Gut Reaction: Mets 7, Nationals 6 (8/9/19)

Todd Frazier hit a three-run homer to tie it and Michael Conforto had the game-winning hit with two outs to send the Mets to an improbable 7-6 come-from-behind win over the Nationals Friday night. It was the Mets’ seventh-straight win and 14th victory in their last 15 games. It was the first time all season the Mets won a game when they trailed after eight innings, as they were previously 0-44 in these situations.

The Mets twice rallied back from three-run deficits. The game started out a pitcher’s duel between Stephen Strasburg and Marcus Stroman, with Stroman striking out five straight at one point. But both pitchers ran into trouble in the fourth inning.

The Nats put up three runs thanks to an RBI triple by Mets killer Anthony Rendon and a two-run homer by Juan Soto. But the Mets came right back in the bottom of the frame with a two-run homer by Pete Alonso and a solo shot by J.D. Davis.

Both teams had near identical scoring opportunities in the sixth inning. Both teams opened the sixth with runners on the corners and no one out. Neither team scored. The Nats were unable to push a run across thanks to a leaping grab on a hot liner by Amed Rosario. The Mets were turned away because of a terrible check swing call for a strike by the first base umpire against Davis. Not sure what the answer is, but MLB has to do something about the check swing problem. We’re getting strike calls on check swings that in the past wouldn’t even be challenged.

Stroman was sent out to start the seventh inning, despite a triple-digit pitch count and having worked incredibly hard to get out of the sixth. He walked the leadoff batter and was removed for Justin Wilson. After getting Adam Eaton on a strikeout, Wilson faced Rendon, who added to his legacy with a two-run homer.

The Nats added what seemed to be an insurance run in the ninth inning, thanks to the legs of Trea Turner, who advanced to third on a fly out to shallow right and then scored on a wild pitch that got about five feet away from Wilson Ramos.

But with a three-run lead, the Nats called on their closer Sean Doolittle, who the Mets have had great success against this year. Davis led off with a double, Ramos followed with a single to set the stage for the heroics from Frazier and Conforto.

It was an unbelievable win. But going forward, the Mets have to do a better job with Turner and Rendon. You want to keep Turner off the bases at every opportunity. And it’s time for the Mets to give Rendon the Barry Bonds treatment. Soto went 3-for-5 today but I’d rather face him in any situation with the game on the line than Rendon.

23 comments for “Gut Reaction: Mets 7, Nationals 6 (8/9/19)

  1. Hobie
    August 9, 2019 at 11:47 pm

    Great game; baseball is fun, isn’t it?

    Re check swings: the calls are consistent, but the criteria has changed due to the gouged-out cup on the end of the bat these days. When the ump straddling the baseline sees the cup, it’s considered swing. Doesn’t look at wrists or length of stroke.

    • August 10, 2019 at 10:58 am

      If you think check swing calls are consistent inning to inning, much less game to game — then we’re watching different contests.

      • Hobie
        August 10, 2019 at 3:20 pm

        Brian,
        I too was baffled by the inconsistency based on my ancient notion of “swing” (“breaking the wrist” or having the swing arc cover the plate). But I also noticed (quite recently) that with the contrast light-to-dark & vice versa of the end of the bat due the recessed “cup” of modern ML bats, the slow-mo seems to reveal it is that cup presentation to the foul line umps that determine call and not the arm, wrist, hand & bat kinetics.

      • Aging Bull
        August 10, 2019 at 8:01 pm

        Off topic. Why are the in-game chat rooms now protected?

        • August 11, 2019 at 2:32 am

          We had a poster who contributed nothing and further infuriated me by commenting at the site with numerous aliases, even after he was told to stop doing that. I successfully prevented him from commenting at the site but I was unable to prevent him from appearing in the chatters. So, to keep him out, I’ve made the chatters password protected.

          I’ll email you the password and will do that for anyone else who requests it.

