Final Score: Mets 4, Reds 3
On a night where the Mets got the leadoff man on base in 5 of the first 6 innings but couldn’t find a way to score a run, Yoenis Cespedes reminded us that he’s the spark plug that keeps this offense rolling. After missing three straight games with his balky knee, Yo pinch hit in the bottom of the 7th inning and on the first pitch from starter Brian Finnegan he launched a three-run game-tying laser that just snuck out of the stadium. It would have been off the Great Wall of Flushing at Old Citi Field. But at new Citi it was a goner and it made the game 3-3.
The Reds young lefty Finnegan was really great all game. Until that 7th inning he had only given up a hit and a couple walks. The Mets were 1 for 15 with runners on base in this game. So Finnegan really kept getting himself out of any trouble until the 7th. And as I said in the series preview, the Reds have the worst bullpen ERA in the league. So they left Finnegan in the game because their bullpen is awful. In fact, once Finnegan got pulled and they went to the pen, Curtis Granderson (who’s heating up) hit an opposite field triple. He then scored when David Wright hit a two out single. That made it 4-3 and Addison Reed and Jeurys Familia did the rest for us.
Bartolo Colon tallied his 3000th inning pitched last night. He was mediocre though. He didn’t go 6 innings, and he gave up 8 hits over 5 innings. He was getting smacked around every inning, so I was on board with Terry getting him out of the game when he did. He gave up a two-run homer to Ivan De Jesus Jr. but he was one bad pitch away from doing it again.
Sly Dog Award: The Sly Dog Award goes to Terry Collins for faking out Reds manager Bryan Price. When Brian Finnegan ran into trouble in the 7th inning and Price went to talk to him, Terry sent Duda to the on deck circle. Maybe Price thought Cespedes was unavailable. Maybe Price liked the Duda/Finnegan lefty on lefty matchup. Maybe he just knows his bullpen sucks. Either way Terry’s fakeout worked, and the tired Finnegan stayed in the game to get rocked by Cespedes. Terry you old sandbagging son of a gun.
Wilmer’s Struggling: Wilmer Flores is batting .083. He’s 2 for 24. He made an error at first base last night. We expect nothing in the field from Wilmer, but whether he’s starting or on the bench he must hit. It’s only been a month. It’s only been 24 at-bats. But it won’t be long before people are calling for Matt Reynolds (.288 average in Vegas) to get a chance.
Sample Size Police: So the Mets score all their runs on the home run. I don’t have the exact percentage breakdown, but if we aren’t top 3 in the league in percentage of runs scored via the home run I’d be shocked. Is it too early to conclude that our inability to make simple contact with runners on base or in scoring position is some type of flaw in our offensive design? Will the sample size police arrest me? Home runs are great, but other than Yo’s bomb, we once again struggled to score runs last night despite getting the leadoff men on base a bunch.
With or Without Yo: God the lineup is so different with Cespedes in it. He is electric. It is known. He also bailed postgame without giving any interviews which is super ballin. He just limped to his sports car and sped off. I really hope his injury is healed because the last thing we need is to bring him back too soon and do the setback dance.
Today: Matt Harvey gets another chance to give us a quality start and keep the brooms swinging. We have 5 straight wins and have won 10 of 12. We are creeping up behind the Nats. It’s also April, but winning any time of year is sweet.