Jacob deGrom is not supposed to allow six runs. He is not allowed to pitch four innings and strike out three. But on Tuesday night at Citi Field, the reigning NL Cy Young award winner was human again. That was not a quality start before 22,126 fans on a nasty night.
And deGrom offered no excuses about that record -tying 26 consecutive quality starts that came to an end. No surpassing Bob Gibson on a night the Mets lost a nasty one, 14-8, to the Minnesota Twins. The only highlight about this one was rookie Pete Alonso getting his first multi-home run game and third consecutive game hitting a ball out of the park.
Shutout innings after two starts and numerous other records are gone for now. The next start Sunday night, at Atlanta, and Jacob deGrom can start all over again with an ERA now at 3.18
Hey, give deGrom a break. After all he is human and was bound to have a let down, his shortest outing since his 1-0 inning on May 13 last season in Philadelphia. That 31-start streak of allowing three runs or fewer was also gone.
And allowing three home runs in a game? Jacob deGrom did that Tuesday night. But, he is human and not invincible. This was bound to happen on a night when two teams combined for 10 home runs that established a Citi Field record.
But there are no excuses. Nor should there be any from Jacob deGrom.
“We found out he is human finally,” manager Mickey Callaway said. “I didn’t think he was for a while. He just didn’t have it today. He and Bob Gibson had it longer than anybody else ever in the history of the game and tonight he just didn’t have it.”
Second inning, Mitch Garver hit a deGrom fastball to center that cleared the orange line. Garver would hit another one in the third inning. Jacob deGrom, as it appeared, did not have it this night. He could never get out of trouble and that was rare.
Said deGrom, “I’ve been through it before. And hopefully I’m around long enough to to have a couple more. I know there are a lot of good pitchers that had games like this.”
And over the years, Tom Seaver and Doc Gooden, two of the Mets Hall of Fame pitchers were also challenged and had their share of games like Jacob deGrom had Tuesday night. We have come to understand this is an exceptional right-hander who battles adversity and is expected to have a Cy Young Award outing every start.
His teammates are always confident. Mets fans are always confident that their team is in a game or will get a win when “Jake” gets the ball. It was a matter of time for disappointment, again no excuses offered about a cold night, or a rain delay of 25-minutes that pushed back the start of this game.
This was just not a Jacob deGrom night. It was not a good night for the Mets that snapped a seven game winning streak against the Twins in interleague play. We learned that Jacob deGrom is human and the game of baseball is not perfect.
The good thing from all of this, as bad as the pitching line looks, there is nothing wrong with Jacob deGrom The velocity was good, The location was not there and from this dominating pitcher there is that ability and fortitude to bounce back.
Those Mets in the post game clubhouse were more disappointed they could not fight back. They could not overcome and get their ace back in the game. But they all said, Jacob deGrom will bounce back and begin another streak.
Take this as one of those bad nights on the mound. Every pitcher has more than one during the course of their career. Except it was Jacob deGrom and this is not supposed to happen.
He is human, remember that.
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