BINGHAMTON 9, ERIE 3: Jayce Boyd led the B-Mets with three RBIs and notched his fourth homer of the season. The B-Mets opened the scoring with a two-run third against
ST. LUCIE 5, LAKELAND 4 (10 innings): Lakeland’s Austin Green launched a game-tying solo homer against T.J. Chism with two outs and two strikes in the ninth, but the Mets
CHARLESTON 4, SAVANNAH 1: The Dogs scored a pair of first-inning runs against Savannah starter Robert Gsellman and never looked back. Mike Ford drove in the opening run with a double and eventually scored on second baseman Jorge Rivero's error. Charleston produced its third run, and the second unearned run against Gsellman, in the third on a fielding error by shortstop Yeixon Ruiz. The Gnats committed four errors in the game. Charleston completed its scoring with a bases-loaded walk in the fourth -- one of the four walks issued by Gsellman in four innings. The Gnats scored their lone run in the third as Champ Stuart plated Ruiz with a hard-hit single to third base. Matt Oberste extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a second-inning double. Box
BRISTOL 9, KINGSPORT 8: Bristol scored five first-inning runs and chased Andrew Church before he recorded an out in the second inning. Eudor Garcia went 2-for-3 with four RBIs in the loss. The K-Mets pulled within 9-8 with a two-run eighth, but they stranded the tying run in scoring position when pinch hitter Jean Rodriguez struck out. Box
CONNECTICUT 4, BROOKLYN 3: Josh Prevost issued a bases-loaded walk to Garrett Mattlage with two outs in the bottom of the ninth for the walk-off loss. Michael Bernal's RBI single had given Brooklyn a 1-0 lead in the first. An inning later, Jeff Diehl doubled, advanced on a wild pitch and scored ahead of a throw to the plate on Joe Tuschak's groundball for a 2-0 lead. Cyclones starter Octavio Acosta retired the first 10 batters. He eventually surrendered a sacrifice fly to Joey Pankake in the fourth. The Tigers tied the score at 2 against Acosta in the seventh on consecutive doubles from Ross Kivett and Pankake. Brooklyn regained the lead in the eighth. Jhoan Urena singled and advanced to second when left fielder Rashad Brown bobbled the ball. With one out, Bernal hit a soft groundball through the right side that seemed like it would be enough to score Urena, but right fielder Ben Verlander showed that his brother isn’t the only one in the family with a strong arm. He uncorked a laser throw to the plate to retire Urena and keep the score tied. Bernal did advance to second on the throw, though. After an intentional walk to Tyler Moore, Diehl produced a go-ahead RBI single.
The 3-2 lead would be short-lived. Cyclones reliever Brad Wieck struck out the first two batters he faced, but then walked two batters and uncorked a wild pitch that placed runners on the corners. Wieck then coaxed Pankake to hit a routine grounder to third. However, Urena bounced a throw to first base, allowing the tying run to score. The Cyclones seemed prime to take the lead back in the top of the ninth, placing runners on first and third with one out. But Urena and Michael Katz struck out. Prevost retired the first batter he faced in the bottom half, but then walked two and surrendered a single to load the bases with two outs for Mattlage, who leads the New York-Penn League in walks. Box
GCL NATIONALS 4, GCL METS 3
GCL NATIONALS 4, GCL METS 3: Jeremy Hefner tossed a perfect inning in the regularly scheduled game in his first game action since Tommy John surgery. The Nats then overcame a 3-0 deficit with a four-run eighth against Alex Durham and Dan Hermann. Taylor Teagarden went 0-for-1 with a walk as a DH and was replaced by a pinch runner. Meanwhile, in the resumption of Friday's game, which had been suspended with the score tied at 3, Brent McMinn's balk plated the tiebreaking run in the bottom of the sixth. Box 1, Box 2
Compiled with team reports
A half-inning before Eric Campbell delivered a tiebreaking RBI single in the eighth that lifted the Mets to a 5-4 win against the Marlins, Murphy leaped to snare a two-out line drive from Adeiny Hechavarria that stranded the potential go-ahead run in scoring position.
“You’re kind of at the mercy of your own athleticism there,” Murphy said. “And fortunately I had barely enough to get to the ball.”
Said Travis d'Arnaud: “I still can’t believe I saw that. He could dunk, I think, with how high he got.”
Murphy disputed d’Arnaud’s generous assessment of his leaping ability.
“No, not unless I had a chair there,” Murphy deadpanned about being able to dunk.
The All-Star Murphy remains due to get Sunday’s first-half finale off, Terry Collins reiterated postgame.
“He’s so pumped up, and he should be,” Collins said about representing the Mets on Tuesday in Minnesota. “That’s a tremendous tribute to one of the hardest-working players you’ll ever be around. And a big play for him, but he’s gassed.”
