Gut Reaction: Mets 5 Marlins 2 (4/9/17)

Noah Syndergaard provided the lightning, Michael Conforto and Jay Bruce supplied the thunder as Sunday became Thor’s day in front of a national audience and the Mets avenged the last two losses to Miami.

On the big stage of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball, Syndergaard solidified his stature as one of the premier pitchers in baseball. The formidable Miami lineup, looked silly at the hands of the Thunder God. JT Realmuto, Christian Yelich, Giancarlo Stanton, Justin Bour and Marcell Ozuna went a combined 1-for-12, with six strikeouts against Syndergaard. It was a beautiful thing to watch. Even adversity couldn’t deter him.

The Mets opened the lid on this one right away against former nemesis Endison Volquez. After Jose Reyes flied out leading off the game, Asdrubal Cabrera beat the shift with a bunt single toward third. Manager Terry Collins then put the hit-and-run on with Yoenis Cespedes batting and Cespedes zipped it through the vacated shortstop hole. Jay Bruce hit a sharp grounder to Bour at first base. Bour came home with it and Cabrera was dead, but Realmuto whiffed on the throw and the Mets had a 1-0 lead. Neil Walker looped a single to left as Cespedes scored. Lucas Duda punched a base hit through the shift to load the bases. Michael Conforto drew a four-pitch walk to plate the Mets’ third run. They could’ve added another, but Realmuto made a great play on a dribbler by Rene Rivera, nailing Walker at the plate. Volquez quickly discovered a solution, however, retiring the next nine Mets in a row.

Syndergaard was cruising until the third, when he surrendered a leadoff double to Derek Dietrich. Miguel Rojas hit fly ball that ran away from Cespedes and clanked off his glove in left center. After Volquez struck out, Dee Gordon sent a double past Reyes and the Marlins suddenly had two runs. This is where Rene Rivera took over. Gordon tried to steal third and was nailed with a perfect throw to Reyes. Realmuto singled and Rivera gunned him down with a perfect throw to Walker. Syndergaard then went back to cruising. There was a small spot of trouble in the fifth, but Syndergaard quelled it easily.

In the bottom half of that inning, Bruce sent a changeup over the center field wall, and in the sixth, Conforto did the same, this one to the Shea Bridge. Syndergaard’s final line: 7 innings, 5 hits, no walks 7 strikeouts, 2 runs 1 earned.

The Mets bring their storm to Philadelphia for the start of their first road trip of the year tomorrow, hopefully starting a trend.

18 comments for “Gut Reaction: Mets 5 Marlins 2 (4/9/17)

  1. Chris B
    April 9, 2017 at 11:50 pm

    Brian headlined a post recently about most likely scenarios. I recognize that it’s still early and that it was simply a fun exercise, however I found it way too easy to put ‘Jose Reyes wins the batting title’ last.

    There’s more than the one reason why he was traded and waived. Perhaps we got lucky and caught “lightening” in a bottle last year.

    Either way I’d like to see more Flores/Rivera.

    • david
      April 10, 2017 at 12:17 am

      Agree 100%: Lifetime NY Mets fan, here in the south Pacific.

  2. TexasGusCC
    April 10, 2017 at 1:14 am

    Couple of things:

    Charlie, Syndergaard had 9 K’s. Thor was dominant.

    Chris and David, count me in that your group too until Reyes shows us last year was for real. Give him three out of seven games at a lower spot in the order and Flores and Rivera can split the rest. Further, by getting Reyes out of the top spot, I’d move Cabrera up a spot, bat Granny/Conforto at two, and split up the Duda/Bruce combo. That may be the Mets’ best lineup and neither Bruce or Duda should bat seventh to make sure Reyes is the crowned leadoff man. The Mets have never really rewarded production, but rather through stubbornness have lost plenty of games. Maybe this should end?

    • david
      April 10, 2017 at 1:29 am

      Flores is still young, with some very good years waiting to happen.
      He needs to play More.

    • April 10, 2017 at 9:52 am

      Sorry. It was pretty late when I typed this.

      • Jimmy P
        April 10, 2017 at 11:56 am

        Thanks for typing it!

      • TexasGusCC
        April 10, 2017 at 12:05 pm

        Not a problem Charles, just looking to be useful.

