The Mets hit three homers but the three New York pitchers were stung for seven two-out RBI in an 8-4 loss to the Twins in Minnesota on Saturday.
Here are the takeaways…
- Brandon Nimmo snapped out of an 0-for-8 slide by taking the third pitch of the game deep to the opposite field in left, just sneaking the ball past a leaping Jordan Luplow in left field. Jeff McNeil plopped the ball into left to follow with a single and with two outs he got a great jump off the Twins' veteran starter Kenta Maeda to steal second and get in scoring position for Daniel Vogelbach who delivered a two-out RBI single up the middle to give the Mets a 2-0 lead in the first.
- David Peterson got the start for the Mets and struggled with his command in the early going, hitting leadoff batter Donovan Solano before Jorge Polanco singled to put two men on. The lefty found his release point on his offspeed pitches getting Royce Lewis swinging on a good slider in the dirt, Carlos Correa looking at a fastball and Luplow swinging through an 0-2 slider to end the threat.
Peterson got two strikeouts in the second sandwiching an infield single. But Willi Castro's double and Solano's two-out, two-run single tied the game at 2-2.
In the third, Peterson needed just two pitches to get the first two outs, but Luplow laced one down the right field line and hustled into second with a double on a head-first slide before scoring on a bloop single to center by Kyle Farmer. It was Minnesota's third two-out RBI of the day.
Peterson rebounded with a 10-pitch fourth with two strikeouts and a nine-pitch fifth with a strikeout. But with one out in the sixth, Luplow dropped a 55-foot infield single down the third-base line before Farmer roped a single to left-center to put runners on the corners. Peterson would manage to escape the inning with no damage thanks to a big second out when Ryan Jeffers missed the ball on a safety squeeze attempt allowing catcher Omar Narvaez to toss the ball to Brett Baty to tag Luplow who had drifted too far off the bag.
Overall, Peterson was effective despite allowing a lot of traffic on the bases. His slider, which had been his best pitch last season, got three whiffs on 13 pitches. But 43 percent of his 40 fastballs resulted in a whiff or called strike. His final line: six innings, eight hits, three runs with one walk and eight strikeouts on 96 pitches (64 strikes).
- The Twins blew the game open in the seventh inning with, yes, two outs. Drew Smith walked two around a single before Max Kepler hit a hanging curveball for a pinch-hit three-run triple high off the tall right field wall. Farmer greeted Jeff Brigham with an RBI double to right on a checked swing, for Minnesota's seventh two-out RBI of the day.
- With two outs in the third, Pete Alonso got plunked on the upper arm by a 91 mph fastball in his second time up, the 18th time he has been hit on the season. Francisco Lindor followed with a shot down the line at first that just squeaked off Solano’s glove at first base to give the Mets runners at the corners for Vogelbach. But a 358-foot flyout to center ended the inning.
After that, the Mets got just two more base runners off Maeda, a Ronny Mauricio single in the fourth and a Vogelbach walk in the sixth, before Twins manager Rocco Baldelli hooked the 35-year-old after 5.1 innings (and just 83 pitches). Lefty Kody Funderburk got lefty DJ Stewart, who was back in the lineup after missing a few games with soreness, swinging before walking Mauricio to give the Mets another chance for a two-out RBI. But Baty’s soft grounder to first left two on base.
- Alonso provided a little consolation with a 427-foot moonshot solo homer to left in the eighth. Two batters later, Stewart continued his magical run with a 428-foot homer to right center. For Alonso it was homer No. 43 of the season, for Stewart it was his 10th in his last 17 games.
New York left six on base and went 1-for-3 with runners in scoring position. Minnesota also left six on base but went 4-for-9 with RISP.
- Castro clobbered a home run off the facade of the second deck in right center with one out in the eighth, the only run Minnesota scored in the game with less than two outs, to give the game its 8-4 final score.
-After the first inning, Peterson had his hands and glove inspected by home plate umpire Ron Kulpa, as is customary. But after the inspection was complete, Kulpa went over and spoke to the Mets’ dugout before Peterson and pitching coach Jeremy Hefner, carrying the pitcher’s gray glove, headed into the clubhouse. Peterson emerged for the bottom of the second with an all-black glove. Perhaps the gray of the original glove was too close to the Mets’ gray away jersey.
- Narvaez and Francisco Alvarez (who entered the game in the seventh) both threw out a Minnesota base runner attempting to steal second.
The Mets and Twins return to conclude the series on Sunday with first pitch scheduled for 2:10 p.m. on SNY.