The Mets put up 10 hits and 5 runs against the Cubs today. They hit back-to-back home runs (3 total in the game) for the second time in the series and had Jonathan Niese on the mound. All of that sounds like the perfect recipe to end the current three game losing streak, right? Well, typically that would have been the case, but since when do the Mets play typical, sound baseball? They have been out of sync now for the last three weeks and the injuries are really wearing on the entire team. When they pitch well they don’t hit. When they hit well (which is rare) they don’t get the pitching. While this is just a slump, it is concerning and needs to be remedied sooner than later.
Jonathan Niese (3-3) fell apart in the 5th inning when Flores made an error behind him in the field. Niese has been let down by his fielders all season as they have now committed 10 errors with him on the mound. That being said, Niese can’t get out of his own way and stop fires from spreading when bad things happen in his outings and this has been his M.O. throughout his whole career. In total, Niese pitched 6.1 innings, gave up 6 hits and 6 runs (4 earned), while walking 1 and striking out 2. He ends the outing with an ERA of 2.49.
The Mets displayed some power in this game and in the series overall, but when nobody is on base the home runs are much more tolerable by the opposition. Despite all of Flores’s errors, he now leads the team with 5 home runs and is on pace for a 20 home run season.
The Mets fielding is just terrible overall. Yes Murphy and Flores have errors in numbers but the overall sloppy play all around the field is what’s killing this team. The passed ball by Recker cost the team today’s game and there have been many unturned double plays that have taken a toll on the pitchers on a regular basis. To me, fielding issues are much more difficult to address and fix when compared to the hitting woes. These players have hit in the past and you don’t just forget how to hit a baseball because you go through a rough patch, but poor fielding by below average fielders is something that can’t be fixed overnight or even over a season.