Jacob deGrom said it was a battle Saturday afternoon at Citi Field after giving up two earned runs for the first time this season. However, the Mets overcame a rare “slip up” from their ace and secured their sixth walk-off win of the season with a come from behind 4-3 victory over the Phillies.
Hey, deGrom is normal. We come to expect a no-hitter, one run or none from the NL two-time Cy Young Award winner, whose ERA rose from 0.50 to 0.69.
deGrom battled all game as 29,000 plus at Citi Field chanted “MVP-MVP” with his six innings of work. It was not a normal day at the office, but his bid to set a Mets record consecutive scoreless innings streak came to a close at 31 innings after rookie Nick Maton hit an RBI single in the second inning.
Did not matter about continuing a streak. Jacob deGrom is not about the records as much as he has compiled. It comes down to getting another win for his team, as the Mets maintained their hold on first place in the NL East over the Nationals, Phillies, and Braves.
“Jake is human,” said his manager Luis Rojas on the post game zoom. “So these things are going to happen.”
However, we have come to expect perfection from deGrom. He has spoiled Mets’ fans and those average fans of baseball. The 100-mile fastball did not overpower the Phillies. “I got really rotational probably from the fourth on,” deGrom said on the zoom after throwing 88 pitches. “That side was flying open, kind of lost the feel for the fastball and the slider, but the change up wasn’t really there all day. So I had to try and battle and find a way to throw it.”
So, of course this was not a typical deGrom day on the mound. He made some adjustments during those innings. The Mets fought back. “I was trying to fix it in the game,” he said. “But I think me trying to fix it almost made it worse. I was fortunate enough to get there with only giving up two runs.”
So the invincible Jacob deGrom gave up more than a run, but we always have to come back to reality because this is about the Mets winning ball games. Holding their lead in a division is becoming clear because the wild card sweepstakes will most likely come out of the West with the Giants, Dodgers, and Padres.
“You go out there and try to win a baseball game every day, and I think that’s what you see this group doing,” deGrom said.” To that comment, the Mets are doing their part to win ball games. On this day, when deGrom was relying more on the slider, his teammates got another close win over the Phillies and widened that division lead to six games.
The two time Cy Young winner was asked about the chemistry of this Mets team. Their ability to fight back when his dominance is not there led to another one run win over the Phillies. It’s more than an adjustment in between innings and on that sacred mound he has mastered. “They play ’til the last out and are locked in from the first pitch of the game,” he said. “If we keep doing that, hopefully we like where we end up.”
And we know this is not solely about deGrom, though the Mets are built to win and they are almost certain to get a win with his expected start every fifth time through the rotation.
“It’s a group mindset right now,” Rojas said. The Mets won their second walk-off in consecutive days.
It’s also Kevin Pillar and a game-tying home run in the seventh inning, and Luis Guillorme with a game-tying bases loaded walk off Phils’ reliever Hector Neris in the ninth.
And of course Michael Conforto with the walk-off sacrifice fly with bases loaded, and one out for the win, all on that day when the best pitcher on the planet did not have it
“The things we’re doing this year, they feel different for me,” Conforto said.
Of course it’s different. Jacob deGrom gave up more than one run and the Mets got another important win in their division.
Comment: Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso