This was the ugliest series the Mets have played all season. The Mets (24-21) lost their 7th straight road game overall as they were swept by the Pirates (21-22) by a final score of 9-1. The Mets are doused with injuries, but they are still a major league baseball team and they need to execute, which they haven’t done since April 30th. Injuries cannot be the excuse for the rest of the season, the 25 guys in the clubhouse need to find a way to get out of their own way and just get it done. Today’s lineup was borderline laughable with the absence of Duda and Lagares.
Jonathan Niese (3-5) didn’t have it again, for his third consecutive start (0-3, 5.1 innings per start, 9.00 ERA). He saw his ERA balloon to 4.08 on the season as he allowed 4 earned runs in 4.2 innings off of 7 hits, 4 walks and a home run. He did manage to strike out 6 Pirates. It is clear that Niese is mentally impacted by his defense when he is pitching. He needs to get that out of his head and just execute. If he is unable to execute, or unable to get out of his head, then he does not need to be in the rotation any longer. You would think at a time when Gee and Matz are knocking on the door he would step up, but Jonathan has done quite the opposite and I am all for a change of scenery if that is what truly would clear his head and let him get back that comfort level of being on a major league mound.
The Mets offense was downright pathetic in this series in Pittsburgh, but their pitching isn’t off the hook for this disaster either. The Mets scored 1.3 runs per game with a .211 average and 36 strike outs. The Mets offense in total, now has the 2nd most strikeouts in the league since April 30th. The Mets pitching in this series had a 7.13 ERA and when you see Harvey and Synergaard are going, you just don’t expect to see a number like that when all is said and done. Maybe it was just running into a Pirates team that was ready to erupt or maybe the Mets led to their eruption, but either way, the series is over and the team needs to put this behind them. They are going home to welcome in the Phillies and Marlins and need to beat up on the two teams that have no reason beating them, no matter how much their offense is currently struggling.