Saturday, August 16, 2014
Rapid Reaction: Mets 7, Cubs 3
By Adam Rubin
NEW YORK -- Now that the undercard is over, it's on to the Boyz II Men postgame concert!
Vic Black bailed the Mets out of a precarious predicament in the seventh, and the Amazin’s held on to beat the Chicago Cubs 7-3 on Saturday at Citi Field.
Jonathon Niese had cruised into the seventh with a six-run lead, having only allowed a Welington Castillo solo homer, when things quickly cratered.
Justin Ruggiano led off with a homer, and the next four batters singled. By the time Niese departed, the Cubs had pulled within four runs, and the bases remained loaded, still with none out.
Black rescued the Mets.
He coaxed a fly out to left field from Chris Coghlan, and the runners decided to hold. Black then got Javier Baez and Anthony Rizzo to pop out in the infield to preserve the 7-3 lead.
Black has now stranded 19 straight inherited baserunners.
Oh captain: Eric Campbell replaced David Wright at third base for the seventh inning, a half-inning after the captain was drilled by a pitch from Cubs starter Dan Straily in the left shoulder blade. The Mets labeled the injury shoulder soreness.
Early lead: After Wilmer Flores drove in two runs with a single to stake the Mets to a 3-0 lead in the second, Straily retired 12 straight batters in his Cubs debut. Things then unraveled for the former Oakland Athletics right-hander in what became a four-run sixth, despite the Mets' producing only one hit in the frame.
With one out, Straily drilled Wright, walked Lucas Duda, surrendered a single to Travis d'Arnaud and walked Matt den Dekker to force in a run and give the Mets a 4-1 lead.
Cubs manager Rick Renteria pulled Straily at that point.
Kyuji Fujikawa inherited loaded bases and immediately experienced a letdown behind him. Center fielder Arismendy Alcantara had Juan Lagares' line drive glance off his glove for a sacrifice fly and E-8, as two runs scored. After an intentional walk to Flores with first base open, Niese followed with a run-scoring groundout, and the Mets grabbed a 7-1 lead.
Buddy! Buddy Carlyle tossed a scoreless ninth to extend his scoreless-innings streak to 11 1/3 innings.
What’s next: Rafael Montero makes his second and potentially final start as a sub for Jacob deGrom at 1:10 p.m. Sunday. Montero (0-3, 6.12 ERA) opposes right-hander Jake Arrieta (6-4, 2.77).
DeGrom is due to throw off a mound Sunday and, if all goes according to plan, should return Saturday at Dodger Stadium.
Montero allowed homers to Bryce Harper, Anthony Rendon and Ian Desmond and was charged with five runs in five innings Tuesday against the Washington Nationals in the rookie’s return to the majors. He also made four major league starts in May.