Brandon Nimmo breaks down ninth-inning stolen base attempt, Mets' recent offensive woes
Heading into the ninth inning on Thursday afternoon in Detroit, the Mets had just two hits and were staring down the barrel of a three-game sweep by the Tigers. But with one out, Brandon Nimmo lined a single to left field to give New York a chance for some late-inning magic.
However, with Starling Marte at the plate and the Mets down 2-0, Nimmo broke for second base in an attempt to swipe the bag and was thrown out by Jake Rogers, extinguishing any kind of comeback.
“The closer is a 1.55 (seconds to home plate) on average and I was thinking it was a tough matchup for Starling and I don’t want a ground-ball double play here, but I also don’t wanna get thrown out,” Nimmo explained. “But on a 1.55, I’m thinking I should be there pretty much every time. That’s what I was thinking in my head. Ten out of 10 times I should be there, even on a bad jump.
“It was also a guy who likes to throw a lot of curveballs and it was a curveball count – he had just thrown a couple of fastballs in a row – so anyways, I made the decision. It was mine alone and it obviously didn’t work out.”
Marte struck out two pitches later and New York left the Motor City without a win – scoring just one run over its last 22 innings – and are now 16-16 after losing nine of their last 11 games.
During that stretch, the offense, one that was so consistent last year, hasn’t been able to find its footing in the early going this season and is averaging a collective .238 – second worst in the National League.
With their shutout loss on Thursday, the Mets have now been shut out six times this season.
“It’s obviously not good," Nimmo said. "But if there’s any benefit to this team we’ve got a lot of veteran guys who have been through a lot of stuff before and understand that teams that have been in this position before who have not done as great as they would like in the first couple of months – Max (Scherzer) was on that Nationals team that did not do very well but turned things around.
“The Braves were not in the greatest position last year and obviously caught us at the end, so it’s about being constant and trying not to ride the ups and downs, just keep the work going and trusting the process that you’re gonna come back around and you’re gonna start playing well as a team again.”
The Mets won’t have much time to try to make that happen as the team has a quick turnaround on Friday night, hosting the Colorado Rockies at Citi Field for a three-game series.
Perhaps that’s the perfect tonic for New York as the Rockies entered play on Thursday with a 5.11 ERA – second worst in the National League. After Colorado, New York will hit the road once again to play the Cincinnati Reds and Washington Nationals. If the offensive woes aren’t fixed by then, it will start to feel eerily similar as last year’s September collapse.
As for Nimmo, asked if he’ll consider trying to steal in a similar position going forward, he seemed to have his doubts.
“Now there’s a second thought in my head,” he said. “Now there’s obviously that ‘well I have been thrown out the one time’ so I don’t know. I guess we’ll have to leave that for another time, but it’s probably not a good chance of it in the near future.”