Young did shine in a big moment Saturday, though.
He launched a pinch-hit, game-tying two-run homer in the seventh inning against reliever Bryan Morris and the Mets went on to beat the Miami Marlins, 5-4, at Citi Field.
“Nobody cares about the past at that moment, especially myself,” Young said. “I don’t care about the game before, the at-bat before. It’s always about living in the moment and playing in the moment. If you’re able to do that for an entire season, normally at the end of the road that pot of gold is there and you’re able to look back and see yourself push through the downs and come back on top by the time the end of the year comes around.”
Even with Saturday’s homer, Young is still hitting .199 with eight homers and 25 RBIs in 206 at-bats.
“By the time it’s all said and done, I know that the belief in myself and what I feel like I bring to the table will show,” Young maintained. “I’ll be happy at the end of the season knowing that I put everything I had into this season and things turned around and got positive. And, next thing you know, you’re the guy that people want to go to in the big situation, hopefully. That’s always the goal.
“My philosophy has always been: When you’re going through some struggles, nobody wants to hear you pouting. Nobody wants to hear you be bitter. In the grand scheme of things, a bad attitude is not going to change your numbers. Whatever situation you’re in, if you come with a negative mindset, it’s not helping the situation. If anything, it’s hurting the situation.
“So you try to make the best out of every opportunity you’re given. You try to be a positive influence on the people that you’re surrounded with and continue to rub people the right way. It’s not just for baseball. It’s just for life as far as what makes a person’s character. That’s something I take very seriously and try to hold to.”
Getty ImagesWith Jon Niese poised to return from the DL, something has to give in the rotation between Daisuke Matsuzaka and Jacob deGrom.
The manager said he would need to discuss with Sandy Alderson on Sunday whether any innings restriction on Jacob deGrom would warrant the rookie opening the second half for a week or two in the bullpen, which would delay Matsuzaka's reassignment to relief.
The Mets will have an extra starter with Jonathon Niese due to return from the disabled list, so someone needs to be rerouted to the bullpen.
Alderson recently said deGrom should be able to pitch 185 innings this season without restriction. He’s currently at 105 between the majors and minors.
If deGrom pitches every five games for the remainder of the season, beginning with Sunday’s first-half finale, that’s 14 more starts in 2014. Eighty innings give him more than 5 2/3 innings per outing.
Collins said he is uninterested in pulling deGrom after five innings in starts to conserve innings with the Mets trying to win games. He’s either in games for as long as he’s productive, or his number of outings need to be curtailed, according to the manager.
“I don’t know, but it’s been talked about before that with all of those young guys we’re going to take a break this summer -- [Noah] Synderaard and [Rafael] Montero and deGrom -- and back off their innings a little bit,” Collins said. “That’ll be discussed tomorrow.”
Ultimately, though, Matsuzaka is going to pitch in relief soon, since it would only be a temporary bullpen stay anyway if it materialized for deGrom.
“Daisuke has done everything we’ve asked him to do. Everything,” Collins said after Matsuzaka allowed four runs in six innings in Saturday’s no-decision. “... We’re very, very lucky to have him on this club, no matter what happens next week.”
Said Matsuzaka through an interpreter: “I haven’t been told anything as of now. I’ll think about it when it happens, or if it happens.”
Campbell delivered a pinch-hit single against Mike Dunn in the eighth inning that plated Travis d’Arnaud with the go-ahead run as the Mets beat the Miami Marlins, 5-4, at Citi Field.
Campbell is now 6-for-12 as a pinch hitter this season. He has a nine-game hitting streak, during which he is hitting .455 (15-for-33).
“I saw a lot of pitches down in Miami, and a lot of pitches that at-bat,” Campbell said about his matchup against Dunn. “I had a pretty good idea of what his stuff does, so that helped.”
Campbell said he benefited in staying sharp for pinch-hitting duty when he was able to fill in for a week for David Wright, who was mending a left shoulder injury.
“It got my timing down,” Campbell said. “It got those little mechanical things in my swing down. It helps to get 25 to 30 at-bats in a row. It was unfortunate that David was hurt, but of course it helped me out a little bit.”
“We’ve had some big wins,” the manager said. “That might be the biggest win of the year for us -- for a lot of reasons. No. 1, we talked coming into the homestand about having a good homestand. And then Chris Young has really had a rough first half. To come through in a big way, it’s great for him. You know he’s a tremendous teammate. The guys only want him to have success. There were a lot of pieces to that win today. That’s why it’s big.”
Young’s pinch-hit two-run homer in the seventh pulled the Mets even at 4. Eric Campbell had a pinch-hit RBI single the following inning, to the delight of an atypically large crowd announced at 35,283.
