And the 2018 Luis Castillo Two Hands Award goes to…
Amed Rosario, come on down!
Dominic Smith receives the 2018 Richie Ashburn Yo La Tengo Award, as well.
Zack Wheeler now shares Jacob deGrom’s pain, as a brilliant start goes by the wayside. Wheeler pitched seven innings, surrendering five hits, walking one and striking out 10. Pretty great looking box score line, isn’t it? Too bad the offense couldn’t support it. The Mets entered the seventh leading 1-0, courtesy of a base hit by Rosario and a double by Wilmer Flores in the first. Wheeler did his damndest to make that stick, pitching out of a seond-and-third, no out jam in fifth by striking out the next three batters.He didn’t have the same luck in the seventh. Brandon Crawford — more on him later — led off with a walk. Brandon Belt hit an infield single to Rosario. Evan Longoria lined out to right, with Crawford crossing to third. Wheeler then struck out Steven Duggar and it looked like he’d dance between the raindrops one again. Instead, a popup down the left field line clanked off Rosario’s glove and fell to the ground for a game-tying double.
Now it was up to the bullpens. Robert Gsellman pitched a perfect eighth and ninth. Jerry Blevins did the same in the tenth. Paul Sewald gave up a base hit in the eleventh, but Daniel Zamora finished the inning after giving up a single of his own. The Mets almost ended the game in that eleventh, but Jose Reyes’s liner with two out and two on found its way into Crawford’s glove, rather than the outfield grass. Smith was double-switched into the game in left in the twelfth, when Tyler Bashlor replaced Zamora. Bashlor threw a clean inning. In the top of the thirteenth, Chase d’Arnaud led off with a base hit to left and advanced to second when Bashlor threw away a pickoff attempt, then went to third on a wild pitch. Andrew McCuthchen walked. Jose Panick hit a foul pop to third for the first out. Buster Posey then smacked a grounder to first. Flores came home with the throw, nailing d’Arnaud attempting to score. Crawford hit what appeared to be an inning-ending popup to shallow left. Rosario had it for a moment, but he collided with Smith. The ball popped out of his mitt and fell to the ground as McCutchen gleefully skipped home with the lead. The ungleeful Mets went down quickly in the bottom half.
It’ll be Chris Stratton vs. Steven Matz in game two of this four-game set tomorrow night at Citi Field.