MLB: Colorado Rockies at New York Mets

DeGrom continues march toward Rookie of the Year

Mets rookie RHP Jacob deGrom is scheduled to make his 21st start of the year Monday night against the Marlins at Citi Field.

“DeGrom deserves the NL Rookie of the Year award, and there shouldn’t be much doubt about that, though apparently, there is,” reporter Jon Heyman wrote early Monday (CBS Sports, Sept. 15). “He may not be Gooden or Seaver, but through 20 starts he’s outdoing both those Mets icons.”

DeGrom is 8-6 and leads National League rookies with that 2.62 ERA and 121 strikeouts.

mangan avatarBrian P. Mangan, MetsBlog Contributor: It began as a whisper, but slowly, inexorably, the calls grew louder and louder. I tried to deny it, because I’m not a homer nor a blind optimist. However, it can no longer be ignored that Jacob deGrom and Travis d’Arnaud should garner significant consideration for this year’s National League Rookie of the Year (ROY) award >> Read more from Sept. 11

Jeremy Hefner 2 (Baron)

No improvement on Hefner’s elbow

Jeremy Hefner visited Dr. James Andrews for a follow-up appointment, and his arm shows no healing.

Hefner has a forearm fracture and has re-torn his ulnar collateral ligament (MetsBlog, Aug. 11).

“Will continue to rest for a few more weeks. Surgery is likely, but not definite. Clarity will come soon,” he said (Hefner, Sept. 15).

Hefner has been rehabbing from Tommy John surgery and had appeared in a few games in the minor leagues before reinjuring himself.

Jon Niese gets his sign

Jon Niese made one bad pitch

Jon Niese cruised through the first six innings of Sunday’s game against the Nationals, allowing just four hits and no runs.

However, in the seventh inning, he made two mistakes that ended up costing him the game.

Lucas Duda scooped a ground ball from Ian Desmond to start the inning, but Niese was late to cover first base and Desmond was safe with a single. Wilson Ramos then clubbed a two-seam fastball out of the plate for a two-run home run.

“For the most part, I was putting the ball where I wanted to,” Niese said, who struck out seven batters. However, “It was that one mistake and he put a good swing on it.”

Niese is 8-11 with 3.55 ERA in 28 starts and 175 innings for the Mets this season.

He is due $7 million next season, followed by $9 million in 2016. He can earn $10 million in 2017 and $10.5 million in 2018 or be bought of his contract for $500,000 at the end of each season.

Mets had 7 runners on 2B, couldn’t score a run

The Mets were able to get seven runners to second base on Sunday, but went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and lost, 3-0, to the Nationals.


In response to a question about why the Mets struggled in these situations Sunday, Terry Collins pointed to the opposing pitcher, Jordan Zimmerman, who pitched 6 2/3 shutout innings.

“That’s one of the main things,” Collins said. “He knows what he’s doing to get outs.”

The Met are third to last in the National League when getting hits with runners in scoring position.

miniMCavatarMatthew Cerrone: Basically, 10 more hits and they’d be on average with the rest of the league. Those 10 hits, by the way, would also put them middle of the pack in terms of overall run production. And, if a few of those hits were home runs, they’d be middle of the pack in home runs as well. The point is, as Eno Sarris from told me the other week, the Mets are not far off on offense. They really only need to find 10-15 home runs this winter and get a more consistent — say .260 — hitter into that lineup and I think they’ll be fine so long as their pitching pulls the bulk of the weight.

Citi Field silhouette

The Nationals owned the Mets, who played well against everyone else

The Mets lost to the Nationals on Sunday, officially eliminating them from the NL East pennant race.

The Mets are 69-65 this season against teams not named the Nationals, who have gone 28-5 in Citi Field dating back to 2011.

The Nationals are 13-3 against the Mets this year. The two teams will meet Sept. 23-25 in DC for the final time this season.

The Mets must go 9-3 during the final 12 games this season to finish with a .500 record. They likely need to win all 12 games to outpace the Pirates for the final Wild Card spot.