The Mets withheld the attendance count until determining how many people came late for the Huey Lewis and The News postgame concert.
The Amazin’s are now 24-23 at home. They last had been above .500 at Citi Field on April 26, 2013 (7-6). They have won seven of nine on this homestand and remained seven games out of first place with Atlanta’s win at Wrigley Field.
“That’s what this town could be like if you’re having success,” Collins said about Saturday’s atmosphere at Citi Field. “And that’s what we’re hoping for when we come out of the break, that we’re playing well and people want to buy tickets to come see us, because we have not quit all year long. It’s a fun team to be around. It’s a fun team to watch play.”
Eric Campbell produced a two-out, pinch-hit single in the eighth against Mike Dunn that plated Travis d'Arnaud and the Mets beat the Miami Marlins, 5-4, on Saturday at Citi Field.
The Mets (44-50) twice overcame two-run deficits en route to their seventh win in nine games on the homestand. They climbed to six games under .500 for the first time since June 25.
In a pinch: Chris Young delivered a pinch-hit two-run homer in the seventh on the first pitch of reliever Bryan Morris' appearance as the Mets evened the score at 4. Morris had just inherited a two-run lead and a baserunner from starter Tom Koehler.
It was Young’s second career pinch-hit homer. The other came June 27, 2012 with Arizona at Atlanta against Jonny Venters.
The Mets’ last pinch-hit homer this season was produced by Lucas Duda on June 25 against Oakland.
All-Star leap: Daniel Murphy preserved a 4-all score in the eighth. The second baseman leaped and snared Adeiny Hechavarria's two-out liner against Vic Black to strand the potential go-ahead run in scoring position.
Pen-ultimately: Assuming Jonathon Niese successfully returns from the disabled list for the series opener in Seattle on July 21, which is the plan, this likely was Daisuke Matsuzaka's final start for a while.
In a 120-pitch effort, Matsuzaka had a better outing than his final line indicated (6 IP, 4 H, 4 ER). He had a career-high-matching 10 strikeouts -- a total he last had achieved three times in 2007 with Boston, back in his inaugural major league season.
Garrett Jones and Marcell Ozuna produced consecutive RBI doubles in the sixth against Matsuzaka as Miami took a 4-2 lead. Ozuna’s double was a line drive misread by Curtis Granderson, which resulted in it traveling over the right fielder’s head.
Déjà vu: The Mets pulled off their second suicide squeeze of the season … and second against the Marlins in three weeks. Ruben Tejada delivered a one-out bunt that plated hard-charging Kirk Nieuwenhuis and evened the score at 2 in the fifth.
The Mets also had successfully pulled off a suicide squeeze on June 22 at Miami, with Niese’s bunt plating Nieuwenhuis to open the scoring in the second inning of an eventual 11-5 win.
T.K. Oh! Koehler, a Stony Brook University product, held the Mets hitless until d’Arnaud’s leadoff single in the fifth. He ultimately allowed two runs that inning. He received a hard-luck no-decision despite limiting the Mets to two hits and departing with a 4-2 lead in the seventh.
Christian Yelich, who had raced to the wall to corral David Wright's fly ball in the fourth, had a misadventure on Nieuwenhuis’ fifth-inning fly ball to left field that carried well. Yelich drifted back, but the ball eluded him on the warning track.
After the catchable ball dropped for a double, the Mets had two in scoring position and none out. Juan Lagares followed with a run-scoring groundout. Tejada’s suicide squeeze then evened the score at 2.
Koehler departed after a one-out walk to Tejada in the seventh and Morris gave up the two-run lead.
What’s next: Jacob deGrom (2-5, 3.38 ERA) opposes left-hander Brad Hand (0-1, 5.09) at 1:10 p.m. Sunday in the final game before the All-Star break. Murphy is due for a day off, with Campbell playing second base.
Alvarez will replace injured Washington pitcher Jordan Zimmermann for Tuesday night's All-Star game at Target Field in Minnesota.
Zimmermann left Friday night's start against Philadelphia after 3⅓ innings because of a right biceps injury. The roster change was announced Saturday.
Rodney will take the spot of Tampa Bay lefty David Price. Because of an illness, Price was pushed back in the Rays' rotation to start Sunday, making him ineligible for the game.
Alvarez, a first-time All-Star, is 6-4 with a 2.63 ERA and three shutouts in 19 starts. He pitched a no-hitter against Detroit on the final day of the 2013 regular season.
"I'm happy. I'm excited to receive the news today," Alvarez said through a translator at Citi Field, where the Marlins played the New York Mets. "It's very emotional for me. ... At first when they announced the All-Star roster, I was a little bit disappointed."
