Gut Reaction: Mets 4, Giants 3 – 5/8/2017

Jacob deGrom and the bullpen held the Giants to three runs and the Mets offense, after stranding runners on the bases all night, finally came through with a big walk off win to take the opener of this three-game home series.

deGrom only lasted six innings due to a high pitch count, but his solid performance included 11 strikeouts. He put the Mets behind the 8-ball, serving up a two-run home run to Hunter Pence in the first inning, but settled down from there. Neil Walker put the Mets on the board with an RBI double off Matt Moore in the bottom of the first and TJ Rivera tied it at two apiece in the fifth with an RBI double, but the Mets wasted a golden opportunity stranding runners on second and third with no outs.

The Giants retook the lead on a solo home run by Buster Posey in the sixth, but the Mets tied it back up in their bottom half of the inning on an RBI double by Curtis Granderson, who pinch hit for deGrom. The bullpens took over from there, trading a few zeros until the bottom of the eighth when Asdrubal Cabrera had a chance to be a hero with the bases loaded, but grounded into a rally killing double play.

After a scoreless inning from Addison Reed, the Mets came into the bottom of the ninth with the score still tied at three. Michael Conforto drew a leadoff walk and after T.J. Rivera and Jay Bruce both popped up, Wilmer Flores got on base on an infield single to set the table for Walker. With two strikes, Walker fouled off a series of pitches from Hunter Strickland before hooking a breaking pitch into the right field corner, easily scoring Conforto with the winning run.

Meanwhile, the Nationals and Marlins both lost and the Mets, now just one game under .500, sit in second place. Tomorrow the series continues with Zach Wheeler taking on Jeff Samardzija.

30 comments for “Gut Reaction: Mets 4, Giants 3 – 5/8/2017

  1. May 8, 2017 at 11:15 pm

    Only 6 innings? That may be the longest our SP has gone in two weeks.

    It felt like a game we should have won in a blowout. But the bottom line is we won and didn’t need extra innings to do it.

    The Salas count stands at six games pitched in seven days. Has any pitcher in MLB had that usage pattern this year? Meanwhile, a single tear runs down the cheek of Tim Byrdak.

    • Name
      May 8, 2017 at 11:46 pm

      Byrdak? How about our old friend Pedro? He did it many times, and then bested it multiple times.

      The first time he did it was 4/21/08-4/30/08. 6 games in 7 days. And then later that season again 7/30/08/-8/7/08. Also 6 in 7 days.

      In 2009 Pedro did 6 games in 6 days from 6/16-6/21.

      But the coup de gras was 2010. It started in early May when he was first asked to do 7 games in 9 days. 5/2/10-5/10/10. Then because he wasn’t used enough Manual had him complete the trick the following week with another 6 games in 7 games. 5/17-5/23. Then he had 2 more months of rest before he was asked to do it yet again from 7/19-7/25. And if that wasn’t enough, with 1 month left on his contract, Manual decided to just use him as a whipping dog. In the final month of the season (with expanded 40 man rosters mind you), Feliciano turned in a herculean effort with 8 games in 9 day from 8/31-9/8, all while posting a 0.00 ERA and holding opposing batters to a .465 OPS. And after Manual so generously game him the next 2 days off, he was asked to do 8 games in 9 days from 9/11-9/19. And just for good measure, to end the season, 9/24-9/29 he did another 6 games in 6 days, including pitching both ends of a double header.In case you were wondering how much that added up to, that’s 23 games in 30 games in September of 2010.

      Yea, it’s no wonder his arm fell arm after that and he didn’t end up throwing a single pitch for the Yankees.

      But back to Salas, i wonder if any right hander has ever done it. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s the first or if it’s rarely done.

    • MattyMets
      May 9, 2017 at 9:49 am

      epilogue on Tim Byrdak:
      Byrdak works at the Bo Jackson’s Elite Sports Facility in Lockport, IL and gives pitching lessons alongside former and current major leaguers including John Cangelosi and Dean Anna.

      He’s only 43. Perhaps he’s ripe for a comeback.

