Final Recap: Mets 7 – Cardinals 4

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The New York Mets (63-62) defeated the St. Louis Cardinals (66-58) tonight in their series opener by the final score of 7-4. For a full boxscore recap follow the link below…

http://m.mlb.com/gameday/mets-vs-cardinals/2016/08/23/448740?#game=448740,game_state=final,game_tab=box

Game Notes:

  • Jon Niese only lasted 0.1 of an inning before departing with a knee injury. He allowed 3 runs on 1 hit with 2 walks.
  • Robert Gsellman picked up his first career win while relieving Niese by pitching 3.2 scoreless innings of relief while allowing only 2 hits and 2 strikeouts with 3 walks.
  • Wilmer Flores was 1-3 with a 3-run HR.
  • Justin Ruggiano was 1-3 with a mammoth 461 ft. solo HR (The longest Mets HR in the Statcast era).
  • Asdrubal Cabrera was 3-5 with an RBI double.
  • Jose Reyes was 3-4 with a walk, a stolen base, and an RBI single.

What a difference in swagger the Mets have played with since the return of Yoenis Cespedes. The team is 3-1 in the four games he’s played in since returning from the disabled list, and it’s evident that this team relies on his presence for success. While Cespedes bat had been carrying the Mets over the last couple of games, his glove was the highlight tonight as he made an outstanding catch to rob Stephen Piscotty of a home run in the bottom of the sixth inning. The Mets understand that this is their biggest series of the season to this point, and they came out tonight playing the way we haven’t seen in some time. With tonight’s victory the Mets now sit 3.5 games behind the Cardinals for the final Wild Card spot. There is still plenty of work to do over the next two days, but the offense looks totally revitalized with the presence of their team leader in Cespedes. 

There is not much to say on the Jon Niese front as he appeared to come into tonight’s start injured and didn’t last more than a third of an inning after looking shaky early. Regardless whether the knee injury had any affect on his performance tonight, I’d rather the Mets put Niese back into the bullpen, as he has just not cut it as a starter this season for either the Pirates or the Mets. Robert Gsellman came into tonight in his MLB debut and despite allowing Niese’s inherited runners to score, he shut the Cardinals down to set the tone for the Mets for the rest of the game. Gsellman’s effort was part of the Mets bullpen having a huge night and throwing 8.2 innings of one-run ball the rest of the way. It is appears from Terry Collins postgame comments that Gsellman will get the start in Philadelphia on Sunday which is well deserved after the way he pitched tonight. I would also expect Niese to hit the disabled list at this point as he’s been dealing with knee discomfort for sometime now, and it doesn’t make sense to play shorthanded in the bullpen, especially after the Mets used six pitchers in relief tonight. 

  • The newly energized Mets will take on the St. Louis Cardinals in the second game of their three game series tomorrow night with first pitch scheduled for 8:15 pm et. You can catch tomorrow’s game on SNY.
  • Jacob deGrom (7-6, 2.73 ERA) will look to bounce back from his last start and toe the rubber against Cardinals ace Carlos Martinez (11-7, 3.24 ERA).

 

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