After surrendering a run in the second inning, Steven Matz pitched beautifully through 6 innings while the Mets' bats were quiet and inopportunistic against Dallas Kuechel in a 1-0 ballgame.
Then came the 7th.
In the top of the 7th, with two outs and no one on, Mickey Callaway decided to let Steven Matz stay in the game and bat. Steven wound up getting on base with his second hit of the night. Amed Rosario followed Steven's base hit with one of his own, and with a mental mistake by Braves centerfielder Ender Inciarte, Rosario took second on the throw to third and the Mets all of a sudden had runners on 2nd and 3rd with JD Davis at the plate still trailing 1-0.
JD worked a 2-1 count and fisted one (yeah) to short centerfield that seemed to be in the air for 10 minutes before dropping in front of aforementioned Inciarte for a base hit. Both Matz and Rosario came around to score and the Mets took a 2-1 lead heading into the bottom of the 7th. You with me? Good.
Now when Mickey let Steven Matz bat in the top of the 7th, I think everyone assumed that Matz would also be pitching the bottom half of the inning. Well, I guess Mickey didn't figure we would take the lead with 2 outs and no one on base, because to my surprise when the Braves came to bat in the bottom of the 7th, Seth Lugo was pitching.
Seth Lugo has been the best reliever in baseball over the last four weeks. He won NL Reliever of the month in July. His streak of 26 straight batters retired recently came to an end over the weekend and no one can blame Mickey for giving the ball to a stud in a very important spot. But it was the 7th inning. and Matz had 79 PITCHES.
I repeat: MATZ HAD 79 PITCHES THROUGH 6 INNINGS OF 2 HIT / 1 RUN BALL!
What the fuck Mickey? We needed Lugo in this game no doubt. But not in the 7th when Matz was rolling (retired 14 straight) and hadn't even thrown 80 fucking pitches. What the fuck are you thinking.
So it was a bad call to bring in the Sethman this early when Matz was doing just fine. What happened next turned it from bad, to "jesus christ only us" bad.
Let me take you through the inning batter by batter:
Inciarte Single. Donaldson Scores.
Flowers Single. Duvall Scores.
Joyce Single (Flowers thrown out at 2nd for Fielders Choice). Camargo Scores.
Acuna Single. Inciarte Scores.
Albies Single. Joyce Scores.
What the fuck just happened? It was the most 2015 Royals inning of all time. I felt like fucking KGB in Rounders watching these fucking bleeder singles get down. The fact only one run was coming around each time with the bases loaded tells you how shitty the hits were.
Check Check Check Check!
But Wait! There's More!
After I'm sure any Mets fan with an ounce of sanity left turned off their TV, the Mets decided to inspire hope once more.
In the top of the 9th trailing 6-2, the Mets collected four straight hits by Lagares, Panik, Rosario and Guillorme to cut the lead to 6-4 with one out and runners on first and second. With Pete Alonso coming up! But the meat of the order was all bones tonight. Alonso grounded into a fielder's choice that originally had Guillorme called out at second, but was overturned upon review after Albies booted it trying to turn two. "It's meant to be!" Cried every delusional fan. The Mets had bases loaded with one out and Ramos and Conforto coming up in a 2 run game. Ya Gotta Believe! Nope. Both struck out and to make it more painful the Braves brought in Jerry Blevins to get the final out against Conforto, who has a massive problem against lefties right now. Another missed golden opportunity. Another painful loss.
And now we look forward to Teheran vs. Stroman tomorrow and try and avoid the sweep. Master Pio said it best. It feels like a lifetime ago since we were riding high winning 15 of 16 and making a charge in the division and wild card. Tomorrow is basically Must Win and then we need to take 2 of 3 on the road in Kansas City which is going to be near impossible after we just got singled to death by Atlanta and I'm sure anyone still on the club from 2015 has the same PTSD that I do drawing back to that World Series where the Royals scored a billion runs with zero hits out of the infield. Fuck Baseball sometimes. I swear if Familia throws one pitch in KC I will shoot myself.
PS - Matt Harvey signed with the A's today. I'm an A's fan now.
PPS - On the bright side Rosario went 4-5 and Lagares hit the ball hard almost every time coming off of his 4 hit night last night. Need contributions from everyone to make this run happen.