Gut Reaction: Nationals 7, Mets 4 (8/11/19)

The Nationals averted a sweep with a 7-4 win over the Mets Sunday afternoon at Citi Field.

Washington jumped on top early, thanks to three unearned runs in the first inning off Jacob deGrom. Two soft singles and a walk loaded the bases. deGrom got a ground ball to the right side that should have ended the inning. But Pete Alonso once again dove for a ball that his 2B was in line to field. Alonso got the ball and threw from his knees. It wasn’t a bad throw but deGrom couldn’t handle it and it cleared the bases.

After the Mets battled back to tie, Asdrubal Cabrera put the Nats back in front in the seventh inning with a two-run double. And they added two more runs in the ninth when Edwin Diaz served up a gopher ball, his fourth homer allowed in his last six games.

On a positive note, the Mets got a good outing from Jeurys Familia, who struck out the side in the eighth inning. Also, Brad Brach made his Mets debut and retired the only batter he faced. With the continuing struggles from Diaz, the Mets will need other relievers to step up and give quality innings alongside Seth Lugo.

Next up is a three-game set against the first-place Braves in Atlanta, which begins on Tuesday. Zack Wheeler puts his 15-inning scoreless streak on the line in the opener. And the Mets will avoid facing Mike Soroka in this series. Soroka is 4-0 with a 2.19 ERA in four career games against the Mets.

16 comments for “Gut Reaction: Nationals 7, Mets 4 (8/11/19)

  1. Chris F
    August 11, 2019 at 8:31 pm

    No big. great series overall, and were livin rent free in the Nats head. Im glad we were not the only team with massive gaps in the pen. It will cripple the Nats, who I see as on the outside looking in, and it could be our undoing as well. For now, NL parity is really a sight to behold.

    • Metsense
      August 12, 2019 at 9:56 am

      The Mets relievers are 5th in MLB in ERA in the past 30 days. That only leaves 25 teams that you are grouping the Mets with instead of grouping them with the four teams that don’t have massive gaps in their bullpens.

  2. Pete from NJ
    August 11, 2019 at 8:41 pm

    Too bad about that throw from Alfonso to deGrom in the 1st inning. That’s a play the guys have been practicing since February and it just didn’t happen today.

    Hopefully the flight to Atlanta went well with a day of rest with a fresh start for Tuesday;s game.

    Feels a lot like 2015 with every inning being a pins and needles moment. Much better feel than a few weeks ago? The guys seem to be enjoying it maybe more than the fans are?

    • August 11, 2019 at 8:57 pm

      We were told that Alonso wasn’t very good defensively. But he’s been excellent scooping balls out of the dirt, which is a trait you want your 1B to have.

      But he doesn’t have a feel for which ball is his and which ball is the 2nd baseman’s. A 4-3 is much more desirable than a 3-1. He’s being aggressive and you don’t want to stop guys from playing that way. But he’s got to know where the 2B is, especially with a shift on. Maybe the answer is for the 2B to act like a CF and call for the ball whenever he can make the play. But there may not be enough time to do that on a hard grounder.

      • Mike W
        August 11, 2019 at 9:51 pm

        I bet that Alonso will really work at that in the off season.

        • Chris F
          August 11, 2019 at 11:37 pm

          What I dont understand is why he doesnt put a little mark in the dort as a guide.

  3. David Klein
    August 11, 2019 at 10:14 pm

    Diaz is a disaster area but with the shape the bullpens in you can’t hide him unless Brach and Familia turn it around. Brach is I guess a possibility and really imo he should have been double switched in and pitched the 7th especially when you were one reliever short or two since Mickey refuses to use Mazza.

    The defensive gaffes in the first were less on Alonso imo and more on deGrom for slowing down and I have no idea how Ramos butchered deGrom’s throw. The defensive issues really drove deGrom’s pitch count way up and got him out after five. Jake was good after that and got some web gems from Conforto and Panik.

    I dunno why Mickey let Avilan face Suzuki but thankfully Mickey and Avilan were bailed out by Brach. Avilan dominates lefties but is not good at all vs righties and shouldn’t face them.