  2. Metsense
    May 9, 2017 at 7:54 am

    deGrom , like many of the starters who are recovering from 2016 injuries, did not have his pin point command we are used to seeing and needed 105 pitches to give the team six innings.I would rather see 110 pitch counts now and get distance and then skipped a start in August like was done in the past if he becomes fatigued.
    Granderson continues his thaw but will he having a starting spot when Cespedes ,in two weeks, and Duda ,in one week, returns? Knowing the Met past injury history, he probably will.
    It is difficult to understand the abuse of Salas (and other Met relievers). Salas has reverse splits and pulling him after two outs only to burn another relief pitcher (Blevins) confounds me. Salas pitching in that spot confounds me.
    Name^ , great informative research.
    The Mets have now won three series in a row and need another win to make it four. That should be what is on the players minds. “Yesterday was obviously not a good day,” Walker said, referencing Harvey’s suspension after he had the game winning hit.The thoughts should be on the Team victory not the indiscretions of an Individual. Harvey is a distraction.

    • Jimmy P
      May 9, 2017 at 8:34 am

      I am working on one theory with Jake:

      That his control issues stem from his new health, his new velocity & better movement. That is, he’s having trouble control this amazingly lively fastball.

      I believe it will come.

      Currently he reminds me of Wheeler. The swing-and-miss stuff — the movement — the wildness — all contribute to pitch count issues. It’s sort of the curse of being so hard to hit.

      I’m not clear on what the solution is, beyond better control. Some would bring out the cliche, “pitch to contact,” but that’s a hard sell, easier to say than to do. I guess Jake (and Zack) have to learn when to unleash the big swing-and-miss movement and when to maybe take a smidge off to paint a corner.

      • MattyMets
        May 9, 2017 at 9:51 am

        Jimmy P – I have the same hypothesis. deGrom is throwing as hard or harder than ever. His fastball movement is filthy. If he can start to harness it, he’ll have a fantastic season.

      • TexasGusCC
        May 9, 2017 at 9:58 am

        James, Collins said after the game that it’s a mechanical thing he’s working with Warthen on. He rushes his delivery causing him to “fly-open” and leave his pitches up. That’s also why he loses command and has high pitch counts. He seems to be trying to pick up his pace without properly timing the windup.

        • Jimmy P
          May 9, 2017 at 10:30 am

          Yeah, I heard that, and heard Zeile say the same thing.

          (He’s not terrible, right? Good to get a break from Nelson.)

          But rather than parrot those guys, I had my own thoughts that I hadn’t seen expressed. This year’s fastball is new. I don’t believe the theories are mutually exclusive. I’m sure that Collins and Warthen know what they are talking about when it comes to his mechanics. A split-second off. It’s not something I can discern as a fan watching on tv, just don’t have that level of expertise.

          • TexasGusCC
            May 9, 2017 at 11:45 am

            It kind of reminded me of the explanation given to Cole Trickle in Days of Thunder by Robert Duvall’s character: “A loose backend is more speed but less control”. Could be that the flying front shoulder open has created a quicker whip to the plate, but the front shoulder was giving control that is now lacking. For all the lessons the young guys learned from Colon about needing location more than speed, it seems like a weird mistake to hear being made.

  3. Jimmy P
    May 9, 2017 at 8:26 am

    Great win. Nice to see Walker, Granderson contribute. Need those guys.

    Two more hits for Flores.

    Jake is tough hombre.

    Bullpen gives us three scoreless, Mets win one-run game, so of course 360 is filled with complaints about how it was achieved. Because: broken record.

    Bochy is widely regarded as one of the best managers, if not “the” best, at bullpen management. Three World Series rings attest to it. And guess what? TC is essentially working from his same playbook, believing in matchups, trying to get his pitchers in the best position to succeed. What an idiot! He knows Mets need these wins right now.

    • Chris F
      May 9, 2017 at 8:36 am

      Well thats just wrong. When it came late inthe game and Flores came up, Bochy kept the lefty in to face Flores, who promptly flied to right field. His reliever was doing great, and he chose to trust him in opposition to going straight to match ups. Collins would never have had the onions to do that.

      Anyways, Jake clearly has control issues. He is a tough gut, but we need 3 more outs from him. Very nice AB for Walker to get the walk off. Flores again shows 3B is beyond his capabilities with a lousy arm.

    • May 9, 2017 at 8:58 am

      It’s a legitimate complaint and it will be continued to be discussed here. Please point to me the last time Bochy used a reliever six times in seven games.

      Edit: Removed personal attack.

