New York Mets: Andruw Jones

Rapid Reaction: Yankees 5, Mets 4

June, 10, 2012
WHAT IT MEANS: The euphoria generated by Johan Santana’s no-hitter nine days ago officially is extinguished.

A pair of infield miscues opened the door for a Yankees comeback as the Mets failed to protect a three-run lead over the final three innings. The Amazin’s ultimately were swept in the Subway Series with a 5-4 loss Sunday. Russell Martin delivered the walk-off win in the bottom of the ninth with a leadoff homer against Jon Rauch.

The Mets (32-29) were swept in the Bronx for only the second time since the inception of the Subway Series in 1997.

Having squandered a three-run lead, the Mets opened the ninth with consecutive doubles by Lucas Duda and Ike Davis against Rafael Soriano to pull even at 4 -- with Duda’s shot misread by center fielder Curtis Granderson. Davis, who produced his first ninth-inning hit in nine at-bats this season, then was erased at third base on a grounder to shortstop.

Where did things unravel?

With the Mets leading 3-2, Omar Quintanilla had a grounder from Derek Jeter roll under his glove to begin the bottom of the eighth, and the Yankee captain hustled to second base. Jeter ultimately scored the tying run on Mark Teixeira’s single up the middle against Bobby Parnell. Alex Rodriguez followed by driving in the go-ahead run with a bloop single to shallow right field.

The Mets held a 3-0 lead with two out into the seventh behind Jon Niese, when David Wright’s two-out throwing error, which Vinny Rottino could not handle at first base, allowed Andruw Jones to reach. Martin followed with a two-run homer to the short porch in right field at Yankee Stadium for a pair of unearned runs that pulled the Yankees within a run.

Now at the midpoint of a stretch of eight straight series against teams with winning records, the Mets still have series with the Rays, Reds, Orioles and Yankees remaining in that stretch. So far against the Phillies, Cardinals, Nationals and Yankees, the Mets are 5-8.

Three of the wins came in the four-game series against the Cardinals that included Santana’s no-hitter.

Mark Simon of ESPN Stats & Information notes that six times this season Parnell has induced a groundball that has resulted in the batter reaching via error. (Jeter’s technically was scored a single, with the error allowing him to reach second base.) Thirty-five of the 84 balls his in the ballpark against Parnell have been hits or errors -- an amazingly high total.

THEY WERE HEROES: Using a makeshift lineup, the Mets received contributions from Rottino and Jordany Valdespin, who combined to drive in three runs in the second inning.

That rally actually stalled when Jason Bay and Wright consecutively struck out with the bases loaded. Bay is 0-for-11 since returning from the DL.

Scott Hairston continued to torment left-handed pitching as well as the Mets built the early lead. Hairston doubled and scored in the second inning on Rottino’s single. Hairston then singled in his next at-bat, although Andy Pettitte’s pickoff move froze him and led to a caught stealing (as was the case with Wright two innings later).

Rottino was starting at first base over Davis against the southpaw. Davis entered as a defensive replacement for the bottom of the eighth with the Mets trying to protect a one-run lead -- one inning after Rottino could not handle Wright’s throw at first base.

Hairston went 2-for-3 against Pettitte, upping his average against left-handed pitching this season to .364 (24-for-66). He also has started to see more action against righties, starting not only Thursday’s series finale in D.C. once Bay was scratched but also Friday’s series opener in the Bronx as well against Hiroki Kuroda.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Mets plan to fly to Tampa after the game and spend an off-day with their families in Florida. They return to action Tuesday against the Rays, with Chris Young making his second major league start since returning from shoulder surgery. Young (0-0, 3.60 ERA) opposes right-hander Alex Cobb (2-2, 4.12).

Debby Wong/US Presswire
Johan Santana wasn't sharp in his first game after the no-hitter. Terry Collins blamed himself, saying two extra days of rest deprived Santana of his sharpness.
In his first start since last Friday's no-hitter, Johan Santana matched a career high by serving up four homers -- including back-to-back-to-back blasts by Robinson Cano, Nick Swisher and Andruw Jones in the third inning -- as the Yankees routed the Mets in the Subway Series opener, 9-1, Friday in the Bronx.

Yankees starter Hiroki Kuroda held the Mets hitless until Omar Quintanilla's two-out double in the sixth.

Santana, who entered the outing having tossed consecutive shutouts, had never allowed homers to three straight batters. The last Met to surrender three straight homers: John Maine at Dodger Stadium on June 12, 2007. Santana had only surrendered four total long balls total in his first 11 starts of the season. His line in an 86-pitch effort: 5 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 4 HR.

Afterward, Terry Collins blamed himself for Santana's performance, suggesting the two extra days of rest upset the ace's sharpness.

Collins originally wanted Santana to pitch on one extra day of rest Thursday, with R.A. Dickey pitching a day early and Jeremy Hefner unneeded for a spot start. Santana replied that he did not want to disrupt Dickey's groove. So Santana requested to go on normal rest Wednesday, albeit with a low pitch count. Instead, Collins opted for the two extra days following Santana's 134-pitch no-hitter.

