Mets: On the back of Zack Wheeler, we saw how promising 2019 can be
By Tim Boyle
The New York Mets ended their losing streak with a 3-0 shutout thanks to a stellar outing by Zack Wheeler. In doing so, we saw a glimpse at a better future.
This Saturday night was much different from last week’s game between the New York Mets and Pittsburgh Pirates. Last week, yet another Jacob deGrom gem went wasted.
This week, starting pitcher Zack Wheeler had a little more in his tank and some support from the offense.
The Mets didn’t crack the game versus the Atlanta Braves wide open at any point. With the way Wheeler pitched, they didn’t need to.
Wheeler gave his team seven strong innings. Braves batters struck out 9 times and only mustered a trio of hits. The dominant start by Wheeler is yet another memorable performance by the righty. It’s looking more and more like the Mets made the right decision not to trade him in July.
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Deeper than Wheeler, we saw how good 2019 can be. Wheeler was far from the only player to perform well. Most notably, rookie Jeff McNeil showed up.
This was a breakout game for McNeil. In four plate appearances, the rookie infielder picked up four hits including a double. Though he didn’t score a run or contribute with an RBI, he set the Mets up nicely for the bottom of the lineup to drive in Todd Frazier twice and Michael Conforto on a separate occasion.
The Mets bullpen also pitched well in this one. Bobby Wahl escaped a jam he worked his way into. With two men on, Wahl struck out Ronald Acuna Jr.
Robert Gsellman would finish off the eighth inning before returning for the final frame. Three groundballs to McNeil later from the three through five hitters on Atlanta and the game was over.
The 3-0 victory for the Mets helped end an otherwise miserable week. It started with the 25-4 beating from the Washington Nationals on Monday and continued through Friday when deGrom pitched another great game only to come away with the loss.
Thanks to Wheeler, McNeil, and a few clutch performances from others, we saw a brief glimpse at a bright future in Queens.
It has been said that Wheeler has “turned a corner.” In this game, he exited the building and locked the door behind him.
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I understand it’s just one game. However, consistent play like this shows there is life left in some of the team.