  3. TexasGusCC
    April 10, 2017 at 2:36 am
  4. Metsense
    April 10, 2017 at 7:10 am

    Syndergaard may be something very special. Last night he dominated like Seaver.
    That home run from Conforto was awesome.
    Great arm on Rene Rivera in that one inning.
    The past two years, Alderson has cashed in on his two summer relief pickups, Salas and Reed. Tip of the cap to Sandy.
    Reyes is 34 not 24. We should only expect average production at this point and some rest. Let’s not kick him when he is down but he should not be playing everyday (and he has already sat once) but it is a situation to monitor.
    The home run bats will come alive in Philadelphia.

  5. Jimmy P
    April 10, 2017 at 7:54 am

    Very nice win.

    Thor is such a star.

    ESPN: Dallas Braden interviewing Mr. Met? Guys, no. Just no.

    The Conforto situation will always make me sad, because it was self-created, but I can’t cry over it all season long.

    Jose Reyes isn’t this bad. His 2016 season was alarming however, and I remain shocked by the idea that he was good last season. His OBP against RHP was below .300. This is our leadoff man. The hope is that he’s a batter who has had good, even splits through most of his career, that last season was an aberration. The fear is that he is old, only played 60 games last season, and just doesn’t have it for the long haul in 2017. He needs consistent rest. Not trying to bury the guy; just need to be realistic with usage. It can’t be, “Well, he’s our leadoff hitter.”

    Unfortunately, Flores does not pair well with him at 3B since both guys profile as mashers vs. LHP and less so vs. RHP. I don’t know if Rivera can field an adequate 3B, but we’re going to have to find out.

    This Spring I felt the inevitable solution would be Rosario up at SS and Cabrera at 3B — which would improve overall defense too. A lot depends on Rosario’s development and the timing of a minor injury.

    Rivera, the catcher: great game behind the plate. If anyone was not sold on him as personal catcher for Thor before last night, they should be sold now. Built-in rest for Travis. It’s a good plan.

    • Chris F
      April 10, 2017 at 11:15 am

      I agree in many respects to this assessment. In chatter, I also raised the notion of promoting Rosario and moving Droobs to 3B.

      Flores has shown very little competence on the left side. He is far too slow, and has a weak arm that needs double stepping to generate enough power to make the throw to 1B. As a result he rushes, and its simply bad. Hes much better on the right side, as he self admits.

      • NormE
        April 10, 2017 at 11:46 am

        Chris,
        I agree about Flores at 3rd. Why not Flores seeing more time at second with Walker moving to 3rd? Of course, once Rosario gets promoted the Mets will have to rethink the infield.

  6. Jimmy P
    April 10, 2017 at 8:54 am

    The run production will get better. There are too many weapons, too much talent, for it to remain this bad.

    Six games does not give us enough of a sample size to make sweeping generalizations, but there are obvious things happening at this point. Trends that are in keeping with what happened last season.

    After 6 games, the Mets are last in NL in BA, OBP, and 14th in SLG. There’s no need to dig into esoterica for greater wisdom. Those are big, important stats and the sample size is the largest, most meaningful.

    I wish they were a better BA/OBP team, but they aren’t. Hopefully with this excellent pitching staff, mediocrity on the offensive end — or a notch below that — will be enough.

    • April 10, 2017 at 9:42 am

      My definition of mediocre is below average. I looked up the term online and there are many different interpretations of the word. What’s yours?

      Because if you think the Mets are going to be below average in the NL in runs scored at the end of the year, I’d like to propose a wager.

      • Chris F
        April 10, 2017 at 11:19 am

        So the Mets placed 12th last year in the NL in runs scored. To get to league avg they would have needed to score about 50 more runs. And you think the team is 50+ runs better? Just curious. Is this a “progression” to the mean for RISP?

        • April 10, 2017 at 11:24 am

          Indeed.

          In 2015, the NL average for runs was 666 and the Mets scored 683. And I think this Mets team is better than the 2015 one.

          • Chris F
            April 10, 2017 at 11:36 am

            in 2016, with this exact team in place, the average was 718 and the Mets scored 671.

            • April 10, 2017 at 11:42 am

              And then circle back to the second question you asked me earlier.

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