The visiting Mets prevailed over St. Louis Tuesday night 3-0, assuring the Mets of winning this series, and making the Mets 6-0 in winning series to start the season. The game was nowhere near as exciting as the barn-burner of an opener of the series, but it counts the same in the scorebook as they say.

The Mets kicked off the scoring in the third when Jeff McNeil led off with a liner to right that the hustling McNeil turned into a double. James McCann then drove a long shot to dead center for another double, scoring McNeill in the process. Starling Marte added a single to put the score at 2-0. The Mets added a final run in the ninth when Marte was HBP with the bases loaded.

That HBP was not unusual this night, there were six in this contest including a head shot to Pete Alonso that brought the Met bench out to the field, but no scuffle resulted as the Cards wisely remained in their dugout. McNeil and Marte both went 2 for 4 at the plate, and McCann went 3 of 4.

Chris Bassitt hurled 6 innings for the Mets to improve his record to 3-1. Bassitt surrendered only 2 hits, but it seemed there were always Cardinals on base due to his 3 BB and 2 HBP. Edwin Diaz pitched a scoreless ninth to record his third save. Starter Jordan Hicks pitched only two innings for St. Louis before he left in the third due to an injury to his right wrist. He took the loss to drop his record to 1-2.

The Mets improved their record to 14-5, keeping them firmly in first place in the NL East. They will try for the sweep in a day game Wednesday.

6 comments on “Gut Reaction: Mets 3, Cardinals 0 (4/26/22)

  • BoomBoom

    Can we be enthusiastic yet!!!

  • TexasGusCC

    Bassitt was solid and the Mets pitching beat the Cardinals pitching. The Cards pitched well too, and deserved better, but the other team pitched better. Actually, this is the Cardinals way: pitch well, catch the ball, get a timely hit; it’s just that the Mets did it better. Also, that extra run in the ninth was nice. It didn’t really take the wind out the sails of the Cardinals as much as Diaz did, but it probably allowed the Mets to breath a little bit better.

    It feels like Edwin Diaz has matured as a pitcher since he first came to the Mets. The admission the other day that the homerun pitch in Arizona was a bad pitch when watching it on video after believing it was a good pitch when he threw it, is a big departure from previous gopher balls that he felt were “good pitches”, i.e.: Aaron Hicks’ grand slam. If he is now able to self analyze, he will be better at avoiding those types of mistakes.

    I’d like to see Alonso get tomorrow off. He’s pretty pissed and needs a mental day.

  • Metsense

    Gut Reaction: Pitching, Pitching, Pitching wins championships and Bassitt is a very good pitcher. There is no weak link in the rotation.
    Ottavino and Smith got a chance in the semi high leverage situation and performed spotlessly. In 15 games between them only one earned run has been scored.
    McCann had a good day , 3-4. Maybe he will finally contribute some in the future.
    McNeil batting 8th ?!?! Maybe Buck has spread out his “poor” hitters thoughout in order every third group. Marte 1-3 group, Cano 4-6 group and McCann 7-9 group so they’re not bunched up and the opposing pitcher doesn’t have a “break” inning and feels the pressure every inning. It’s unconventional but it is working.
    Another series win against another good opponent. I feel like a sweep is coming!

  • Wobbit

    I’d like to suggest, and perhaps Brian will provide statistical evidence, that McNeil is hitting because he is hitting at the bottom of the order. He tends to strand runners on base more than I like (for a top 5), and hitting 7th or 8th allows him to relax.

    Your theory about Buck’s “groupings” is at least partially true. I think certain guys fit well into certain spots.

    Marte, to me, is clearly a top-three guy.
    He is a dangerous hitter against RH and LH, attacks balls in the zone early, and will eventually generate more offense than Mets are used to.

    McCann does seem a tad rejuvenated. His rip on the second pitch of his last at bat was the best I saw yesterday… fouled it off. He seems liberated and more confident.

    Cano is just done. Very low energy.

    I wish guys advocating for McNeil to rise in the order would look at results. Canha gets on base, and McNeil gets to hit in lower leverage conditions with him on base. Trust Buck! My new bumper sticker…

    • Metsense

      Baseball Reference. com > McNeil> splits, and you can find your answer to your question.

  • Bob P

    I posted this the other day about your comment that McNeil leaves men on base. Here are his stats with runners in scoring position, runners on base and no one on:

    RISP 375/444/563
    Runners on 346/393/500
    No runners 259/355/370

    RISP 280/354/438
    Runners on 313/382/486
    No runners 290/353/439

    Here are his career batting order splits:
    1st .307.370.484 (579 PA)
    2nd .294.347.453 (375)
    3rd .250.322.394 (115)
    4th .000.000.000 (1)
    5th .305.352.366 (88)
    6th .276.350.386 (144)
    7th .312.423.523 (130)
    8th .411.468.607 (62)
    9th .286.348.476 (23)

    About 70% of his career plate appearances have been in the 1 or 2 hole. About half of the plate appearances he’s had in the 3 and 5 hole, where his numbers aren’t as good came last year when he wasn’t right. I’d advocate for moving him up.

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