New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz failed to protect a three-run lead on Wednesday. This should be just a blip on the radar, however.
The New York Mets had to feel pretty good about their chances for a second straight win on Wednesday. Leading 8-5 in the bottom of the ninth, they had their All-Star closer, Edwin Diaz, entering the game. Just three more outs and they would be guaranteed of at least a series split.
Unfortunately, things did not go according to plan. Diaz allowed back-to-back home runs to Joc Pederson and Max Muncy to allow Los Angeles to pull within one run, 8-7. Two batters later, Cody Bellinger doubled to score Justin Turner and the game was tied. The only out that Diaz was able to record came on Alex Verdugo’s walk-off sacrifice fly.
His final line was his worst as a Met: 0.1 innings pitched, five hits, four earned runs, one walk, and no strikeouts.
Despite this, there is no reason to panic with the 25-year-old. The Dodgers boast one of the best offenses in the National League and even the best closers have off nights.
In his first season in the NL, Diaz owns a 3.22 ERA and 1.30 WHIP with 13 saves in 25 appearances.
The next time Mickey Callaway has a ninth-inning lead to protect, he’ll have no hesitations about running Diaz back out there.
Just a blip on the radar.
Mets club four home runs on Wednesday
Although Wednesday’s loss was disheartening, there were positive takeaways as well. NL Rookie of the Year candidate Pete Alonso hit two home runs. Not to be outdone, Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith added back-to-back shots in the seventh.
This was the third multi-homer game of the year for Alonso. Now with 19 home runs on the year, he has tied Mark McGwire’s 1987 mark for most by a rookie prior to June 1.
Wednesday’s effort also gives the slugging first baseman 10 home runs in the month of May, a franchise rookie record for any month.
Noah Syndergaard flashing impressive endurance
He ultimately did not factor into the decision, but Noah Syndergaard turned in a quality start on Wednesday.
He limited the Dodgers to three runs over six innings, throwing 116 pitches in the process.
It was the fifth time in Syndergaard’s career he threw 115-plus pitches. His career-high is 118 against the Colorado Rockies in 2015. The 26-year-old has thrown at least 100 pitches in eight starts in 2019, trailing only Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer (10).