Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. A Mets’ starter couldn’t go deep in the game and the bullpen couldn’t hold a lead. A two-run homer in the ninth inning lifted the Diamondbacks to a 5-4 win over the Mets, meaning the teams split the four-game series. It marked the seventh straight home series that the Mets failed to win, a streak that began after the Mets swept the Pirates in mid-April.

There’s plenty of blame to go around in this one. But it seemed a far less than ideal use of the bullpen should be at the top of the list. Part of that was yanking relievers when they could have gone longer and part of that was putting too much emphasis on playing matchups. The game was managed so Jake Diekman would pitch the ninth inning because the D’Backs had two lefties due up.

But they pinch-hit for the first one, with the new hitter starting things off with a double. And then the righty hitter hit the homer., his second of the game. Keith Hernandez pointed out how both homers were pitches at the same level, with the second one just being a bit more over the plate. Time to update the scouting report.

Jose Quintana allowed two homers in the first inning and put the Mets in a 3-0 hole after two innings. And he was yanked after four frames. He now has a 5.17 ERA for the season and it just doesn’t make sense to continue to give him starts. Adrian Houser is now a useful bullpen piece after failing as a SP. Perhaps Quintana can repeat that with a move to the pen.

Dedniel Nunez, a starter and bulk reliever in the minors, was lifted after four outs to get the platoon advantage. Danny Young gets two outs and looks good but is lifted for Reed Garrett. No longer considered for outs in the ninth inning, Garrett’s splitter looks terrific. But he’s lifted after three outs. Adam Ottavino had a 1-2-3 eighth but he’s not a guy you want to use in a multi-inning outing. Which left the choice of the just-activated Drew Smith or Diekman for the ninth. Matchups won out and the Mets lost.

The Citi Field offense managed just five hits in the game but they bunched four of them in one inning. Tyrone Taylor led off the fourth with a double and one out later Luis Torrens got a four-pitch walk. Pete Alonso had an RBI single, Brandon Nimmo tied things up with a two-run triple and J.D. Martinez gave the Mets the lead with an RBI triple.

You know the ball was smoked if Martinez gets a stand-up triple out of it. The Mets came into the game with two triples all season and then hit back-to-back three-baggers.

It could have been enough for a win. But it wasn’t

7 comments on “Gut Reaction: D’Backs 5, Mets 4 (6/2/24)

  • Mike W

    Yeah, this is what we have come to expect. Not surprised. This was the year we were going to punt before going all in next year. The problem as I see it, is that the Mets may have to really overpay next year for free agents. If the Yankees make a plaoff run this year, Soto, may say that, I like the Yankee tradition of winning and I am not really sure where the Mets are going.

  • NYM6986

    0 for June. Yikes. Only 28 days left in the month. Tomorrow is another day. Let’s get those nationals.

  • Metsense

    Gut Reaction: Mendoza has to get the blame. Nunez, 1.1 IP, 3K, Young, 0.2 IP 1K and Garrett 1.0 IP, 3K have been muti-inning relievers but Mendoza didn’t used them as such. He instead blew out his bullpen. Quintana didn’t help either with only 4 IP.
    If they don’t win the series in Washington then the season could be unrecoverable. It’s only the beginning of June!

  • Pal88

    The results are getting redundant. Weak hitting, miserable late inning pitching or coaching staff decisions, whatever they do it just isn’t working. Blow it up now. Get some promising minor leaguers in return. Throw in the towel for 24 and even 25. With a losing history what FA are going to want to sign. And if it’s money it takes to sign someone, move on there not winners.

  • T.J.

    How many Met seasons do we see them fizzle over a lousy multi-week span that essentially ruins the season? The post all-star break swoon has morphed into the May/June swoon. Disappointing to say the least.

    The pen has been awful after a strong start. Did Stearns build a bad pen or did the mediocre 5 inning starting staff, combine with losing his ace and his closer (returning from a major injury) kill the pen? Chicken or egg, but does it even matter.

    The offense has had it’s moments, but it continues to be below average. Arizona opened the series with an unexpected bullpen game, losing it’s starter after 6 pitches. That could not spin that into a series win. While the pen put up 4 scoreless innings to protect the lead until the 9th, the offense was brutal. When the pen finally cracked in the 9th, the offense went down with a whimper for the L.

    Overall, they continue to perform at a league bottom level. It is getting close to irrational to make a case for a path to the playoffs.

    • Brian Joura

      My opinion is that the pen Stearns built has been more or less fine. It’s been the coddling of the SP – along with sending the guys most capable of pitching deep to the minors – that’s been the problem.

  • TexasGusCC

    From SNY tonight:
    “Sunday marked the sixth time the Mets have lost when leading after eight innings since May 1, the most in the majors. No other team has more than two during that time.
    On the season, the bullpen has posted a 3.92 ERA (17th in the MLB) and a 1.35 WHIP (22nd) over 220.1 innings on the year (12th most). But of late, everything seems to be going against them.
    When asked about the struggles in May compared to a good start in April for the relievers, Diekman said that’s just how baseball goes.
    “In the bullpen, you’re gonna pitch 10 times a month, so you’re gonna get 60 games a year. You’re gonna get 10 outings that stink, you’re gonna have 10 outings that are really good and 40 that you have to figure out,” he said. “Lately it might seem like we’re all having the 10 at the same time that aren’t very good.”

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