I get that it’s the Mets. The Mets are really, really good this year, with really good pitching.
But none of these pitchers the Mets were putting on the mound are their top arms available, and yet the Phillies’ offense looked as anemic and meager as they have all year. It led to another embarrassing loss to the Mets, one in which the Phillies rolled over and showed their bellies early and often.
Zack Wheeler was on the mound, which meant they should have stood a decent chance. The issue there was that Wheeler wasn’t Wheeler, needing well over 100 pitches to make into the sixth inning, but he wasn’t able to get out of it. He was really quite fine for the first four innings, but against Trevor Williams of all people, the bats for the Phillies remained lifeless.
In the fifth inning, Jeff McNeil led off with a walk, but the big at bat was the following one to Tyler Naquin, who walked on four pitches. That seemed to throw Wheeler off a bit, who got the next out, but faced backup catcher Michael Perez, who laced a single into right, scoring both runners and giving the Mets a 2-0 lead.
Michael Perez opens up the scoring pic.twitter.com/TaycQlSWOJ— Brodes Media (@BrodesMedia) August 20, 2022
In the sixth inning, Wheeler walked Marte to lead off, then gave up a triple into the corner to Francisco Lindor, making it 3-0. After a walk to Daniel Vogelbach, McNeil hit a BABIP-gift single, scoring Lindor and making the score 4-0.
In the bottom of the sixth, a pulse was detected in the Phillies’ dugout. Nick Castellanos got his customary single, then went to third on a hustle double by Bryson Stott, mounting what some have called a “legitmate” threat to the Mets’ pitching. Jean Segura knocked in Castellanos with a sacrifice fly, but that meant there two outs. Garrett Stubbs couldn’t muscle a ball passed McNeil, meekly popping out and the threat was over.
The rest of the game was simply the Mets piling on to the soft underbelly of the bullpen, tallying four more runs before the bottom of the ninth. The Mets let in a run on some sloppy defense, but it was meaningless. The game was over and the Mets had their 13th victory in 17 tries this season.
This offense is becoming an issue, something that needs to get fixed soon. Is it simply everyone slumping at once? Is it the injuries mounting? Is this the August slog before the final playoff push? These answers need to get figured out soon.