A quick take on the Mets' 9-4 loss to the Colorado Rockies in the second game of a single-admission doubleheader at Citi Field on Thursday afternoon:
WHAT IT MEANS: The Mets get swept in a double-dip, at home, by the Colorado Rockies. The Rockies also leave New York with a four-game sweep of the series -- their first sweep of the Mets in New York since 1994. Three of the four losses were by a single run.
After a 3-1 start, the Mets are now floundering at 4-9, having lost five in a row and eight of nine. The Rockies, meanwhile, are 10-2 -- the best record in the majors, and the best start in franchise history.
THE SKINNY: The Mets struck first in this one, just like in Thursday's first game. Ike Davis walked and Scott Hairston doubled to lead off the bottom of the second, and both scored on a double by backup catcher Mike Nickeas. But the Rockies tied it up in the very next frame. Carlos Iannetta doubled, and scored on a Dexter Fowler single; Fowler then scored after a Jonathan Herrera single, followed by a fielder's choice off the bat of Carlos Gonzalez.
Jose Reyes came up with a clutch hit in the fourth inning, driving home Brad Emaus (bunt single) and Nickeas (walk) with a two-out single. But the Rockies answered with a six-run eruption in the sixth, headlined by a solo homer by Troy Tulowitzki and a three-run shot by Jonathan Herrera.
The Rockies tacked on a run in the ninth inning off Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez, who was pitching in mop-up duty in front of a near-empty stadium.
IN THE FIELD: The Mets had their problems in the field for the second straight game. In the six-run sixth inning, Carlos Beltran appeared to have trouble tracking a fly ball that fell into right field for a base hit -- it could have been the sun. Then Emaus bobbled a potential double-play ball with one out that would have kept the score 4-3 Mets. Instead, the Mets got just one out at second on the play, a run scored, and then four more came home in the inning -- three on Herrera's blast.
ON THE MOUND: Like R.A. Dickey in the first game of the doubleheader, Chris Capuano did not get a lot of help from those playing behind him. He had pretty easy innings in the first, second, fourth and fifth. But he struggled through the third, and couldn't get through the sixth. The lefty gave up seven runs on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings, taking his first loss as a Met.
As for the bullpen, Taylor Buchholz relieved Capuano and surrendered the Herrera home run. After that, Ryota Igarashi hurled a scoreless seventh, Jason Isringhausen hurled a scoreless eighth (with two strikeouts), and K-Rod gave up three consecutive singles with one out in the ninth, leading to Colorado's final run.
AT THE PLATE: The Mets mustered just five hits off Rockies starter Jorge De La Rosa in 6 2/3 innings, and zero against the Colorado bullpen. Reyes extended his hitting streak to 12 games with that two-run single in the fourth. Nickeas' two RBIs in the second were the first two of his major-league career. Those were the bright spots.
On the dark side, Beltran was 0-for-4 on the game, with two strikeouts. Angel Pagan was 0-for-4 in the game, and 0-for-7 in the doubleheader (with a sac fly). And Ike Davis was 0-for-5 in the doubleheader (with three walks).
WHAT'S NEXT: The Mets will fly to Atlanta -- a place they traditionally struggle -- for a three-game series with the Braves, who are also off to a slow start at 5-7. D.J. Carrasco (0-0, 4.05) will start for the Mets on Friday night. The Braves will go with Derek Lowe (1-2, 1.45).
The Rockies fly home to Colorado, where they will host the Chicago Cubs for a three-game set, starting Friday night.