That said, Terry Collins likes the direction of his team and looks forward to competition in the division next season…

“I don’t think we’re that far away,” Collins told reporters late Sunday at Citi Field. “We’re very, very close. … What a tremendous pitching division this is going to be. It’s not going to be easy on anybody. So we will continue to make sure our young players improve, try to eliminate some mistakes as they will the more they play. It should be a tremendous, tremendous division next year.”

miniMCavatarMatthew Cerrone: Well, to be fair, the Nationals, who are a young team themselves, will also be a year older and just as likely to improve, as will the Marlins. So, it’s not like the Mets will be the only team taking a step forward…

Nevertheless, he’s right, it’s going to be a pitching-rich division, which makes the Mets situation this winter all the more interesting. They have the pitching to trade if they want to acquire a more powerful hitter. However, if this division is going to be won or lost on the mound, the more pitching in Sandy Alderson’s arsenal the better. I do believe Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom and Jon Niese are going to mean more winning streaks than losing streaks next year. However, someone will get hurt, someone will stumble, something will happen as it always does – and if they’re not going to increase payroll – they’re unlikely to have the quality lineup and depth to out hit the opposition and compensate for a hit to the rotation.

I don’t envy Alderson for having to make these decisions.

What’s on Tap for Monday, Sept. 15

The Mets (72-78) open a three-game series against the Marlins (72-76) on Monday at Citi Field at 7:10 p.m. ET.

Jacob deGrom (8-6, 2.62 ERA) will get the start for the Mets, opposed by Jared Cosart (13-9, 3.70 ERA) for Miami.


Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 6.02.17 AM

Weekend Review

The Mets lost three of four to the Nationals, including a 3-0 defeat on Sunday >> Read more at MetsBlog

Vic Black‘s velocity was down on Saturday, after which he said his shoulder was bothering him. Black was examined and told by a doctor the issue is likely fatigue. Still, Black will have an MRI on his shoulder.

Terry Collins is all but certain to return as manager in 2015 >> Read more

After a celebration on Friday that some viewed as over the top, Terry Collins told Jenrry Mejia to tone down his post-save celebrations >> Read more at MetsBlog

Rafael Montero was moved to the bullpen. Except for one potential late-season start, Montero will work in relief for the remainder of the year.

Triple-A Las Vegas manager Wally Backman will join the Mets’ coaching staff on September 19 and work in that capacity through the end of the season.

The Double-A Binghamton Mets won the Eastern League Championship on Friday night.


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Game Recap: Nationals 3 – Mets 0

Recap: The Nationals claimed the finale of their four-game series with the Mets, 3-0, on Sunday at Citi Field.

MLB: Washington Nationals at New York Mets

Need to Know: Jon Niese was sharp for his third straight outing, striking out seven and allowing just two earned runs in seven innings. But, Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann was slightly better. Zimmermann shut out the Mets over 6 2/3 innings, walking only one, and striking out five.

The Nationals registered two runs in the seventh off Niese, as Wilson Ramos struck his 10th home run of the season. Washington’s bullpen tossed 2 1/3 scoreless frames, and Drew Storen picked up his fifth save, pitching into and out of a ninth-inning jam.

Wilmer Flores had two hits, including a triple, but the Mets were 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left 11 on base.

Links: AP recapBox

What’s next: The Mets will open three-game home series with the Marlins on Monday night at 7:10 p.m.. Jacob deGrom (8-6, 2.62 ERA) will get the ball for the Mets against Jarred Cosart (13-9, 1.93).

Today’s game: Nationals at Mets, 1:10 p.m. SNY

The Mets and Nationals complete their series on Sunday at Citi Field.

The game is scheduled to start at 1:10 p.m. and can be viewed on SNY.

Jordan Zimmerman (11-5, 2.93ERA) pitches for the Nats, while Jon Niese (8-10, 3.59 ERA) starts for the Mets.

Mets Nationals
1. Eric Young Jr. – LF 1. Denard Span – CF
2. Juan Lagares – CF 2. Anthony Rendon – 3B
3. Daniel Murphy – 3B 3. Jayson Werth – RF
4. Lucas Duda – 1B 4. Adam LaRoche – 1B
5.Wilmer Flores – 2B 5. Ian Desmond – SS
6. Curtis Granderson – RF 6. Bryce Harper – LF
7. Anthony Recker- C 7. Wilson Ramos – C
8. Rubden Tejada – SS 8. Danny Espinosa – 2B
9. Jon Niese – LHP 9. Jordan Zimmermann – RHP


MetsBlog Q&ACast, pres. by Verizon: Kevin Burkhardt talks Mets, leaving SNY

In this week’s MetsBlog Q&ACast, presented by Verizon, Matthew Cerrone says goodbye to Kevin Burkhardt, as the two talk about the end of the season, what’s next for the Mets and what’s next for Burkhardt, who will soon leave SNY for a job with FOX Sports…

Listen in separate window | Subscribe with iTunes | RSS

On the latest installment of Connect with SNY, presented by Verizon, Burkhardt looks back at his time with SNY >> Watch here