Mets earn exciting series split with Dodgers as unlikely heroes step up
The Mets won a thriller against the top team out West. Plus, a look at how New York proved their worth in Los Angeles
What’s Up with the Mets? ⚾
The Mets overcame another multi-run deficit to the Dodgers and won in extra innings 5-4 at Dodger Stadium (box)
New York managed a split with the Dodgers after dropping the first two games in Los Angeles
The Mets were trailing most of the game until a rally in the eighth led by Francisco Lindor and Pete Alonso helped give the Mets their first lead of the day
RHP Seth Lugo blew the save in the ninth when he gave up two runs to send the game to extra innings, but JD Davis came up with the big hit in the tenth inning to give the Mets a one-run lead
Rookie RHP Adonis Medina retired Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman and Wil Smith in the bottom of the tenth to pick up the first save of his young career
RHP Trevor Williams was solid in his five innings of work for the Mets and gave up just two runs on one swing of the bat of Trea Turner
This was the first time the Mets won a game when trailing in the 8th inning or later at Dodger Stadium since 2007
The Mets are now 5-0 in extra inning games this season, are 18-11 on the road, 9-12 when the opponent scores first, 8-7 in one-run games, earned their 14th comeback win and their seventh win in their last at-bat
Who’s Hot 🔥
1B Pete Alonso is in sole position of the major league leaderboard for RBIs after going 1-for-5 with one RBI in the finale against the Dodgers. Alonso has hit .378/.417/.993 with seven home runs in 45 at-bats in his career at Dodger Stadium
With Robinson Canó DFA-ed and Dominic Smith demoted to Triple-A, JD Davis is getting the majority of at-bats at DH. After a slow start he is now seeing regular at bats and is quietly hitting .304/.385/.391 over his last seven games. He went 1-for-4 Sunday driving in the game winning run in the tenth
SS Francisco Lindor went 2-for-4 with a run scored so his bat so far doesn’t seem to be hindered by the door incident
Today’s Game 🗓
Match-up: Mets (37-19) at Padres (33-21)
Where: Petco Park — San Diego, CA
Starters: RHP Carlos Carrasco (6-1, 3.63 ERA) vs LHP Blake Snell (0-2, 4.80 ERA)
When: 9:40 PM EST
Where to Watch: SNY
It was the worst of times, it was the best of times during a rollercoaster weekend in LA 📝
When the calendar flipped to June, the collective anxiety of the Mets fanbase rocketed up a few notches.
The month actually got off to a good start when the team finished off a sweep of the lowly Nationals in New York, but then the true test set in as the team made their way out west to face a more formidable opponent in the Dodgers.
The Dodgers are tops in their tough division, have the top pitching staff in the league, and are stacked with sluggers in their lineup top-to-bottom. So of course the Metsing started as soon as they got to Los Angeles when SS Francisco Lindor had a hotel door slam on his finger and he couldn’t play in the series opener. It got worse when it was reported RHP Max Scherzer had suffered a dog bite on his hand, although to be fair to both players they both were adamant these were non-stories.
And, Lindor proved it on the field by immediately returning on Friday and hitting a home run over the course of the weekend.
Still, it just all felt so darn Metsy, didn’t it? Combined with two losses to open the series, and with years of June Mets-related trauma to fall back on, the immediate reaction from the fans was that the sky was falling. The Braves and Phillies both got hot so all the evidence was there that the June swoon was well on its way.
However, somehow someway this team stopped the bleeding.
They won two games started by LHP David Peterson and RHP Trevor Williams against the Los Angeles Freaking Dodgers.
If you had Williams and Peterson starting the games the Mets would win in this series, go out and play the lotto immediately. Williams certainly acquitted himself nicely on Sunday - he pitched five solid innings, making just one mistake to Trea Turner in the first. His ERA is 3.58 for the year and looks perfectly capable to hold the fort while his injured rotation-mates work their way back. Even when the cavalry arrives, he could be an asset in the bullpen either as a swingman for the rotation or in long relief.
Another interesting development on Sunday was Buck Showalter turning to RHP Edwin Díaz in the eighth inning with Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman, and Trea Turner due up after the Mets had just taken the lead. Showalter famously never turned to Zack Britton in the 2016 Wild Card Game so it is certainly promising he knew he needed his best reliever in the biggest spot, and Díaz delivered. Unfortunately RHP Seth Lugo did not when he blew the save in the ninth but it was still the right move - hopefully that turn of events won’t deter Showalter from employing that strategy against crucial opponents in the future.
Still, that left Showalter being forced to turn to rookie RHP Adonis Medina for a save chance with the ghost runner on second and the heart of the lineup coming up again for the Dodgers in the tenth. But he came through unscathed - he induced a shallow fly ball to Mookie Betts and then a ground out to Freeman. Then Medina got one of the unlikeliest of outcomes with Trea Turner at the plate on a catcher’s interference call, taking the bat out of his hands and putting it in the hands of Will Smith, who struck out to end the game and deliver the Mets their biggest win of the season to-date.
In a weird way, the catcher’s interference call against Tomás Nido with two outs in the tenth inning with Trea Turner at the plate might’ve been a game saver. That put one of baseball’s hottest hitters on, albeit the winning run, to get Will Smith to the plate, who is no where near the threat Turner is.
I am not sure what was unlikelier when all was said and done. That the offense broke out against RHP Walker Buehler on Saturday, or that Medina pulled that rabbit out of his hat as he navigated the heart of the Dodger lineup in the tenth inning to shut the door.
Anyway, what started off looking like a potential lost weekend was saved by both Pete Alonso and an unlikely hero in Medina with some clutch and timely hitting in-between. If the Mets want to go to the promise land this season, they will unquestionably need to go through Southern California and need all 26 players and beyond to contribute. And they got that collective effort this weekend and earned a great team win on Sunday.
While this merely looks like a series split on the calendar, it’s way bigger than that for this team - they showed not only they can hang with the league’s elite, but also their character and guile in the manner in which they won on Sunday specifically.
It’s still early in June and the schedule doesn’t get any easier but as JD Davis said postgame, “The test is more so at the end of the year. I think this was maybe moreso a quiz.”
A quiz the Mets passed.
Down on the Farm 🌾
Francisco Álvarez (C, No. 1 Prospect, Double-A): 1-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
Khalil Lee (OF, No. 7 Prospect, Triple-A): 1-for-5, HR, 2 RBI
Ronny Mauricio (SS, No. 3 Prospect, Double-A): 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI, 2 runs scored
Around the League 🚩
Phillies DH Bryce Harper hit a game-tying grand slam and SS Bryson Stott walked it off with a three-run home run to hand the Angels their eleventh straight loss
The Texas Rangers designated OF Willie Calhoun for assignment
The Braves finished off a sweep of the Rockies to win their fifth straight game
The Yankees have a six game winning streak after they walked-off the Tigers in the tenth inning
Five players on the Tampa Bay Rays took the Pride logos off their uniforms while the team tried celebrate the LGTBQ community