hit a ground ball that deflected off of a diving Todd Frazier, allowing the first Marlins run to score.
Starlin Castro cut the lead to 3-2 with a sacrifice fly. Justin Bour was up next and he hit an opposite field home run, and all of a sudden the Mets were losing, 4-3.
Lately, it seems like anytime the opposing team scores, the Mets answer immediately. It was no different tonight.
Todd Frazier doubled to begin the inning, and then very aggressively took third base on a shallow fly ball to left center field. After a Kevin Plawecki walk, Juan Lagares hit a sacrifice fly to tie the game at 4.
Jacob deGrom came out for the sixth inning and was very impressive. He retired the side in order, striking out two Marlins.
That was the end of Jacob’s night.
DeGrom pitched 6 innings, allowing 4 earned runs on 7 hits and 1 walk. He also struck out 7 Marlins. I thought he was very good tonight. You could argue that two of the base runners that reached in the 5th weren’t his fault, and he made just the one mistake to Justin Bour.
The 4 earned runs do make for an unsightly pitching line though. It makes the Mets historic start to the season all the more impressive as deGrom and Syndergaard have not begun to dominate yet.
Jacob Rhame entered in the bottom of the 7th. Rhame, who has a save under his belt after he shut the door on Washington Sunday night, allowed Derek Dietrich to lead off the inning with a single. Miguel Rojas advanced Dietrich (the longest tenured Marlin) to second on a sacrifice bunt.
Rhame got Starlin Castro to fly out to Juan Lagares for the second out of the inning. Rhame could not escape damage though as Justin Bour hit his second 2 run homerun of the night. I think both of his blasts were hit in the same spot too.
Were you worried though? Don’t these 2018 Mets always answer right back?
Wilmer Flores led off the 8th inning and took the second ball he saw over the left field fence for a home run. 6-5.
Could the Mets pull this off? Asdrubal Cabrera was up next and he took the first 3 pitches he saw for balls. Only one other time in his career did he put a 3-0 pitch into play. Well, he decided to swing 3-0 tonight.
6-6! Unbelievable. As the off-season progressed I was definitely vocal about how it was crazy that they gave Asdrubal Cabrera 8.5 million dollars. Is there anyone else you want playing 2nd base right now?
Hansel Robles entered in the bottom of the 8th, and a shutdown inning was imperative.
Hansel Robles delivered that shutdown inning. I think there may be greater forces at work. Bryan Holaday hit a ball to left that the broadcast team prematurely called a homerun. Before my stomach had a chance to drop, Cespedes threw the ball into the infield as it turned out the ball hit off a cutout of the outfield wall and Holaday pulled into 2nd with a double. After a line out, an intentional walk and a strikeout Robles was out of the inning.
It was still a tie game at that point but you could almost taste it. Victory was inevitable.
Jay Bruce led off the 9th, and grounded out to the pitcher for the first out. Amed Rosario beat out a ball to 3rd for an infield single, and Michael Conforto drew a walk.
You could sense that Cespedes was about to do something. He’s been in an awful slump, while apparently battling the flu. Every hit he’s managed has been huge though and tonight was no different.
I’m sorry. I know it’s early. Scratch that. I know it’s very early. We have played just 10 out of 162 games. We are eventually going to lose a game. We might suffer a losing streak. We might get swept.
This team is special.
Maybe it’s Mickey Callaway. Maybe it’s Todd Frazier. Maybe the players don’t ever want to relive the horrors of 2017. Whatever it is, this team is special and I am having the time of my life watching them.
Jeurys Familia even retired the Marlins in order to record his 6th save!
The Mets have won 9 of their first 10 games for the first time in team history.
The Mets have won their first 5 road games for the first time in team history.
2017 seems like a decade ago. Tie game and the starter is coming out? No problem. The bullpen got it. A reliever gave up a few runs? No problem. The offense got it.
Everyone is contributing and it’s such an an amazing feeling. Every night there is a new hero. Hey, it’s a long season. Like I said we are going to lose games. Players are going to slump, the team will slump collectively.
Guess what though? Syndergaard and deGrom haven’t even begun to pitch yet. Cespedes is in a huge slump. Michael Conforto is back and he is contributing immediately. Amed Rosario is showing you why he was the number 1 prospect in baseball. We are 9-1 and we aren’t even firing on all cylinders right now. This team is good.
Tomorrow we attempt to sweep our third consecutive series. We attempt to stay unbeaten against the NL East at the same time. Zack Wheeler will get the spot start, as Jason Vargas is still not ready to return.
That is a story in and of itself and I’ll expand on that more tomorrow morning.
It’s a great night to be a Mets fan. What else can I say?