"He's rusty," Collins said. "It's my doing, not his. ... We erred on the side of caution and it cost us the game tonight."

Tonight at 7:15 p.m. on Fox, Dillon Gee (4-3, 4.48) opposes Yankees right-hander Phil Hughes (5-5, 4.96) in the Bronx.

Saturday's news reports:

• Rookie Elvin Ramirez could not limit the damage after Santana departed. Ramirez, making his third major league appearance, walked four and was charged with three runs in 1 2/3 innings. The Mets' lone run came with two outs in the ninth inning against ex-teammate Ryota Igarashi. Read game recaps in the Post, Journal, Daily News, Star-Ledger, Newsday and Record.

Jon Rauch rejoined the Mets bullpen after skipping the series in D.C. to allow the inflammation in his "debris"-littered right elbow to calm. He entered with the Mets trailing by nine runs in the eighth and tossed a scoreless frame that included one bloop hit. Rauch said he took anti-inflammatory medication while remaining behind in New York. He assigned the root of the issue to bones grating with each other and irritating a nerve. He told reporters surgery will not be necessary. Read more in the Star-Ledger and Record.

Jason Bay, scratched from Thursday's lineup because of nausea he blamed on antibiotics being taken for a sinus infection, made his first appearance with the Mets since April 23 in the series opener. Bay started in left field and batted seventh. He went 0-for-3 with a strikeout. Lucas Duda served as the DH.

Scott Hairston, who entered Wednesday's starting lineup after Bay was scratched, started a second straight game against a right-hander over odd-man-out Andres Torres. The current outfield crunch is not as severe as it will be next Friday, when the Mets return to National League play at home against Cincinnati and lose the DH. At that point, Duda could shift to first base and Ike Davis could be vulnerable. Davis went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts in the opener against the Yankees. Former hitting coach Howard Johnson (@20Hojo) tweeted about Davis: "Ike's reputation of questioning umpires on every strike is coming back to haunt him...anything close goes against him..." Read more on Bay's return and the outfield in the Post, Record and Newsday.

• The Mets could have kept Chris Young on paternity leave Friday and activated him today. But team officials opted to activate him a day early, so that he could be at the ballpark and prepare for Tuesday's start in Tampa. The other, and perhaps bigger surprise related to that roster move? Pedro Beato, not Hefner was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo. Collins reasoned that the Mets needed a long man/spot starter, so presumably Miguel Batista is going to take on more bullpen responsibility than mop up. The problem about Friday's game is that Hefner had thrown 99 pitches Wednesday and undoubtedly needed recuperation time, so Ramirez and Batista relieved Santana. Beato did not appear in a game with the Mets during a two-game cameo after coming off the 60-day DL.

Josh Satin cleared waivers and will return to Buffalo. Jack Egbert, who cleared waivers the previous day, rejoined the Bisons on Friday. The Mets needed their 40-man roster spots for the addition of Young and activation of Beato. Beato didn't count against the 40-man roster while on the 60-day DL.

• A second X-ray of Quintanilla's left index finger, which was taken in New York after returning from the Nats series, revealed the shortstop had a fracture at the tip. Still, Quintanilla resolved to gut through any pain without missing time. Ruben Tejada, who was examined in New York, now will proceed to the Mets' complex in Port St. Lucie, Fla. He is due to next test his balky right quadriceps Monday by running -- six days after pulling himself from a rehab game in Buffalo. Meanwhile, Ronny Cedeño (calf) should run this weekend and may be in a rehab game within days. Read more in Newsday.

• Did Collins do the right thing giving Santana two extra days of rest? The manager questioned himself after Friday's game. Writes columnist Bob Klapsich in the Record:

The best-case scenario is that Santana was a victim of nothing more than the law of averages: He was due for a stinker after the no-hitter, which was preceded by a complete-game shutout of the Padres. With a streak of 18 consecutive scoreless innings, it figured that Santana would finally return to the race of men. But the darker possibility is that Santana’s surgically repaired arm was at least drained and maybe injured after back-to-back complete games. If it’s a health-related issue, the real concern is how long it’ll take to Santana to bounce back and whether he’ll regain the magic in his change-up.

Writes columnist John Harper in the Daily News:

So while taking a beat-down from the crosstown Yankees obviously stings, the Mets can at least take some consolation in the fact that Santana apparently survived the 134 pitches without any long-term effect. At least that’s what he was insisting afterward, noting that his fastball velocity was normal (88 to 90 on the radar gun), while saying that he felt strong on the mound. “I just left some pitches up,” he said. “My changeup wasn’t as sharp as I wanted it to be. You can call that rust or what you want. I just didn’t execute some of my pitches, and the rest is history.’’

Wrote columnist Mike Vaccaro in the Post:

(Read full post)



Bartolo Colon
15 4.09 151 202
BAD. Murphy .289
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187