Saturday, June 7, 2014
Rapid Reaction: Giants 4, Mets 2
By Adam Rubin
SAN FRANCISCO -- After the New York Mets were swept by the lowly Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field, the team with Major League Baseball's best record handed the Amazin's their latest defeat.
Hey, at least they weren’t no-hit!
New York survived a dominant performance by Matt Cain and actually chased him with a lead. However, Carlos Torres issued a four-pitch leadoff walk to ex-Met Angel Pagan and then surrendered a tiebreaking one-out home run to Buster Posey in the eighth as the San Francisco Giants beat the Mets, 4-2, Friday at AT&T Park.
Cain unable: Cain retired the first 12 Mets batters, took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning, and didn’t win? Yep.
Matt den Dekker had a leadoff double in the seventh and Daniel Murphy followed that with a two-run homer on a hanging slider and all of a sudden the Mets, who had been silent offensively, had a 2-1 lead.
Cain had faced the minimum through six innings in his return from a DL trip for a right hamstring strain.
The Mets (28-33) had their first baserunner when plate umpire Rob Drake did not give Cain a strike call on a 3-1 pitch to Curtis Granderson at the inside corner to lead off the fifth. The Giants ace immediately erased Granderson anyway by coaxing a double-play grounder from Andrew Brown.
Ruben Tejada produced the Mets’ first hit on an infield single into the hole at shortstop to lead off the sixth. Travis d’Arnaud followed by grounding into a double play, too.
Cain at least was absolved of getting tagged with a loss once Brandon Crawford delivered a two-out RBI single up the middle in the seventh against Jonathon Niese to even the score at 2. Niese had walked former Mets farmhand Brandon Hicks and uncorked a wild pitch to advance him into scoring position.
Cain’s line: 7 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K.
Niesely done: With less flair than Cain, Niese took a scoreless effort into the fifth inning. The southpaw then surrendered a one-out triple to Hicks. Crawford followed with the first of his two RBIs, on a sacrifice fly to left field.
For the second straight game, Brown made a strong throw to the plate. This time, however, the ball struck Hicks as he slid into the plate, preventing d’Arnaud from even attempting to make a play, and San Francisco took a 1-0 lead.
Niese’s line: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K. He departed at 94 pitches and was replaced by Torres for the eighth.
You? Hicks doubled, tripled, walked and scored twice -- hard to believe considering his dreadful showing in major league camp with the Mets in 2013. Hicks hit .116 (5-for-43) and committed four errors in Grapefruit League play. He then spent last season at Triple-A Las Vegas before departing as a free agent.
Freefalling: d’Arnaud went 0-for-3 with a foul pop out and two double plays. He is 3-for-26 since returning from the disabled list for a concussion and is now hitting .180.
What’s next: Things do not get any easier for the Mets as Bartolo Colon (5-5, 4.52 ERA) faces right-hander Tim Hudson (6-2, 1.75) at 10:05 p.m. ET on Saturday. The ex-Brave's ERA leads the majors.