In Game 2 of today/tonight’s frigid doubleheader at Coors Field, the Mets handed the Rockies the victory and a doubleheader sweep.
Apr 13, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Mets shortstopRuben Tejada
(11) throws the ball to first base to get out Minnesota Twins first basemanJustin Morneau
(not pictured) in the fourth inning at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports
Aaron Laffey picked up right where he left off in his last start, hurling slop in the general vicinity of the plate while allowing the Rockies to take a 1-0 lead in the first inning. The Mets evened things up at 1 in the top of the second when Ruben Tejada blooped a single down the right field line.
After a perfect bunt by Collin Cowgill and a double by Daniel Murphy to open the third, the Mets took the lead when Yorvit Torrealba made a snap throw to third base in an attempt to pick off Cowgill. The throw sailed into left field allowing Cowgill to score and Murphy to move to third. That made it 2-1 Mets. After David Wright walked, Marlon Byrd lifted a sacrifice fly to center to increase the lead to 3-1. The Rockies got a run back in the bottom of the frame. Aaron Laffey walked Josh Rutledge before allowing a single to Carlos Gonzalez (with Rutledge going to third on the play). Michael Cuddyer then drove in Rutledge with an RBI groundout to whittle the lead to 3-2 Mets.
The Mets got to Jeff Francis again in the fifth. With Daniel Murphy on third and David Wright on second after a wild pitch, Marlon Byrd singled softly to right field to plate them both and stretch the Mets’ lead to 5-2. After Lucas Duda walked, Justin Turner, Ruben Tejada, and Jordany Valdespin all delivered RBI singles as the Mets’ lead ballooned to 8-2.
Josh Edgin came in for the fifth and gave up an infield hit, a soft double, and back to back walks to allow the Rockies to draw within 8-3. He was then replaced by LaTroy Hawkins, who allowed a sacrifice fly. Hawkins appeared to be out of the inning after inducing a fly ball to left from Yorvit Torrealba. However, Mike Baxter badly misplayed the ball, turning a sure out into a 2 run double. That made it 8-6, drawing the Rockies closer.
The Mets literally handed the Rockies two runs in the eighth. After recording the first two outs, Brandon Lyon made an error on a comebacker that would’ve ended the inning. After Scott Rice gave up a hit to Carlos Gonzalez past the vacated third base position, Bobby Parnell was summoned for a four out save. He had the Mets out of the inning after inducing a grounder from Michael Cuddyer, but Ruben Tejada threw away what would’ve been the third out, allowing the tying runs to score and make it 8-8.
After his horrendous error, Tejada had a chance to redeem himself in the ninth with runners on first and third and two outs. Instead, he flew out to center field.
In the tenth, the Mets had another chance to take the lead back, but David Wright flew out to right with runners on first and second.
Keeping with the theme of the night, David Wright botched a grounder off the bat of Michael Cuddyer with two outs in the tenth that allowed the inning to continue. After the botched play at third, Jordan Pacheco lined a single to right field to drive in Carlos Gonzalez and give the Rockies the win.
- Aaron Laffey struggled during his four innings of work. He threw 77 pitches while allowing two runs on four hits. He walked three and struck out three.
- Lucas Duda left the game in the bottom of the fifth inning with tightness in his lower back.
- Josh Edgin replaced Laffey in the fifth and was ineffective. He gave up two hits and walked two before being removed. He was charged with four runs
- Scott Atchison tossed a perfect frame in the sixth, and worked out of a bases loaded jam in the seventh by striking out Troy Tulowitzki.
- Brandon Lyon allowed the eighth inning to continue by flubbing a grounder that would’ve been the third out. That paved the way for Ruben Tejada‘s almost impossible to believe throwing error that allowed the tying runs to score after Bobby Parnell induced what should’ve been the third out of the inning.
Tonight’s loss was absolutely brutal, and the blame rests squarely on the shoulders of Mike Baxter, Brandon Lyon, and Ruben Tejada. Each of them made a terrible play that allowed the Rockies to tie a game they were being blown out of. Baxter misplayed a fly ball that should’ve been the third out of the fifth inning, turning what should’ve been the third out into a 2 run double. In the eighth, Lyon made an error on a comebacker that would’ve ended the inning. With all that, the Mets should’ve been heading to the ninth with at least a 2 run lead, but Ruben Tejada threw away a routine grounder off the bat of Michael Cuddyer that allowed the Rockies to score 2 runs and tie the game at 8.
Aaron Laffey, who has both below average stuff and below average control, is simply not a major league caliber pitcher at this point in his career. With Shaun Marcum nearing a return from the disabled list and Collin McHugh available in AAA, tonight should’ve been the last time Laffey toes the slab for the Mets. However, there are those who are surmising that Laffey was removed early tonight in order to save him for a potential start Saturday against Washington on three days rest.
Ruben Tejada is a disaster right now at shortstop. His error in the eighth that allowed the tying runs to score on what should’ve been the third out was one of the worst errors I’ve ever seen. It was a routine grounder that he threw five feet wide to first base with a slow runner coming. Tejada’s horrendous defense at shortstop is almost indescribable at this point.
The Mets and Rockies are scheduled to play tomorrow night at 8:40. However, the forecast calls for snow throughout the day and night. Even if the snow doesn’t materialize or tapers off early, the temperature is expected to be 26 degrees at game time. If the game is postponed, there would likely be another doubleheader on Thursday. Two doubleheaders in three days is ridiculous, but that’s the gift the schedule makers have likely given the Mets and the Rockies.