Friday evening, the Mets opened an Independence Day weekend series at Citi Field against the American League’s Texas Rangers. Both teams entered the game with identical 37-48 records.
Jon Niese climbed the hill for the home team, and was opposed by the Rangers Yu Darvish. Jon Niese‘s night however would end shortly after commencing. While facing only his third batter of the game, he took a come-backer (seemingly to the rib cage) that precipitated his removal by Terry Collins.
After surrendering a 3-1 1st inning lead, the Mets broke a 4-4 tie in the 8th with a pair of runs driven in by Travis d’Arnaud.
Jenrry Mejia pitched the 9th and despite surrendering a run, still managed to close out a 6-5 Mets victory, and help snap the team’s 4 game slide.
Mets Starting Lineup:
1) Eric Young Jr – LF; 2) Curtis Granderson – CF; 3) Daniel Murphy – 2B; 4) Bobby Abreu – RF; 5) Lucas Duda – 1B; 6) Eric Campbell – 3B; 7) Travis d’Arnaud – C; 8) Ruben Tejada – SS; 9) Jon Niese – SP.
Jon Niese‘s first pitch of the evening to lead-off batter Shin-Soo Choo was a fastball high and inside for ball one. Choo then sent Jon Niese’s third offering of the game over the right field wall for a home run. Just 9 pitches later, Jon Niese was removed from the game after taking a line drive off the bat of right fielder Alex Rios into what appeared to be his rib cage. Carlos Torres entered in relief of Niese and retired the side.
Yu Darvish‘s first pitch of the evening was a ball, inside to Eric Young. With Young retired, Curtis Granderson doubled to deep right/center. Batting third, Daniel Murphy struck out swinging. With two outs and a runner still in scoring position, Bobby Abreu singled up the middle to deliver Granderson with the game’s tying run. Lucas Duda then stepped in and lofted a fly to deep left field. The ball bounced off the railing above the orange line, but was originally ruled in play for a stand-up double. Then upon further review, the ball was ruled a home run.
With Carlos Torres facing the top of the Rangers order, a walk and 2 straight singles cut the Mets lead to 3-2 in the top of the 3rd inning.
Through 3 full innings, Yu Darvish struck out 5 Mets batters. Through his 3 innings, Carlos Torres allowed 3 hits, walked one and fanned 3 batters. He threw 55 pitches with 38 (69%) going for strikes.
With two outs in the top of the 4th, pitcher Yu Darvish connected on only his second ever MLB hit – a one-bounce double off the left/center field wall.
In the bottom of the 4th, Lucas Duda led off by drawing a walk. With the runner in motion, Eric Campbell then pulled a double down the left field line. Duda scored to make it a 4-2 game. Travis d’Arnaud then drew Darvish’s second walk of the inning. Carlos Torres took his turn at bat, and executed a successful bunt to put runners on second and third. But with two outs, Eric Young left them stranded with a bounce-back to the pitcher.
With two outs in the top of the 5th, Adrian Beltre crushed a Carlos Torres offering to straight away center field, making it a 4-3 game. The Mets went down in order in the bottom of the frame.
Vic Black entered the game in the 6th in relief of Carlos Torres.
A well executed lead off bunt single in the 6th by second baseman Rougned Odor was negated when he was picked off first base, scored 1-3-6-4-3-6. Then with two outs and a runner on first, Black walked pinch hitter Carlos Pena to put the tying run in scoring position. Shin-Soo Choo followed, and looked at a curveball for strike three from Black to end the threat.
Neftali Feliz entered the game in the bottom of the 6th inning in relief of Yu Darvish, and promptly issued back to back walks to Lucas Duda and Eric Campbell. Travis d’Arnaud‘s attempted bunt then forced Duda at third for the first out. Ruben Tejada followed with a shallow fly to right. With two outs, Kirk Nieuwenhuis pinch hit for Vic Black and struck out swinging.
Reliever Jeurys Familia entered the game in the 7th inning. Leading off for Texas, Elvis Andrus reached safely when Daniel Murphy made a nice backhanded play but was charged with a throwing error to first. Andrus moved to second on Alex Rios‘ 5-3 putout. Clean-up hitter Adrian Beltre then bounced to third for an infield hit that put runners on the corners. Chris Gimenez followed with a bouncer to third, but Eric Campbell booted a chance for a double play. He recovered in time to get the out at first, but the tying run (unearned) scored on the play.
In the 8th, Jeurys Familia issued a 2-out walk to Sin-Soo Choo. Elvis Andrus then flared a ball just beyond the reach of Daniel Murphy to put runners on the corners. Jenrry Mejia then came into the game in relief of Familia as part of a double switch along with Chris Young who took over left field. Texas failed to score.
Reliever Aaron Poreda entered the game for Texas in the bottom of the 8th and promptly walked Bobby Abreu. Next up, Lucas Duda looked at strike three for the first out. Coach Washington then made another pitching change in favor of Jason Frasor, who allowed a single to Eric Campbell. Travis d’Arnaud then delivered a two run double to the right/center gap, giving the Mets a 6-4 lead.
Jenrry Mejia surrendered a run in the 9th, but still closed out a 6-5 victory over the Rangers.
- Top 1st inning - Shin-Soo Choo led off the game with a home run to right field.
- Bottom 1st inning – Curtis Granderson reached on a one out double. Bobby Abreu‘s single scored Granderson. Lucas Duda hit a 2-run home run to left field for a 3-1 Mets lead.
- Top 3rd inning – Shin-Soo Choo led off with a walk and advanced to third base on Elvis Andrus‘ base hit. Alex Rios then followed with another single to score Choo and make it a 3-2 game.
- Bottom 4th inning – Lucas Duda led off with a walk. With the runner in motion, Eric Campbell pulled a double down the left field line to score Duda all the way from first base.
- Top 5th inning – Adrian Beltre‘s home run to center field off Carlos Torres cut the Mets lead to 4-3.
- Top 7th inning - Helped by an E-4 charged to Daniel Murphy, Texas put runners on first and third with one out against reliever Jeurys Familia. Chris Gimenez‘s grounder to third was booted by Eric Campbell, allowing the tying run to score.
- Bottom 8th inning – Bobby Abreu drew a lead off walk. Eric Campbell singled. Travis d’Arnaud doubled deep to right/center plating both runners for a 6-4 Mets lead.
- Top 9th inning – Pinch hitter Leonys Martin walked, and advanced to second on a passed ball. First baseman Adam Rosales singled to score Martin.
- Final Score: Rangers 5; Mets 6
- This was the first of a 10 game home stand to close out the first half of the season.
- Jon Niese was clearly displeased with the decision to remove him for precautionary reasons in the first inning. He was viewed slamming his glove into the bench and continuing to storm through the dugout following the shortest outing of his career. X-rays were reported to be negative.
- Daniel Murphy entered the game leading the National League with 104 hits.
- The Mets continue to resemble the Keystone Cops when executing run down plays. See the 6th inning.
- Eric Campbell – 3 for 3, walk, RBI, run scored.
- Lucas Duda – 13th home run of season.
- Happy Birthday America!
7/5 Saturday, 7:15pm – Rangers @ METS