Final Score: Cubs 7 Mets 0

The New York Mets (46-40) lost to the Chicago Cubs (33-52) today by a score of 7-0.

[jbox color = “gray”]

The Least You Should Know:

Jon Niese (7-4) threw seven innings and allowed seven runs on nine hits and struck out three.

The Mets had eight hits, but weren’t able to push any runs across against Cubs’ pitching.

Daniel Murphy had three of those hits to push his average to .295. 

The Mets were 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position.

This was the fourth time the Mets have been shut out this season.

[/jbox]

For a complete box score and game recap, check out SNY’s In-Game Live.

[line]

Brian Erni: Niese had a fairly strange start. The Cubs came out swinging right out of the gate and touched Niese up for four runs on five hits in the top of the first, though the inning was more of a product of well-placed hits than well-struck balls. Then, Niese mowed down the Cubs for five innings; at one point, he retired 17 of 18. But with two on and two out in the seventh, Starlin Castro teed off on an inside fastball for a three-run home run to put the game out of reach. As Niese continues his development, it was encouraging that he was able to settle in after a tough start, though the back-breaking home run was frustrating.

Despite being placed in a situation to fight uphill, the Mets’ offense had plenty of opportunities to chip away at the deficit. Scott Hairston tripled with one out in the second, but Jordany Valdespin and Josh Thole failed to get him home. They also put the first two runners on in the third and the sixth, but both times, the runners didn’t even more up a base.

While losing two of three to the Cubs was not the way most envisioned finishing up before the All Star break, the Mets are still positioned nicely for the second half. They’ll need to make some hay right away, as the Mets will resume with a six game road trip to Turner Field for three with the Braves, then three in Washington against the Nationals.

[line]

WB Mason Post Game Extra