          • AgingBull
            August 11, 2019 at 9:06 am

            Thank you Brian! I continue to be psychotically superstitious and have not been on the board since this season has turned around. I will stay off until the Mets return to earth, which I hope is next season!

  2. Chris B
    August 10, 2019 at 12:56 am

    Soto is an impressive talent at only 20 years old and has made significant strides to his approach this year. Rendon is a pure hitter and needs to be treated accordingly, yes maybe Bonds-esque.

    What an amazing game – it sounded like the atmosphere was magical.

  3. TexasGusCC
    August 10, 2019 at 2:53 am

    I didn’t get to see the whole ninth inning live, but when I watched it later, I was impressed by how much of the crowd was still at their seats in the last of the ninth with the Mets coming in trailing by three runs. Anyone that left regretted it! This game was an instant classic.

    KGR were commenting on the noise level of the crowd and it will be louder tomorrow with the fans smelling blood after tonight’s amazing come from behind victory. I love Rendon, but I wouldn’t be afraid to pitch to him. Can’t let the Nats think there’s something the Mets are worried about. As for Turner, if we are already mad about Kelenic being given away, tell me how the Padres’ fans feel about giving away Turner? That kid is smart and very talented. It’s mind boggling how the Nats didn’t win something all these years with that core they had put together. Brings to mind the Expos…. wait a minute, they are the Expos!

    Did anyone see Alonso sprint out to mug Conforto? That boy has a high gear. Good to know.

    • Peter Hyatt
      August 10, 2019 at 8:35 am

      Gus,

      I missed it too but saw it this morning. It was great to see how many remained for the 9th, down by three.

      I do wonder why Mickey sent (allowed?) Stroman to pitch the 7th.

      I hope he didn’t yield to Stroman, who is competitive & emotional. It sets bad precedent and for some Met fans it brings an ugly memory from 2015.

      Rosario has become a joy to watch.

  4. TexasGusCC
    August 10, 2019 at 3:08 am

    Also, just saw the Nationals’ sixth inning that Brian was referring to. With first and third, on a perfect double play chopper to third base – which the defense was set-up for – Frazier pivots and throws home. Soto gets in a rundown and the runners advance to second and third. Then, with the infield in, Rosario leaps to snag a liner for the second out and Strasburg strikes out. No runs. What if Rosario doesn’t get to that ball and two runs score instead of just the one they were willing to give up? Gutsy risk by Frazier, but it worked out. It’s better to be lucky than good, because if two runs would have scored and the inning continued… Earlier in the year, Rosario mistimes his jump.

  5. August 10, 2019 at 8:44 am

    Best win of the year ! Thank you Toddfather and I apologize man for critizing your butt all year. Frazier is what he is, good defense, occasional clutch hits and some HR’s, some K’s and a borderline .250 avg, great in the clubhouse and vet savy.
    Those are all things any contender needs, not everyone is an all star, not everyone needs to be on a winning team. The other amazing thing about last night’s win is that this was Conforto’s 1st walf off win ?? What ? This guy has been a key Met since he arrived. Terrific two way player with guts and clutch performer too. He dove after Rendon’s triple and and nearly got spiked in his face ! LFGM !! Thor and Cy Young next, sweep the Nats and hell will have been broken through erasing weak 1st half.
    Hey wouldn’t Wilmer look good on bench right now ? Mr Walk Off Met himself.

    • TexasGusCC
      August 10, 2019 at 2:42 pm

      Edwin, I have killed Frazier too for not using the whole field and swinging from his heels, but was fair to say it was not his fault that he is batting in the middle of the order. Finally, Mr Manager moves up Rosario, makes a few moves and Frazier is at #7 where he belongs. His glove is still fine and he isn’t breaking up rallies.

      However, I loved the HR! Statcast has him at 29 seconds to circle the bases. Remember when Cespedes took 30 seconds and all the world was up in arms? If they throw at Frazier tonight, Thor is going to drill someone.

