Jacob deGrom memories #3: 8 K’s to start the day
This was the moment deGrom locked up the National League Rookie of the Year Award in 2014.
deGrom stepped onto the mound with his full five-pitch arsenal and excellent command at his disposal. The Marlins looked uncomfortable in the batter's box from the start. In the first inning, he beat Cristian Yelich and Donovan Solano with fastballs on the inner third (keep in mind, these were the days when he was primarily a sinker-baller who averaged 93 and topped out at 96) and then got Jake McGee looking at a back-door sinker for a called third strike.
He started the second inning the same way, nailing the outside corner with a sinker to catch Marcell Ozuna looking. He then got Justin Bour and Adeiny Hechavarria swinging on fastballs up and out of the zone. This tied the Mets’ team record for strikeouts to start a game.
He started the third inning by freezing former-Met Jordany Valdespin with a slider low and in to set a new Mets record for strikeouts to start a game. He then froze Jeff Mathais with a back-door sinker for the eighth consecutive strikeout, tying the Major League record to start a game.
Unfortunately, the next batter, Marlins starter Jarred Cosart, hit a single to break the streak. deGrom would go on to strike out 13 batters over seven innings, and in classic Mets fashion, the bullpen would blow the lead and the Mets would lose the game.