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Astros launch Mets into the sky, pitching staff gets shelled in an ugly loss
Trevor Williams and Chasen Shreve combined to allow seven runs on Tuesday
What’s Up with the Mets? ⚾
The Mets lost to the Astros by a score of 8-2 on Tuesday night in Houston (Box)
RHP Trevor Williams started for the Mets and allowed three runs - all of which in the third inning - thanks in part to homers from José Altuve and Yordan Álvarez
LHP Chasen Shreve allowed the game to get out of hand when he allowed a bases-clearing double to Kyle Tucker in the fifth
Pete Alonso hit a solo home run, singled twice and walked
JD Davis struck out three times and stranded four runners in a rough night at the plate
RHP Max Scherzer (strained oblique) struck out six and allowed two runs over 3.1 IP for Double-A Binghamton on Tuesday - he could be activated for a start against the Marlins in Miami on Sunday
C James McCann (hand surgery) went 1-for-4 with a double and caught Scherzer’s rehab start for Double-A Binghamton - he could be activated by this weekend
RHP Jacob deGrom (stress reaction in scapula) faced live hitters in Port St. Lucie for the first time since being shutdown in March
INF Jeff McNeil underwent an MRI on his hamstring, and the results were unremarkable - he remains day-to-day
Who’s Hot 🔥
Pete Alonso is hitting .308/.418/.692 with nine home runs and 24 RBI over his last 23 games - he now has 20 home runs and 65 RBI through the first 70 games of the season
Luis Guillorme is hitting .412/.412/.412 during his five-game hitting streak
Today’s Game 🗓
Match-up: Mets (45-25) vs Astros (42-25)
Where: Minute Maid Park — Houston, Texas
Starters: RHP Carlos Carrasco (8-2, 3.96 ERA) vs RHP Luis García (4-5, 3.41 ERA)
When: 2:10 PM EDT
Where to Watch: SNY
Max Scherzer couldn’t return soon enough 📝
The best thing to come out of Tuesday was that Max Scherzer declared himself ready to return to the big leagues after his encouraging start for Double-A Binghamton.
His return couldn’t come soon enough.
Of course, he cautioned he has to see how his body responds to his outing, but he offered a most refreshing and reassuring performance in an otherwise lost day for the Mets, on the big league diamond anyway.
Trevor Williams started out alright but there’s only so long he could keep the Astros on the launch pad in Houston on Tuesday night. He allowed three runs in the third inning thanks to a solo home run from José Altuve and a two-run shot from Yordan Álvarez (he reminds me a lot of Carlos Delgado at the plate, for whatever that’s worth). That more or less served as a bus ticket for the Mets back to the team hotel, especially after LHP Chasen Shreve came in to relieve Williams in the fifth inning and allowed a four-spot, the low light of the inning coming in the form of a bases-clearing double against lefty Kyle Tucker - you know, the guy Shreve is supposed to retire since he is, well, left-handed.
That made the score 7-0 - that was more or less that although Pete Alonso put on a light show with his bat, homering off the Lexus sign in left field and smacking a couple of more hits in a 3-for-3 night.
But back to Williams for a moment, if I may…
He has done an admirable job as this club’s swing man over the course of the season. He has been in and out of the Mets bullpen, in and out of their rotation, and done pretty much everything he has been asked to do.
But even the Mets know its never a formula for success when one rotation spot is a complete wild card every fifth day and they can’t get a lot of innings from that rotation spot at that. And for Williams specifically, he has proven to be more valuable out of the bullpen - he has a 2.30 ERA in seven relief appearances, compared to a 4.88 ERA in six starts in 2022.
But that brings me back to Scherzer, who is now on course to make his long-awaited and much-needed return against the Marlins this coming Sunday. How far he will be able to go over his first couple of starts back remains to be seen of course but just his presence alone will restore credibility to what has become a fragmented starting rotation which has simply lacked bodies at times over the last five weeks.
Can Sunday be tomorrow?
Look - we knew there were only so many turns through the rotation the Mets could endure without Scherzer, Jacob deGrom and to an extent Tylor Megill before it became over-exposed. And against top shelf opponents like the Astros, it’s hard to go into these contests without a full deck of cards.
And yes, the likes of Taijuan Walker, Carlos Carrasco and lately Chris Bassitt have at least pitched to the back of their respective baseball cards and delivered in their own way. But it’s hard to be without their two horses for very long.
In a way, it’s amazing the Mets found a way to survive with a combined eight starts from Scherzer and deGrom and literally running out of pitchers to pitch baseball games at times over the last five weeks. They’ve gone 20-11 since Scherzer left his start against the Cardinals with a strained oblique.
Still, the timing couldn’t be better for Scherzer to be re-injected into the starting rotation. His presence will likely send Williams back into that swing man role, something he can excel in and in-turn, will deepen the Mets bullpen and help limit the exposure of that part of the roster.
And of course, it’s Max Scherzer - there’s no replacing him.
Down on the Farm 🌾
Francisco Álvarez (C, No. 1 prospect, Double-A): 2-for-4, HR, 3 RBI
Ender Inciarte (OF, Triple-A): 1-for-4, 2B
Dominic Hamel (RHP, No. 9 prospect, Low-A): 6.2 IP, 2 ER, 6 H, 7 K
Around the League 🚩
Shohei Ohtani homered twice and drove in eight runs, but the Angels fell to the Royals 12-11 in Anaheim
The Giants edged the Braves in a wild 12-10 win in Atlanta
The Rangers shutout the Phillies 7-0 in Arlington
INF Isaac Paredes hit three home runs in the Rays 5-4 win over the Yankees
The Rays did lose two outfielders to the injured list - Manuel Margot and Kevin Kiermaier
The Guardians earned a share of first place in the NL Central with a thrilling 6-5 win over the Twins at Target Field
The Marlins signed speedster Billy Hamilton to a minor league contract