Mets Series Review Black Out and Series Wins
The New York Mets continued their torrid start, taking two of three against the Philadelphia Phillies. They began a seven-game homestand against the top rivals in the National League East. On Friday, the Mets made history with the second No-Hitter in team history, using five pitchers. Kyle Schwarber remained a thorn in the Mets' side, as he hit three home runs over the weekend, including two against Max Scherzer. When the weekend was over, the Mets had a three-game lead in the East, holding a 16-7 record, as they had one of the best Aprils in franchise history.
The Mets wore the black uniforms for the first time on Friday. They will wear the black jerseys on every Friday home game this season. The black uniforms returned last year after popular demand from the fans. Tylor Megill took the mound for the opener and was effectively wild. Megill walked three batters, including Schwarber twice. That would be the only way the Phillies reached base, as the Mets were on their way to a magical night. In the fifth inning, the Mets got two runs on the board, as Mark Canha doubled while Jeff McNeil had a two-run single.
Tylor Megill had a high pitch count and left the game after five innings with the lead. He had four strikeouts as Drew Smith took over. Smith allowed a walk and struck out four Phillies as the Mets added to their lead with a home run from Pete Alonso in the sixth inning. Joely Rodriguez came on to face Kyle Schwarber with one out in the seventh and issued a walk before getting Alec Bohm to hit into a double play.
The Mets were up 3-0, as the buzz at Citi Field was felt all the way to the parking garage in Newark, where I was watching on my phone following the Devils game. Rodriguez was still on the mound in the eighth and retired Didi Gregorius before walking pinch hitter Johan Camargo. Seth Lugo came in and got the next two hitters to pop up as fans began to feel that history was in the making.
The trumpets played as Edwin Diaz came on to pitch in the ninth inning, the Mets winning 3-0, the Phillies with no hits. It took the Mets 50 years to throw their first No-Hitter in 2012. On May 31st, the Mets will commemorate the John Santana No-Hitter, but Diaz had a chance to finish the Mets' second No-Hitter as he took the mound. At times, Edwin Diaz has faltered in big spots, but on this night, the trumpets were blaring as Diaz struck out the side, in his most dominant performance since joining the Mets.
A No-Hitter had been thrown, and it did not matter that it took five pitchers; the historical moment will never be forgotten, as SNY will throw this game into the rotation of games shown over the winter and when there are rainouts for the next decade. The five Mets pitchers had 12 strikeouts and issued six walks, three to Kyle Schwarber, who did not get an official at-bat.
On Saturday night, Taijuan Walker took the mound, returning from bursitis in his shoulder. Walker pitched well, allowing two hits and two walks while blanking the Phillies for five innings. The Mets scratched out a run in the fifth inning but could not add to the lead as Jose Alvarado struck out Eduardo Escobar and Mark Canha with the bases loaded.
Trevor May allowed one hit in the sixth, as Adam Ottavino pitched in the seventh. Ottavino turned into "out the lead go" as he gave up a two-run home run to Kyle Schwarber. Ottavino gave up a third run before he was relieved by Sean Reid-Foley. Reid-Foley gave up a home run in the eighth and left the game clutching his elbow. The Mets had a chance to get back in the game in the eighth, but Brandon Nimmo grounded to second with the bases loaded, as Philadelphia won the game 4-1.
The Mets made their first appearance on Sunday Night Baseball with Max Scherzer on the mound, looking for the series win. Kyle Schrwarber hit a solo homer in the second inning to give the Phillies a brief lead. The Mets answered with two runs in the bottom of the inning as Dom Smith and Luis Guillorme each had critical hits with their roster spots in question. The Phillies regain the lead with Schwarber hitting his second home run of the game. Kyle Schwarber has hit 13 home runs in his last 11 games against the Mets, establishing an MLB record. The Mets quickly tied the game 3-3 as Dom Smith doubled in the bottom of the fourth.
The Mets loaded the bases in the fifth and took the lead on a passed ball. Dom Smith followed with a two-run single, making it 6-3. Bryce Harper homered in the sixth to cut into the Mets' lead. Max Scherzer was prone to the longball on Sunday, giving up three home runs, with five hits and nine strikeouts as he left after six innings with a 6-4 lead.
After a strong seventh from Joely Rodriguez, the Mets padded their lead with three runs in the seventh inning. The Mets got timely hitting all night and scored ten runs without hitting a home run. This is the type of winning baseball that is constant and has not been seen in Flushing for many years. Dom Smith had four hits and three RBI; Starling Marte also drove in three as the Mets won the game 10-6, with Yoan Lopez allowing a two-run homer to Johan Camargo.
Monday was decision day for the Mets, as the rosters had to be reduced from 28 to 26 in MLB. Sean Reid-Foley made the first part of the decision easy, as he had a torn UCL and could need Tommy John surgery. Reid-Foley does not have options and would have to clear waivers to go down to Syracuse. The second spot was not easy. Luis Guillorme and Dom Smith had options but were valuable to the Mets this season, and both had critical hits on Sunday. Travis Jankowski, without options and likely to be claimed, has also been valuable. This left Robinson Cano, a 39-year-old with $40 million left on his contract, coming off a steroids suspension. Cano has not had many competitive at-bats; he is their weakest fielder and their worst hitter, but with a hearty contract came the hard pill to swallow. The Mets did the right thing, eating the final two years on Cano's deal by designating him for assignment.