Back from completing their final road trip, the Mets were in Citi Field Friday evening to open their regular season finale against their old National League expansion brothers, the Houston Astros. Because the Astros switched to the junior circuit last season, this is now an inter-league contest.
Curtis Granderson opened the scoring with a long home run in the 4th.
Sep 26, 2014; New York, NY, USA; New York Mets managerTerry Collins
(10) examines starting pitcher Jonathon Niese (49) and removes him from a game against the Houston Astros during the sixth inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Niese cruised through his first 5 innings of work, allowing no runs and just 2 hits. However, with 1-out in the 6th, Jon Niese removed himself from a gem performance upon experiencing an elevated heart rate (an issue he’s dealt with in the past).
The game then changed on a dime. Carlos Torres entered in relief of Niese, and promptly surrendered 3 runs.
The Mets line-up was effectively shut down after Grandy’s knock. In relief of Brad Peacock, Houston’s bullpen allowed just 1 hit over 4.1 scoreless innings pitched to secure the victory, and retired 11 straight Mets to end the game.
Starter Brad Peacock threw 96 pitches, and was gassed after just 4.2 innings of work, but limited the Mets to 4 scattered hits and fanned 7 before departing.
Carlos Torres was credited with the loss.
The Mets record fell to 77-83 with 2 games left in the regular season.
Mets Starting Lineup:
Jon Niese’s first pitch of the evening to Houston lead-off batter Robbie Grossman was a fastball taken high for ball one. Niese fanned Grossman on 5 pitches, and retired the side in order.
Brad Peacock’s first pitch of the game to Mets lead-off batter Eric Young was a fastball taken for strike one. Peacock then likewise retired the Mets in order.
Leading off the top of the 2nd, center fielder Dexter Fowler reached with the Astros’ first hit of the game. With 2-outs, Fowler was apparently thrown out by Anthony Recker attempting to steal second. Upon further review Wilmer Flores‘ tag attempt failed to make contact and Fowler was ruled safe, but was left stranded.
With 2-out in the bottom of the 2nd, Matt den Dekker laced the Mets first base hit to center, and then stole second.
- Jon Niese sailed through the first 3 innings. He allowed just 1 hit, no walks, and struck out 4. He threw 45 pitches with 31 (69%) going for strikes.
With 2-outs in the bottom of the 3rd, the Mets managed two base runners. But, Daniel Murphy left them stranded on Peacock’s forth strikeout of the game.
With 1-out in the bottom of the 4th, Curtis Granderson hit a booming home run over the right/center fence to give the Mets a 1-0 lead.
Jon Niese was cruising entering the 6th inning, when suddenly he excused himself from the game due to an elevated heart rate.
- In his 30th and final start of the season, Niese pitched 5.1 scoreless innings, allowed 3 hits, no walks, and fanned 4 batters. He threw 66 pitches with 44 (67%) going for strikes. Jon lowered his ERA from 3.50 to a 3.40 mark.
Carlos Torres entered the game in relief, and suffered through an awful inning in which he allowed 4 hits (3 consecutively), hit a batter, and was victimized by an E-2 (Recker) en route to surrendering 3 runs.
Reliever Erik Goeddel took over for Carlos Torres in the 8th, and pitched 2 scoreless innings.
The Mets went down quietly against Chad Qualls in the bottom of the 9th.
- Bottom 4th inning – With 1-out, Curtis Granderson homered.
- Top 6th inning – With 1-out and Carlos Torres pitching, Robbie Grossman doubled. Jose Altuve singled to score Grossman. First baseman Chris Carter then doubled; Altuve scored on an E-2 at the plate. Matt Dominguez‘ single scored Carter to give Houston a 3-1 lead.
- Final Score: Astros 3; METS 1
- Jon Niese reached 30 starts for the 3rd time in his career. In 187.2 innings pitched this season, he allowed 193 hits, walked 45, and fanned 138 batters. He wraps up the season with a 9-11 record, a 3.40 ERA (matches career best; 2012), a 1.27 WHiP, and a .268 BAA. In many respects, this rates as Jon Niese’s second best season. After the game, Jon Niese said he does not take medication for his heart condition.
- At .292, Daniel Murphy entered the game 10th in the league in batting. He went 0 for 4 (.290).
- Curtis Granderson reached 20 home runs for the 7th time in his career. Last season he was limited to 61 games and 7 home runs due to injury. Otherwise, 20 home runs is presently his lowest total since hitting 19 back in 2006. He needs 2 home runs in the final 2 games in order to match 2008.
9/27 – Saturday, 7:10pm; Astros @ METS
Samuel Deduno (2-6) vs. Rafael Montero (1-3)