This series against the Reds was going to be the time for both Dillon Gee and Jonathon Niese to shine; coming off a dominant sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays, it was time to make a statement. Made a statement they did, but not the type Mets fans would have hoped for, and now New York is hoping to salvage the finale today and avoid getting swept themselves.
Mets Offensive Highlights:
New York had plenty of opportunities to get back in the ballgame after they went down early. The squad combined for six hits, with no player registering a multi-hit game. David Wright, Daniel Murphy, and Scott Hairston all doubled, while Ike Davis, Josh Thole, and Lucas Duda all singled. The only run of the game for the Mets came in the bottom of the first inning. Kirk Nieuwenhuisled the frame off with a strikeout, but Murphy followed with a double and stole third while Wright was up. David then drove him in with a line drive double to right field. New York had plenty of chances, but went 2-for-12 with runners on base, leaving 8 men stranded.
Reds Offensive Highlights:
After the first inning, there wasn’t much offense from Cincinnati either, but each starting position player recorded one hit in their eight-hit attack. The biggest blow came right at the beginning of the game, as Niese allowed Zack Cozart and Wilson Valdez to both single to start off the game. After retiring Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips, Jay Bruce made it hurt with a three-run bomb that went into the right field upper deck, giving the Reds a lead they would never relinquish. The fourth run for Cincy came in the top of the fourth, as the inning started with Jay Bruce getting hit by a pitch and a Todd Frazier single. Ryan Ludwick then singled to right to score Bruce and extend the lead to 4-1, the eventual final score.
Outside of the early home run to Bruce, Jonathon Niese did pitch well, but it wasn’t enough, as he dropped to 4-3 on the season. Niese went 7 innings, gave up 6 hits, 1 walk, 4 runs, and 7 strikeouts. Tim Byrdak and Miguel Batista combined to throw the last two innings of the game, not allowing any more runs to cross.
The Mets couldn’t figure out Homer Bailey last night, as he went 8 strong innings, gave up six hits, 1 walk, and 1 run on 3 strikeouts en route to his fifth win of the season. Aroldis Chapman walked one and struck out one in the ninth for his 8th save of the season.
Despite falling to 35-31 on the season with their second straight loss, they’re still 0.5 behind the Braves for second and 4.5 behind the Nationals for first in the NL East since both teams lost last night. Ike Davis once again got a hit, and rose his batting average to .192 on the season. Jason Bay officially hit the 7-day DL with a concussion, and Justin Turner was recalled from Buffalo to take his roster spot. Bay looks to be out for the foreseeable future, alleviating the outfield roster crunch that was looming, although nobody wants to see a player get hurt for that situation to get easier.
Probable Pitchers Sunday:
Chris Young (1-0, 3.38 ERA) is looking to give the Mets a solid start to avoid the sweep at home before they welcome the Orioles in for a three-game set. New York will have a tough task at hand, as Cincinnati will run out Johnny Cueto (7-3, 2.46 ERA) to the mound. First pitch is scheduled for 1:10pm.