WASHINGTON – It is difficult to draw conclusions after four games. That’s only 2.5 percent of the regular season of 162 games, so please read the next sentence with that in mind. The Mets are one of the best teams in Major League Baseball.
On Sunday afternoon, they had a chance to become the first team in the MLB to reach four victories. In the home run of Francisco Lindor and the single of the outfielder Mark Kanya, the Mets took the lead by one run over the national team in the fourth inning. But after some mistakes on the Mets’ pitcher of pitchers and in the field by first baseman Pete Alonso, they lost 4-2 to Washington’s recovery at Nationals Park for their first defeat of the season.
National 4, Metz 2 | Result from the box Game by game
“It’s good to win the first series of the year, but dropping out later is unpleasant, especially for me,” Alonso said. “I did not want to do that. I didn’t want to go out there and disappoint anyone, especially anyone in the locker room. After not playing there, I disappointed the team. “
No one wants to lose, and defeats are inevitable during a six-month regular season. But in the opening series of the season, there were encouraging signs for the Mets fans that the team could fight for its first place since the 2016 season.
First, the initial rotation is strong. With aces Jacob de Grom, a two-time Cy Young National League winner, likely out for months with a right shoulder injury, the Mets will need the rest of the starting rotation to carry a heavier load. In four games, the starting staff has a 1.59 ERA
On the opening day, Tyler Megill, who started his 19th career start, replaced deGrom and fired five zero innings. The next day, star pitcher Max Scherzer made his debut at the Mets and made a strong outing despite the remnants of a minor hamstring injury. On Saturday, Chris Basitt, the 2021 All-Star, acquired by the Auckland Athletics in a deal in March, also made his Mets debut, throwing six zero innings with eight outs.
“I don’t care who you are. I’m coming after you, “Bassit said at the time, referring to Shohei Otani and Mike Trout of the Angels, who are former most valuable players and two of the best strikers in baseball. “I met a lot with Otani. I came across Trout a lot. I don’t care the name on the back of your shirt, I’m coming. “
Right-hander Carlos Carasco, in his second season as Matt, followed suit on Sunday. After undergoing surgery to remove a bone fragment from his elbow last October and saying during spring training that he felt he had a new elbow, Carasco backed up his words. He only allowed one run over five and two-thirds of the innings and said afterwards that a strong elbow allowed him to use all his games more often and efficiently than before. His only drawback: the Nationals determined the blow in the first inning of striker Nelson Cruz, the 450th home run of his career.
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“Carlos is in a different place now than he has been for some time,” said Mets manager Buck Shawolter, adding later: “It was good to see him start a good season because we could use him.”
Second, the Mets’ attack – and flexibility in the field – has improved so far with the help of newcomers such as field player Eduardo Escobar and outside players Starling Marte and Kanya. Escobar is 3 on 11 and plays good defense on third base. Marte is 3 against 14, but has driven in four runs. And Canha, who scored three goals on Sunday, played in all outfield positions and is 7 to 10.
One of the Mets’ weaknesses last year was their attack. They were 27th in running runs per game (3.93), 20th in midfield (.239), 23rd in on-base plus drilling (.706) and 25th in home runs (176).
“The guys we brought in blended very well,” said Jeff McNeill, second baseman and outfielder.
Bassit said people should expect high-paying talent (the Mets’ record $ 286 million mark is ahead of only the Los Angeles Dodgers for MLB’s highest). But he praised the Mets’ approach, especially on the plate.
“There are a lot of guys, a lot of teams, it’s all or nothing,” he said. “This team is not like that. We may be able to hit some Homers. We’ll just grind you until you break. And that’s the mentality we’ve been preaching since Day 1. We have a team to keep him going until that happens. “
That didn’t happen for the Mets on Sunday. Erick Fedde, the national’s initial pitcher, passed two runs for five innings and then four rebounds combined to allow just two hits.
And in the eighth inning, the Mets’ serve and defense shook. As a labor dispute led to shortened spring training, Showalter was careful, trying not to overload his battle early. So instead of the team’s top-pitched pitchers defending a 2-1 lead, he turned to left-hander Chasen Shreve and right-hander Trevor Williams, who combined to allow three runs. (The Mets’ closest friend, Edwin Diaz, is on the mourning list after his grandfather’s death.)
The national team equalized when they drew a safe press, as rookie Lucius Fox and Dee Strange-Gordon returned safely. Alonso said he did his best in a difficult game. Shawolter pointed to the cold weather, but said Strange-Gordon would probably have been out if Alonso had taken the ball out of his glove cleaner to throw it home after playing the bow.
Two playoffs later, Alonso’s wide throw to second base prevented the Mets from turning into a double at the end of the inning. Two shots later, Cruz gave the national team a 4-2 lead in a single match.
There are three Mets games against Philadelphia Phillies, one of the division’s rivals expected to fight them, and Atlanta, the reigning World Series champions, for first place in the NL East.
“This team is really good – the players in the positions, the starting pitches, everyone,” Carasco said on Sunday. “So we showed that we are really good. The important thing is to stay healthy and keep playing healthy. ”