Gut reaction: Mets 3, Phillies 1 – 5/11/18

The Mets rose from the dead tonight to defeat the Phillies in dramatic fashion 3-1 on the road. Down 1-0 in the ninth inning, the Mets seemed destined to get blanked again and waste a good pitching performance by Steven Matz and the bullpen, until Michael Conforto stepped to the plate.

With the count 1-2 against closer Hector Neris, Conforto got all of a fat fastball, launching it over the right field wall and into the AT&T sign for a two-run home run to give the Mets a 2-1 lead. New Mets catcher Devin Mesoraco followed with a home run of his own, his first in orange and blue, to pad the lead. But Jeurys Familia didn’t need the insurance, as he set down the Phillies in order to close out the game for his 11th save.

Steven Matz allowed just one run but only lasted five innings as problems controlling his curveball and a stingy home plate umpire led to four walks and a high pitch count. A first inning home run by Odubel Herrera was the only real damage against Matz, but it could have been worse. Thanks to a misplayed double play opportunity by Amed Rosario, Matz had to effectively get four outs in the fifth the escape a bases loaded jam. Seth Lugo, Paul Sewald, AJ Ramos and Familia each contributed a scoreless inning in relief.

The Mets couldn’t muster much of anything against Jake Arrieta who held them scoreless for 7.1 innings despite having no feel for his own curveball. The ace righty, who was very much available in the off-season, now sports a 2.59 ERA. He may not throw as hard as he used to, but he’s a five-pitch pitcher who can still stymie an offense. The Mets waited him out and did their damage against their struggling closer instead.

Conforto also delivered a single, a walk and a hard hit out to deep center field. Hopefully, this is a sign of him breaking out of his rut, but this offense could really use him. Asdrubal Cabrera also contributed two hits and a walk to the victory.

The series continues tomorrow with Noah Syndergaard trying to make it two in a row against Zach Eflin who’s been dominant in his first two starts this year. Let’s go Mets!

8 comments for “Gut reaction: Mets 3, Phillies 1 – 5/11/18

  1. TexasGusCC
    May 12, 2018 at 1:54 am

    Matt, as I picked up the radio call to start the ninth, I have some additional thoughts:

    1. Neris had not given up a bomb in 30 appearances going back to last year. Two pitches before Conforto’s blast, he hit one off the second deck that was foul. I thought, like always, we can’t get a break.

    2. Gary Cohen mentioned after the homeruns how Reyes was in line to be one of the goats as he was picked off in the seventh inning but didn’t explain the circumstances. In the restaurant business, we say more mistakes happen when we are slow than when we are busy. Seems that the boringness brings a lack of focus that working instinctively avoids. If it’s the case for Jose Reyes, he needs to find a way to focus and accept his new role, being prepared and into the game at all times – like a mentor. However, Cohen’s mentioning that he was a possible goat over one mistake, shows the pressure that every little misplay seems to have for this team due to their lack of recent success.

    3. Stephen Matz joining Zack Wheeler in figuring out how to right the ship is more important than the offense clicking. The Phillies starting pitching is pretty stout this series with Eflin and Nola coming up, so the Mets need to be opportunistic offensively and our big guns on the mound need to fire like the big guns they are.

    • Pete in Iowa
      May 12, 2018 at 9:26 am

      I understand what you are saying Gus, but getting picked off of first — by a right hander no less — in a 1-0 game in the seventh inning with 2 out is not a “little misplay.” I think it’s a pretty big mistake which can’t be made in that particular situation, especially by an experienced veteran “leader.”

  2. Pete from NJ
    May 12, 2018 at 7:50 am

    Besides thinking that this team is a flashback to good pitching-poor hitting a la 2015, Michael Conforto changes everything. Much needed for the team and the fans. Long season with so much drama…baseball.

    On the manager taking out Cespedes in the double switch although the announcers didn’t like it, I did Here’s a guy with bad wheels, playing every day just wearing out. The team needs him for 150 games. Keep him fresh.

  3. May 12, 2018 at 9:17 am

    I didn’t see the game but just looking at the box score and play x play and I’d say Philly deserved to lose. Their veteran starter is cruising and they take him out because of the 100-pitch bogeyman in mid inning. And they relieve him when a batter is coming up that was 0-3 with two strikeouts against him.

    If there was an injury that I’m unaware of, I’ll retract this. But otherwise this was just dumb.

    • Pete in Iowa
      May 12, 2018 at 9:28 am

      I agree Brian, but in “today’s game” 95% of managers — if not all 30 — would make the same exact move.

    • Name
      May 12, 2018 at 12:38 pm

      I said the same exact thing in the game chatter – “i hope the Phillies lose because they pulled Arrieta just becuase he’s at 101 pitches”

      The baseball gods listened.

  4. Pete in Iowa
    May 12, 2018 at 9:31 am

    I was particularly puzzled that Guillorme played third in the ninth last night and not short, with Reyes sliding over to third. Seems like that would have been the optimal defensive alignment.
    Really, really good to see Conforto pull the ball with authority for the first time this year. The two balls he hit up the middle earlier in the game are also a sign that he is finally getting his timing back.
    Big, big chance to build some momentum tonight. LGM!!!

    • TexasGusCC
      May 12, 2018 at 10:36 am

      I wonder how much Callaway and Co. are prepped on their call-ups. Worse would be, if they were worried about a player’s feelings. Playing a new player out of position is a terrible move in the ninth inning of a winnable game.

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