      Flores just came off the IL, and hasn’t done much this year. He really needs to start lifting and practice defense.

      • August 10, 2019 at 3:29 pm

        When Frazier hit the HR last night, I asked in the Chatter about you, Gus!

        • TexasGusCC
          August 10, 2019 at 4:43 pm

          Brian, when I looked up at MLBN Strike Zone and saw what just happened, for most of the night I felt regretful for all the things I said about Frazier. For one night, I loved him! He had a great game. I saw that highlight five or six times!

  6. John Fox
    August 10, 2019 at 10:53 am

    Doolittle threw a lot of pitches in the ninth.. I do hope he is available to pitch again tonight!

    • August 10, 2019 at 11:00 am

      I want to laugh at this. And then I remember who’s in the Mets’ pen…

    • TJ
      August 10, 2019 at 1:03 pm

      I’m not sure what a worse name for a pitcher is – Doo little or Walker. In any event, it is nice to see the opponent’s pen implode for once rather than it always being the Met pen.

      Lugo and Diaz are well rested. Hopefully with Syndergaard and deGrom set to go, we’ll need few innings from the pen.

  7. MattyMets
    August 10, 2019 at 11:00 am

    Wow, what a win! So much fun being a Mets fan right now.

    I used to think of Anthony Rendon as this annoying average player who saved his best for the Mets – like Mikael Franco – but now that he’s established himself as a perennial All-Star, he’s more like Freddie Freeman/Chase Utley. I hate him still, but at least I respect him. He’s in for one helluva payday this winter.

    • TexasGusCC
      August 10, 2019 at 2:47 pm

      Matt, I always saw that short swing, like a Bill Madlock type swing, and figured he would be pretty good someday. I never expected MVP numbers. The same agent that got Harper $330MM for 13 years is waiting to get Rendon $300 for ten years.

      • August 10, 2019 at 3:53 pm

        Harper entered free agency after his age 25 season
        Rendon will enter after his age 29 season

        I’m not sure what the best contract signed by a position player entering his age 30 and up seasons has been the last three years. But I’d be beyond shocked if Rendon got that much on the open market. Maybe the Nats step up and sign him to a big deal but even then, I don’t think $300 million is in play and it wouldn’t surprise me a bit if he failed to reach $200 million.

        I think the absolute best-case scenario is what Greinke got — 6/$206.5 — but I expect it to be considerably below that.

        • Name
          August 10, 2019 at 4:21 pm

          “best contract signed by a position player entering his age 30 and up seasons has been the last three years.”

          1. Cespedes (31) 4/110
          2. JD Martinez (30) 5/110
          3. Fowler (30) 5/82.5

          Best infielder that was not a 1b was Turner (32) 4/64.

          I initially predicted 5/130 last night, but i might back that down given his extensive injury history. Only played 150 games twice in his career. I expect him to get 100+ mil, but even that i can’t be certain in this climate. More than 150 mil would be a shocker and a terrible overpay

          • TexasGusCC
            August 10, 2019 at 4:52 pm

            Rendon is very good defensively and plays second also. I said 10/$300 because if Harper got 13 years at 26, Rendon couldn’t get 10 at 29? But, I understand that he is already into the prime years, so I’ll back off: 5/$150 with vesting options.

            Of those other guys, only Cespedes had a good defensive rep but everyone knew about the foot problems. This is a fun exercise though.

            • Name
              August 11, 2019 at 1:54 pm

              Well, using Harper as a comp, then your 10 year deal would only prorate out to 250 mil. But no one is expecting Harper to provide the same value for when he’s 39 vs 26. The phillies are probably expecting 40-50 mil worth of production in his age 26-30 years, so if we subtract an average of 45 mil for those 4 years, then the remaining years are only worth around 17 mil, which would put Rendon’s 10 year comp at only 170 mil.

              And then you have to subtract the fact that Rendon has little stardom and won’t sell many extra tickets and merchandise and the fact that he’s more injury prone

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