    DeGrom igniting the rally was awesome as was Mcneil’s double, but the Mets offense couldn’t get the big hit after that though they had bad babip luck with Ramos and Frazier and others. Davis got screwed on a 3-2 pitch call. That inning could have gone differently if not for that awful hbp call on Alonso by the ump. Who knows why the Nats didn’t call for a review.

    Gsellman with his stuff should be better but is just a middling middle reliever and he’s been a bitter disappointment since 2017. Wilson is starting to show cracks and his fip is really bad.

    Look I’ll give Diaz a bit of a break for not pitching in nearly a week but he’s been so fucking bad since the Dodgers series since May I dunno what to do with him.

    All in a very good series just wanted a sweep but you can’t complain.

    • Metsense
      August 12, 2019 at 10:04 am

      “All In a very good series but wanted to sweep but you can’t complain” but you just did. LOL
      Actually Dave, you have made valid points but I couldn’t resist your last sentence.

  4. JImO
    August 11, 2019 at 10:53 pm

    Send Diaz to the minors for 10 days so he can straighten out.

  5. NYM6986
    August 12, 2019 at 7:01 am

    A lot of valid points made. Took two out of three from the team ahead of us. How can we not be thrilled with that? On to Atlanta. One game at a time. Keep the faith.

  6. August 12, 2019 at 8:29 am

    Mets need to be in Playoff Mode regarding Diaz…. he cannot be the automatic finisher any longer.

    It’s tough for a struggling reliever to work out issues in season, 3-5 batters at a time. He needs some low leverage outings….Somewhere. A two inning Opener at AAA and a few low leverage spots for the Mets????

    He cannot be the designated closer at this point.

  7. Metsense
    August 12, 2019 at 9:35 am

    Gut reaction: sure we wanted to get a sweep but this isn’t the NBA or the NFL. The MLB tends to trend .550 % for a playoff team . In other words, every 20 games the team wins 11 games and losses 9 games. I’m glad they won the series and they’re going to Atlanta so I hope they can win that the series also.
    Diaz gopher ball had no bearing on the outcome but it does bear on the outcome of his role as closer. Lugo should get the job.

    • boomboom
      August 12, 2019 at 4:59 pm

      I think it did have a bearing on the outcome. Going into the bottom of the 9th with a 1 run deficit, having just come back a little bit in the previous couple of innings, against a closer who you have owned lately is much different than a 3 run deficit.

  8. MattyMets
    August 12, 2019 at 10:12 am

    Sweep would have been amazing, but was
    Not meant to be. Alonso’s error hurt more
    than just the 3 unearned runs. It also helped drive up JDG’s pitch count. This team is not equipped to win a game with a 5 inning start. I’d have left deGrom one more inning and let some of the relievers go longer too. After
    Using 5 pitchers to get through 3 innings I was worried that we’d have JD Davis pitching in the 11th. “Thankfully” Diaz put that to bed allowing another gopher ball.

    Díaz needs an adjustment on his delivery. To throw an effective slider with a 3/4 arm slot, the pitching hand has to stay on top of the ball (see Scherzer). Otherwise, you end up throwing hittable cement mixers (see Díaz). A breaking pitch that stays on the same plane is too easy to barrel up.

  9. Bob
    August 12, 2019 at 10:22 am

    They should have swept – Your ace on the mound and momentum but then we returned to our old 2019 Mets. Error in first inning puts deGrom in the hole and forces him to throw to many pitches and leaves after 5. We catch up again but the bullpen can’t do anything and when we need a big hit we only have 3 PHs on the bench – all hitting below or at .200. Maybe someone can tell me why we have Altherr (.079) hitter still on the team (and Lagares who hits .185) and we cut Hechavarria. Can’t win a penant with no PHs, or a reliable middle reliever, or no support for deGrom. We had a chance to put the Nationals on their rear and we kept them in the chase. Atlanta will be a real test.

  10. Metsense
    August 12, 2019 at 1:07 pm

    If they were the same “old 2019 Mets” they would not have gone 15 -1 in their previous 16 games. The last time I pulled up fangraphs and looked at the relievers in the major leagues I have never seen one that had a 0.00 ERA. Earlier in the season, the Mets had swept there Nats and the Nats still managed to get ” into the chase.” A sweep would have been nice but it wouldn’t take the Nats out of the playoff race. Bob, maybe you should reevaluate your expectations.

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