Saturday, May 10, 2014
Rapid Reaction: Phillies 5, Mets 4
By Danny Knobler
NEW YORK -- David Wright had a single, a double and a home run.
The way things are going for the New York Mets, even that wasn't enough.
Wright is hitting, but not enough of his teammates are, and when Kyle Farnsworth gave up a run in the ninth inning Saturday night, the Mets had a 5-4 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies and a five-game losing streak.
They also had a spot by themselves in the National League East cellar for the first time since the opening week of the season.
The blame for the latest loss doesn't rest only with the offense. The Mets took a 4-3 lead into the seventh inning, but the Phillies scored one run off Scott Rice in the seventh and another off Farnsworth on Ryan Howard's two-out single in the ninth.
The bullpen woes are another continuing story for the Mets, but so are the problems converting on chances to score runs.
The Mets had runners at second and third with one out in the eighth inning of a tie game Saturday, but rookie Eric Campbell looked at a third strike and pinch hitter Bobby Abreu bounced back to the mound to end the inning.
Wright began that eighth inning with his third hit of the night. His first was a two-run homer that tied the score in the first inning. The second was a double that tied it again in the sixth.
When Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon walked Daniel Murphy with two outs in the ninth, Wright got one more chance. But he popped up to end the game.
Wright has hit in eight straight games. He's batting .429 in that span. And the Mets keep losing.
Soup's up: Campbell's major league debut didn't go as planned. But maybe it was better than planned.
The 27-year-old rookie was in the Mets' original lineup Saturday, then was scratched when Lucas Duda declared himself fit to play. But with the bases loaded and one out in a tie game in the sixth, manager Terry Collins called on Campbell to pinch hit for Duda against Phillies left-hander Jake Diekman. Campbell's sacrifice fly brought home Murphy with the run that gave the Mets the lead.
Campbell, for what it's worth, was the first player in Mets history with a sacrifice fly in his first big league plate appearance.
Wright's drought ends: Wright has been getting his hits -- he brought a seven-game hitting streak into Saturday night's game, and he had a .905 OPS this month. But before the first inning Saturday, Wright hadn't hit a home run since Opening Day.
The 33-game drought was the longest of Wright's career. If you prefer to go by at-bats, the 136 at-bat drought was also the longest.
Gee's streak ends: Dillon Gee's scoreless innings streak didn't make it out of the first Saturday night. It didn't even survive the game's first out, a Chase Utley sacrifice fly that brought home Ben Revere. Gee had gone 16 innings without allowing a run, the longest streak by a Met since Miguel Batista went 16 1/3 in 2012, the same year R.A. Dickey had his franchise-record 32 2/3-inning streak.
Gee gave up three runs in the first two innings, then began another streak with four scoreless. Collins went to the bullpen after six even though Gee had thrown just 81 pitches.
Late start: Sometimes-heavy afternoon rains kept either team from taking batting practice on the field and delayed the start of the game by 39 minutes.
What's next: The Mets and Phillies wrap up the three-game series with a 1:10 p.m. game Sunday at Citi Field. Jonathon Niese (2-2, 1.82) starts for the Mets, with lefty Cole Hamels (0-2, 7.02) going for the Phillies. The Mets begin the Subway Series with the Yankees on Monday night at Yankee Stadium.