Pittsburgh– Winning a game yesterday was important for the psyche of the New York Mets but it didn’t resolve their issues in the least. The Mets entered the season with high expectations after fielding the biggest payroll in baseball history but have only delivered the results of a bad team at this point, often failing to sync up days where they can pitch and hit well. The pitching came through today against the Pittsburgh Pirates (34-30), allowing only two runs, but the Mets (31-35) scored just one to fall 2-1 in a bad end to a tough road trip.
The only offense the Mets produced on the afternoon came in the top of the fourth when Jeff McNeil launched a solo homer (3) off Pirates’ starter Mitch Keller. That lead didn’t last long as Carlos Carrasco gave up the tying homer on a Jack Suwinski solo shot (13) in the bottom of the frame. Ji Hwan Bae came through with a one out double and advanced to third on a wild pitch from Carrasco (L, 2-3), making it easy to score on an RBI single from Tucupita Marcano.
That would be all the offense that Keller (W, 8-2) would need as he held the Mets to just the one run on two hits in seven innings of work. The Mets did get the tying man on with one out in the ninth on a double from Tommy Pham but David Bednar retired the final two batters to pick up his 14th save of the season.
Simply put, this was an ugly road trip for the Mets, who left New York at .500 and return home four games below the break even point without Pete Alonso for at least three weeks due to an injury. The mediocre National League should keep the Mets in the race but they will have to start winning games in order to make things matter late in the season.
Player Of The Game:
Today’s Player of the Game award goes to Pirates’ starter Mitch Keller, who dominated a Mets’ lineup that had scored a combined 12 runs over the previous two games. Keller allowed only one run on two hits in seven innings while walking two and striking out seven.
Andrew McCutchen recorded his 2,000th career hit with a single in the first inning off of Carrasco.
Buck Showalter pinch hit for the struggling Mark Vientos in the eighth inning with Luis Guillorme, who struck out on a pitch clock violation, leaving Daniel Vogelbach on the bench in a spot that would have been an ideal pinch-hitting opportunity.
Suwinski was the only player on either team to record a multi-hit game.
The Mets went just 1-5 on their six-game road trip and haven’t won a road series since taking two out of three from the Los Angeles Dodgers in mid-April.
The Mets have a day off tomorrow before beginning a five-game home stand against the New York Yankees (38-28). RHP Max Scherzer (5-2, 3.71 ERA) is set to take the mound for the Mets. The Yankees have not decided who will start for them as of post time. First pitch for the opener of the 2023 Subway Series is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. on Tuesday at Citi Field.