2021 New York Mets Week 7 In Review 5/17-5/23
Coming off of the sweep in Tampa, the 2021 New York Mets hoped to turn it around for the start of a three-game series against the Atlanta Braves. Taijuan Walker took the hill against Max Fried. Walker’s day ended early when he was taken out of the game after only three innings. He was placed on the 10-day IL with left side tightness, adding to a lengthy list of injured Mets players.
Sean Reid-Foley replaced him and pitched three perfect innings of relief. In the top of the seventh, the Mets scored the first run of the game with a James McCann double, bringing home Tomas Nido. What seemed like a positive inning turned ugly quickly when Kevin Pillar got hit in the face with a fastball. It was a gruesome injury but Pillar managed to walk off the field without any help. He was diagnosed with multiple facial fractures and had to undergo surgery on his nose. It’s unclear as to when he will return.
With that HBP, the Mets went up by two runs. That wouldn’t be it though, in the top of the eighth rookie Johneshwy Fargas doubled to extend the lead to three. The Mets bullpen was phenomenal, allowing just one run in six innings of work. Against all odds, the Mets won the first game of the series. The final score was 3-1.
After six innings of work the night before, the Mets bullpen was asked to do even more on Tuesday with a bullpen game. Miguel Castro started against Tucker Davidson. Castro’s first and only inning of work was perfect. Next up was Tommy Hunter who also pitched great only allowing one walk with no hits over two innings. He also got the first hit of his career, which he was very happy about. In the top of the third, the Mets offense broke through with a two-run home run hit by Jonathan Villar. The Braves struck back quickly though with an Austin Riley solo home run in the bottom of the fifth.
The Mets added another run in the top of the sixth, with a sacrifice fly hit by Pete Alonso to bring Francisco Lindor home. This would be a very important run, as over the next two innings the Braves tied the game at three. It wouldn’t be tied for long though, Tomas Nido hit a clutch home run in the top of the ninth to put the Mets up by a run. This would end up being the winning run after Edwin Diaz shut the door in the bottom of the ninth. The final score was 4-3.
Going for the sweep, the Mets sent David Peterson to the mound to face off against the veteran Charlie Morton. The Mets got on the board first, with a Jonathan Villar home run to give the Mets a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth. The lead wouldn’t last long though. Peterson struggled in the bottom of the fifth, giving up three runs and leaving the bases loaded for Drew Smith. Smith got out of the inning, but the damage was done. However, the Mets came back in the top of the seventh with a pair of hits by Jose Peraza and Tomas Nido. It was all for naught though, as in the bottom of the eighth William Contreras singled to tie the game at four. The Mets never came back, as Ronald Acuna hit a walk-off home run to end the game. The final score was 5-4.
On Friday the Mets traveled to the Sunshine State for the start of a three-game series against the Miami Marlins. Marcus Stroman took on John Curtiss. Francisco Lindor got the Mets on the board early with an RBI double. He then came home after Dominic Smith flew out, and center fielder Magneuris Sierra made a throwing error forcing him home. Miami also scored early in the bottom of the second off of a Sandy Leon sacrifice fly. The red hot Tomas Nido gave the Mets a two run lead when he doubled to bring home Dominic Smith in the top of the fourth.
In a somewhat puzzling decision, Luis Rojas took out Stroman in the top of the seventh after walking the leadoff batter in the seventh inning. Miguel Castro came in and gave up a game-tying two run home run hit by Garrett Cooper. This might’ve been avoided if Stroman was left in, he only had 89 pitches and the bullpen needed rest. Nevertheless, the Mets still had a shot.
The game stayed tied and went into extra innings. Khalil Lee broke the tie for the Mets in the top of the twelfth, doubling in Jake Hager to put the Mets up by one. Just one batter later Johneshwy Fargas tripled, clearing the bases and giving the Mets a 6-3 lead. The Marlins nearly tied the game in the bottom of the twelfth, but the Mets secured the win with the final score being 6-5. After the game, the Mets announced that Pete Alonso was going on the 10-day IL with a right-hand sprain. Also, Jose Peraza left the game in the fourth inning with a right leg contusion. On a positive note both Hager and Lee had their first career hits in the big 12th inning.
Joey Lucchesi faced off against Pablo Lopez. Lucchesi had his best start as a Met so far, going four innings and only allowing one hit. There was a lot of debate around Luis Rojas’ decision to pull Lucchesi out of the game so early. ”Last night we didn’t know who was going to start the game, and this morning was when we committed to giving the ball to Lucchesi because he had probably the length that we needed and the four innings, which is what he gave us today. We felt it was safe for him with the ups and downs, and just from our pitching coach’s experience and any concern level that we may have just pushing a guy going maybe to a further up-down or pitch count after the four innings without having a side, that’s why we ended up going that way.”
Sean Reid-Foley replaced Lucchesi in the fifth. He pitched well except for one blip in the bottom of the seventh. Corey Dickerson hit a sacrifice fly, scoring Brian Anderson to give the Marlins a one-run lead. The Mets struck back an inning later when Dominic Smith singled to tie the game. The Mets couldn’t get the bats going in the top of the ninth though, and that was costly because Garrett Cooper hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth winning the game for the Marlins. The final score was 3-1.
In the rubber game, the Mets sent out Jordan Yamamoto against Cody Poteet. Yamamoto just didn’t have it on Sunday, giving up five runs in the bottom of the second. He left the game with shoulder soreness after four innings. Both Robert Gsellman and Yennsy Diaz pitched well in their four innings of work. Diaz was a part of the Steven Matz trade in the offseason, and Sunday’s game was his Mets debut. Outside of the solid bullpen performance, everything else went wrong for the Mets in this game. The bats fell asleep only putting one run on the board and Yamamoto didn’t look good and could be injured. The final score was 5-1.
This week was a bit of a microcosm of how this whole season has gone for the 2021 New York Mets. There were injuries, but they persevered for some good wins. The inexperience in the lineup and on the field did show in some tough losses though, which is to be expected. The best pitcher in baseball will return on Tuesday against the Colorado Rockies, which is obviously huge for the Mets for many reasons. One of them being he’ll give the bullpen some rest. The bullpen has been putting in a lot of innings and without any off days coming up, they’re going to need the starters to step up.
The Mets are back at Citi Field on Monday to begin a four-game series against the Rockies. Be sure to keep an eye out for the next 2021 New York Mets week in review article next week. These articles will come out every week for the rest of the 2021 New York Mets season.
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Taijuan Walker, Max Fried, Sean Reid-Foley, James McCann, Tomas Nido, Kevin Pillar, Johneshwy Fargas, Miguel Castro, Tucker Davidson, Tommy Hunter, Jonathan Villar, Austin Riley, Pete Alonso, Francisco Lindor, Tomas Nido, Edwin Diaz, David Peterson, Charlie Morton, Drew Smith, Jose Peraza, William Contreras, Marcus Stroman, John Curtiss, Francisco Lindor, Dominic Smith, Magneuris Sierra, Sandy Leon, Luis Rojas, Miguel Castro, Garrett Cooper, Khalil Lee, Jake Hager, Joey Lucchesi, Pablo Lopez, Corey Dickerson, Brian Anderson, Jordan Yamamoto, Cody Poteet, Robert Gsellman, Yennsy Diaz, and Steven Matz.