    • Metsense
      May 9, 2017 at 9:09 am

      From MLB game wrapup:
      But Bochy did not turn to lefty Steven Okert when Granderson emerged as a pinch-hitter with two outs in the bottom of the sixth, instead watching Granderson rip an RBI double off right-hander George Kontos to tie things, 3-3.
      Bochy pointed out that Collins probably would have summoned a right-handed pinch-hitter had he installed Okert. Besides, Bochy added, “Tell me when the guy [Granderson] is going to hit a double. The guy’s batting .130 [actually .133 at the time]. George has been our seventh-inning guy.”

      That is not the same playbook. Bochy is a good manager that does not live and die with matchups. He said so last night.
      TC has led the Mets to two consecutive playoff spots. He also has been a successful manager. I would love to read a first person article on his extreme thinking regarding match ups. I would love to have the thought process explained, “his baseball philosophy”, because it is extreme regarding bullpen usage and appearances by relievers.

      • May 9, 2017 at 9:25 am

        But if there was a book about it, could we be sure that it was his thoughts and not what he was told to think by Alderson?

  4. Jimmy P
    May 9, 2017 at 8:41 am

    On Harvey, my two cents:

    The media and the fans are overreacting. They love a big kerfuffle, all this drama, eat it up. Some hysterical fans talk about trading him now, getting rid of the clubhouse “cancer,” and so on.

    Poppycock.

    He remains a key to the season. Can’t trade him now. What club needs is for Matt Harvey to make it right with his teammates by going out and doing his job. He can be as big a dick as he wants to be — there’s room for all kinds in every clubhouse. They need him to pitch well, continue on his hard road to recovery, and win games. That’s it.

    A distraction? Sure, I suppose, until the next one. Baseball is filled with all kinds of players. The only thing that matters — or 98% of it — is what they do between the lines. Guy has got to work his way back. The media, the fans? Mostly nuts.

    Keep Calm and Win Games.

    • MattyMets
      May 9, 2017 at 9:55 am

      Jimmy P –

      Completely agree. Between the lines, we knew Harvey wouldn’t be lights out early in the season as he adjusts and bounces back from surgery. He looked pretty good in his first four starts despite this. He had two bad starts – it’s not a lost season as I pointed out last week. As for the off field stuff, he needs to man up and address the media – apologize to the team publicly and make it clear that his priority is to pitch his ass off and win games for this franchise. As for what his future holds, it’s all speculation.

    • TexasGusCC
      May 9, 2017 at 10:02 am

      James, Harvey was reportedly out until 4am at a club in New York. Can’t blame the Mets here. They can’t be 24+1. Harvey likes the paycheck, he needs to like the job too.

      • Jimmy P
        May 9, 2017 at 10:22 am

        On the 4 AM thing, big deal. You think he’s the only one?

        However, if it indicates a deeper & more consistent problem, it’s a concern.

        He needs to do his job.

        And, I think, Mets need him.

        It’s like when Reyes was struggling and some people wanted to cut him loose, send him down, whatever. Same with Robles after a bad outing.

        As an organization, you have to look at it like this: How could this work out best for the NY Mets? You identify that best possible outcome and work toward achieving that ideal result. Reyes starts to hit, plays better, lineup gets infused with speed and energy, more lineup flexibility > dumping the guy. So before you jump to a bad outcome, you strive to engender the positive result.

        Trash Familia after a rough beginning, or support him and hope that the team gains one of MLB’s top closers?

        With Harvey, the ideal result is that the club collectively moves beyond the media kerfuffle, he steadily improves, reels off two strong months in a row, and helps solidify the rotation (and helps the pen in the process), while the Mets win ballgames.

        I’d put all my effort into “Outcome A,” long before I’d move on to far less appealing options. Dumping him might feel good for some folks, a momentary pleasure, but it won’t make the 2017 Mets any better.

        • TexasGusCC
          May 9, 2017 at 11:49 am

          I agree, and never did I want to bench Reyes – although I did agree with the flipping of him and Cabrera – nor do I want to get rid of Harvey. But, Eraff was right when he said that there is a disconnect of the commitment to the task at hand. Harvey can go straight through without any shut-eye, I’ve done it, but he needs to be at work.

  5. Eraff
    May 9, 2017 at 8:59 am

    Baseball’s Pay system is a Big Driver behind the Harvey and Syndee situations.

    Issues of Trust and Commitment with two guys who are pitching for Bird seed, waiting for their Freedom and a Pay Day.

    If I’m Thor, I don’t want anyone out their with a Pic of my Body to use against Me in a Negotiation…if you see what happens with Health and Personal Info in the Pre-Draft of the NFL, you can better understand the self-protective nature of a Young and Underpaid Player.

    It’s not that it’s right or wrong..it’s the IsNess of the Reality that these Guys are in.

    Harvey’s situation, beyond his Dickishness, seems to be that he’s taking his Sweet Ass time to get around to actually Pitching…Pitching!. Right now, if the Slider doesn’t work, he throws another–He’s Working on His Slider!!!…he’s not Pitching!!! He wants to arrive at “Next Year”…Healthy…with his Pet Pitch…to Hell with Now!!!

    All Symptoms…. if Terry can get this train on track, as he has in the past, it will be a miracle…guys in Walk Years…. …etc.

    • Jimmy P
      May 9, 2017 at 10:01 am

      Three weeks ago the general feeling was that Harvey was working his way back, saying the right things, and showing promise that he was moving in the right direction.

      Then some things happened, two consecutive starts where he was moved up at the 11th hour. Plus what might be a drinking problem of some kind (wild guess).

      And suddenly some take him to be a clubhouse cancer who has to be traded away, and so on. As if the team had any pitching depth to spare.

      I’m sticking with the big picture on Harvey. Formerly great (great!) pitcher working his way back from injury. He may need to work harder. He may have needed this kick in the pants. But I still see him as key to the 2017 season. If he’s good, Mets have a shot.

      I still believe he can be very good this season.

      OTOH, he might be in Betty Ford by the end of the week.

      Who knows!

  6. Chris F
    May 9, 2017 at 9:07 am

    The Mets fan base adores the ’86 Mets, who were clearly a bunch of bad hombres. So for Harvey to be out until 4 am getting drunk is hardly a matter…nor is following that up with a round of golf before the game. What does matter is when those things become an excuse not to do your job, then blame a serious physical condition, migraine headaches, as the cause. That’s what a high school kid does and skips school or calls in sick to miss a shift at Subway. This is not what an elite athlete who is a grown man does. I guess Syndergaard hoovering all the attention finally took a toll on Harvey. Like Eraff says Mr Harvey, its time for you to pitch like a pro.

    • Jimmy P
      May 9, 2017 at 9:53 am

      Yes, you are right.

      Get it done between the white lines.

      At the same time, yes, this does have a Doc Gooden vibe to it.

      Has the organization handled this beautifully? I have my doubts. You can’t claim to keep it internal while in effect inviting the NY media into the kerfuffle — you know how it’s going to go. Speculation, rumors, trolls.

      • Chris F
        May 9, 2017 at 10:16 am

        Harvey made a mistake in believing it was somehow easy to conceal. As they say in legal circles, the cover up may be worse than the crime. In Harvey’s case the cover up exposes him as the man-child we fear he is. What I didn’t want to say, but like you brought to light, was a comparison with Doc. I just hope this is not an out of control tail spin. It would be easy to imagine though: high flying superstar on track for a 250M$ contract succumbs to repeated injuries that cannot be assigned to improper employer behavior, never gets a FA contract, and ends up on the short end of the stick. Thats a long fall from grace.

  7. Eraff
    May 9, 2017 at 9:09 am

    Is TJ becoming the Met’s 3baseman by playing 1st?… or is Flores becoming the 3rd Baseman by Butchering 3b? Two young guys making some contributions is a big plus….and a Great Problem to have!

    Maybe TJ Forces himself into some OF time?… LF TJ, CF Confee, RF Booooo

    • May 9, 2017 at 9:23 am

      I hope it’s the former for TJ.

      Granderson has three doubles and a homer in his last five games, so it’s hard to see TJ getting much time there.

  8. Metsense
    May 9, 2017 at 9:17 am

    Bueller?……Bueller?……Bueller?

  9. NormE
    May 9, 2017 at 12:49 pm

    I think that you guys have made some very good points about Harvey. I think it’s time for Scott Boras to take Matt aside and explain the economic facts of life to him, rather than letting Matt file a grievance, thus dragging a no-win situation out.
    There is too much money on the table. Surely Boras realizes that not getting Harvey back on track is bad business for both of them.

  10. MattyMets
    May 9, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    NormE – that’s a good point. Harvey returning to form is good for everyone – him, the team, his agent, the fans. There’s no reason not to root for him.

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