Jacob deGrom shelled, Mets get clubbed by the A's as the division lead shrinks to 1.5 games
Jacob deGrom endured his worst start since May 17, 2019
What’s Up with the Mets? ⚾
The Mets got whipped by the A’s 10-4 on Saturday afternoon at the Oakland Coliseum (box)
The Mets jumped out to early 3-0 lead on the A’s thanks to a sac fly from Francisco Lindor - his 100th RBI - and a two-run home run from Pete Alonso, but that was quickly erased in the bottom of the first when the A’s jumped on Jacob deGrom for four runs
Mark Vientos hit his first big league home run which briefly tied this game at 4-4 in the top of the second, but that was the end for the Mets offense as deGrom and the bullpen allowed six unanswered runs the rest of the way
deGrom was knocked out after four inning after allowed five runs, six hits and four walks for his third loss of the season. His MLB-record streak of 40 straight starts of allowing three runs or fewer ended, which dated back to September 3, 2019.
The Mets bullpen allowed five runs over the final five innings of the game - Trevor Williams allowed a run in one inning, Joely Rodriguez allowed one run over 0.2 IP, Adam Ottavino allowed a run over one inning, and Trevor May allowed two runs over one inning
The Mets lost for the second time in three games on this road trip, although they’ve still won seven of their last ten games overall
Who’s Hot 🔥
Pete Alonso has a .953 OPS over his last seven games with six home runs and 17 RBI during that span
Francisco Lindor has a ten-game hitting streak. He is hitting .326/.333/.535 with a double, triple, two home runs and eight RBI during that span
The Pennant Race 🏁
The Mets have clinched a postseason berth (9/19)
NL East lead: 1️⃣.5️⃣ games
Magic Number to win NL East: 9️⃣
Win pace: 1️⃣0️⃣1️⃣
Playoff odds (Fangraphs):
Win the National League East: 79.5 percent ⬇️
Clinch a first round bye: 79.5 percent ⬇️
Win the World Series: 17.5 percent ⬆️
Today’s Game 🗓
Match-up: Mets (96-57) at Athletics (56-96)
Where: Oakland Coliseum — Oakland, CA
Starters: RHP Max Scherzer (10-4, 2.15 ERA) vs. LHP JP Sears (6-2, 3.58 ERA)
When: 4:07 PM EDT
Where to Watch: WPIX, MLB Network
Deep breath, new day for the Mets… 📝
“I was terrible,” Jacob deGrom concluded after Saturday’s loss to the A’s.
Yeah, pretty much unfortunately. It was rather surprising too. After all, it’s Jacob deGrom and, well, when was the last time that happened to him?
May 17, 2019 to be exact, when he allowed seven runs - six earned - over five innings to the Marlins.
That’s how awesome deGrom has been. It’s been 3 1/2 years since his last ineffective start.
Even so, it couldn’t come at a worse time for deGrom and the Mets, who are in Oakland facing the lowly A’s just after they expanded their lead to 2.5 games in the National League East.
What’s more, the Mets gave deGrom a 3-0 cushion before he even took the mound at the Coliseum on Saturday afternoon. Out of the gate, it seemed like the Mets were well on their way to taking care of business and at least holding serve on their lead in the National League East.
But not on this day. That lead evaporated before anyone could say, “deGrom looks a little off so far today.”
“We had our guys go out and put up three runs and I go give up four right away, lose the lead, that’s on me,” deGrom explained at his locker after the game. I was really bad.”
Simply put, deGrom got shelled in those first two innings. His mechanics were obviously a little off, he had no command of his fastball and he became dependent on his slider, which also lacked that crispness and location down and away from the right-handed hitter.
The Mets did respond with a run in the second thanks to Mark Vientos’ first career home run. And if there’s any consolation to this game it was just that, as the Mets need to find some kind of presence from the right side among their various DH options. Vientos has had a good couple of days and things seem to be slowing down for him a bit at the plate, and the results are starting to show.
But from there, the Mets had absolutely nothing to respond with at the plate, which has happened a lot over the last month when they’ve been knocked on their asses early in games. They had two baserunners erased on double plays in the third and fourth innings, stranded Luis Guillorme after a one-out single in the seventh, stranded Jeff McNeil and Francisco Lindor after they tried to mount a threat in the eighth, and stranded Vientos and Daniel Vogelbach in the ninth (to be fair, McNeil hit into some very tough luck to end the game, but still…)
Look, this game is squarely on deGrom simply having a bad day for the first time in forever. He knows it - he owned the whole thing after the game and didn’t dance around what had happened to him. It happens, even to the best on occasion. It would’ve been better if this had happened earlier in the season or on a day the Braves didn’t happen to win and close the gap in the division again, but I’m sure the Braves are kicking themselves for their performance over the three prior days themselves.
I just continue to worry about the offense, though. Yes, they have Alonso and Lindor going again and where they go, the offense follows. And yes, they did score four runs yesterday and they are 82-7 when they score four or more runs in a game this year.
But while I don’t expect them to win when the pitching gets crushed for ten runs, it was those innings where they sprinkled a baserunner here or there and then grounded into double plays which concern me and have concerned me since the All-Star Break. Maybe it’s just the frustration that comes with a drubbing like this or whatever, but that’s what was running through my head as they let opportunities to tie or get closer slip away, and the A’s just seemed to topple over them with each passing inning as punishment for missing those opportunities.
Upward and onward though. The Mets still have a chance to win this series, come home with a 4-2 road trip and and at least open play on Tuesday against the Marlins knowing they’ll have a full game lead over Atlanta at a minimum. Maybe they’ll get a little help from the Phillies today who are now in a must-win situation themselves as they look to continue hold off the suddenly-hot Brewers in the wild card race.
Deep breath, new day for the Mets. Just take care of business.
Down on the Farm 🌾
Gosuke Katoh (1B, Triple-A): 2-for-5, HR, 3 RBI
Francisco Álvarez (C, No. 1 Prospect, Triple-A): 1-for-3, 2 BB
Box Scores: Triple-A
Around the League 🚩
The Braves ended their three-game losing streak with a 6-2 win over the Phillies - they closed to within 1.5 games of the Mets in the National League East
The Astros scored a run in the eighth and four runs in the ninth to sneak past the Orioles 11-10 for their 100th win of the season
The Guardians lowered their magic number to clinch the American League Central to one with a 4-2 win over the Rangers behind Cal Quantrill’s 14th win of the season
Luis Castillo agreed to a five-year, $108 million contract extension with the Mariners, who expanded their lead to four games for the third Wild Card spot with a 6-5 win over the Royals
The Padres took over the second wild card spot and are now two games ahead of the Brewers for the final Wild Card spot with their convincing 9-3 win over the Rockies in Denver
Speaking of the Brewers, they kept rolling with their fourth straight win with a 10-2 rout of the Reds in Cincinnati