If before the game started, you were told that Jacob deGrom got pulled after two innings and that Michael Wacha was coming in with the game already at a 3-0 deficit, well you wouldn’t have given the Mets’ a snowball’s chance of winning. The Phillies actually had an 85.4 Win Expectancy during the second inning. But the Mets’ relievers were outstanding and J.D. Davis cracked three extra-base hits to lead the Mets to a highly-improbable comeback, as they emerged with a 5-4 win to even the series.
We’re so used to seeing deGrom blow away hitters that it was quite a shock to see him make it an entire time through the order without striking a batter out. He got through the first inning okay but ran into trouble in the second inning. After three runs were in, he finally got his first strikeout, when he fanned Bryce Harper, the 11th batter of the game for the Phillies. And the Mets caught a break on the same play, as Wilson Ramos threw to first base and picked off Andrew McCutchen.
The Mets scurried to get someone up in the bullpen during the second inning but when deGrom got out of the inning, everyone expected him back for the third. But instead we got recently-demoted Michael Wacha and it seemed the Mets were surrendering – for the game, the series and the season. And then Wacha gave up a homer to the third batter he faced. And then a miracle happened. Wacha ended up allowing just that one run during four innings of relief.
The Mets chipped away at the deficit. J.D. Davis led off the fourth inning with the first of his XBH parade, this one a double to right center. He scored later in the inning on a ground out. Then in the sixth, Brandon Nimmo doubled and came home to score on an opposite field homer by Davis and the Mets were down just a run.
Davis capped off his big night with an RBI double to tie the game in the eighth inning. It almost didn’t happen, as the runner on first didn’t take off when the ball was hit, as he should have with two outs. But Michael Conforto beat the relay throw to the plate and the crisis was averted.
Meanwhile, Justin Wilson threw a perfect seventh inning and Miguel Castro put two runners on in the eighth but wiggled his way out of the jam. After the Mets took the lead in the top of the ninth, Edwin Diaz came on and struck out the side to earn his fourth Save of the year.
Andres Gimenez, who has struggled all year coming up with the big hit, followed up an intentional walk to Jeff McNeil with a solid single to center field to give the Mets their first lead of the game.
Remarkably, as bad as the Mets are playing, they still have a shot at the playoffs. Philadelphia losing seven of its last 10 games certainly helps. There are still too many teams ahead of the Mets to feel good about their chances, even if the actual deficit isn’t too bad. But that they have a puncher’s chance at all is hard to believe.
It was announced during the broadcast that deGrom left with hamstring spasms. This game may be what keeps him from winning another Cy Young Award but the Mets managed to put up another win in one of deGrom’s starts. They’re now 8-2 when their ace starts a game.