New York Mets continue to squander opportunities in 2-1 loss

New York- When things are going poorly, it can sometimes come in waves. The New York Mets have been struggling offensively and have squandered their fair share of base runners, a brownout that has looked all too familiar to fans of recent teams. The San Diego Padres haven’t generated a ton of offense either but they have hit three home runs in this series. Those bombs have produced five of the six runs the Padres (54-42) have scored in two wins over the Mets (58-37), including tonight’s 2-1 win.

Things looked to be going well for Mets’ starter Chris Bassitt, who was perfect through the first four innings and matched his career high with 11 strikeouts in seven innings of work. The game was scoreless in the top of the sixth with a man on and two out for Manny Machado, who appeared to take an inning-ending third strike. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf missed the call and Bassitt (L, 7-7) missed down the middle on his next pitch as Machado deposited a two-run home run (16) into the left field seats to give San Diego a 2-0 lead.

That would be the only offense the Padres would generate all night and it would stand up as the Mets let Blake Snell (W, 2-5) bob and weave out of trouble repeatedly. Snell scattered four hits and two walks over five shutout innings and the bullpen did some solid work as well. Closer Taylor Rogers ran into trouble in the ninth, allowing two men to reach before a bloop single by J.D. Davis brought a run home, but recovered to induce a game-ending pop-up from Tomas Nido to secure his 28th save of the year.

Even when you factor in the fact that Wolf’s missed call directly led to the Machado home run, two runs shouldn’t be a death sentence in a big league game. The Mets got the leadoff man on in six of the nine innings in this game and only got one run. Going 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position certainly didn’t help and Buck Showalter’s decision to let Nido hit for himself with the tying run on third in the ninth inning with Jeff McNeil and newly-acquired Daniel Vogelbach on the bench certainly didn’t help.

Player of the Game:

Today’s Player of the Game award goes to Padres’ third baseman Manny Machado, whose two-run homer in the sixth inning proved to be the only offense San Diego needed on the night.

Post-Game Notes:

    The Padres won despite recording just four hits and striking out 15 times.

    Pete Alonso paced the Mets’ offense by going 3-for-4 with a double and scored the team’s only run in the ninth inning.

    The Atlanta Braves beat the Los Angeles Angels 7-2 to cut the Mets’ National League East lead to just a half-game, the smallest it has been since April 6.

    The Mets have now lost three games in a row at home for the first time this season and just the second time overall.

What’s Next:

The Mets will look to avoid getting swept by the Padres as they wrap up this three-game series tomorrow night. RHP Carlos Carrasco (10-4, 4.27 ERA) will take the mound for the Mets while the Padres will counter with RHP Joe Musgrove (8-2, 2.42 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 7:08 p.m. at Citi Field and the contest will be televised nationally as part of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball package.