The 24-year-old Alvarez has been Miami's top starter since 2013 NL Rookie of the Year Jose Fernandez went down with a season-ending elbow injury in May.
Right-hander Noah Syndergaard and catcher Kevin Plawecki will represent the Mets in the prospect showcase, both playing for the U.S. team.
Plawecki, a supplemental first-round pick out of Purdue in 2012, hit .326 with six homers and 43 RBIs in 224 at-bats with Double-A Binghamton to open the season. That earned the 23-year-old catcher a promotion to Vegas, where he has a .214 average (6-for-42) with two homers and 10 RBIs so far.
“No. 1, I think he’s going to be an outstanding offensive player,” Terry Collins said. “He’s really got a good swing. He’s going to have some power. They all talk about that this guy can really hit. I talked to [Binghamton manager] Pedro [Lopez] about him earlier in the year. I talked to [Vegas manager] Wally [Backman] the other day. Even though he got off to a little bit of a slow start, Wally said he’s actually hit the ball pretty good in Vegas, but nothing to show for it yet because they’ve been catching the ball. But he said he can really hit.
“That’s why he’s there. When you’ve got another guy coming up the chain who can be a dynamic catcher, it’s going to make you that much better.”
Syndergaard’s season obviously has been disappointing. With the Super 2 deadline having long passed, there’s no hint of the top prospect getting a call-up to the majors anytime soon, if at all this season.
Still, Collins suggested Syndergaard’s last outing was encouraging. He allowed one run on six hits in seven innings at Albuquerque on Sunday. Syndergaard struck out eight and did not issue a walk.
Syndergaard tossed a scoreless inning in last year's Futures Game at Citi Field.
“I think a lot of it has to do with he’s 20 years old and playing in a league where mistakes can hurt you,” Collins said. “But the other day he stepped up. And Wally said that’s the best he’s thrown all year. So maybe he’s turning the corner.”
Asked if Syndergaard had been too reliant on his fastball this season, Collins added: “I’ve heard the same thing about Matt Harvey, I’ve heard the same thing about Zack Wheeler when they were in Triple-A. There’s a growing period that you’ve got to go through, especially in that Pacific Coast League. Here’s a guy that can throw 98, 99 mph, but they’re still getting hits, where the year before they didn’t. I think it’s just something you have to learn to get through.”
Getty ImagesThe Mets plan to open the second half using Bartolo Colon, Dillon Gee and Zack Wheeler in San Diego.
The rest of the rotation is not yet public, but a source told ESPNNewYork.com that Dillon Gee is likely to face the Padres on Saturday, followed by Zack Wheeler in Sunday's series finale.
Jonathon Niese and Jacob deGrom then would open the following series at Seattle, with Daisuke Matsuzaka likely beginning the second half in the bullpen if everything progresses as planned.
Gee returned from the disabled list Wednesday and limited the Braves to one run in seven innings. He plans to throw 75 pitches or so during the break while spending time in California with teammates, setting himself up to face the Padres in Game 2.
Niese is eligible to come off the DL the following day, but the Mets instead plan to use Wheeler that day. The Mets appear to prefer holding Niese back an extra day to have him face the Mariners, who have challenging lefty batters, including imported Robinson Cano.
Of course, all this presumes that Niese feels OK to make that start. The southpaw is expected to throw at Citi Field on Sunday to test himself. Niese officially was placed on the DL with a left shoulder strain, although he maintained he was uninjured. Niese has acknowledged an MRI on Monday revealed inflammation in the AC joint. His velocity has been down this season.
Assuming Niese returns after missing only the one first-half start, that means Matsuzaka should find himself relocated to the bullpen. He performed well in a relief role earlier this season, posting a 2.22 ERA and .145 opponent batting average in 17 appearances, albeit with 19 walks in 24 1/3 innings.
DeGrom remaining in the rotation with Niese's return validates how positively the rookie has pitched. It also signals the Mets are unconcerned with his innings count for the season. DeGrom is at 105 innings between the majors and minors in 2014. The Mets are comfortable with him getting to 185 innings this season.
Harvey certainly now seems to have accepted that he will not pitch in a game in 2014, as the rehab process continued to be slowed. In fact, despite recent rumblings that he may get on a mound right after the All-Star break, Harvey said that is not the case -- it will be farther down the road.
Harvey is not slouching, though. He plans to spend the All-Star break working out in Orange County, Calif., at the Scott Boras Training Institute. Boras' people encouraged the business trip so they can get a firsthand handle on his progress.
Collins indicated Eric Campbell is expected to start over Murphy in the first-half finale, when the Mets are facing left-hander Brad Hand.
Campbell is hitting .341 against left-handed pitching as a major leaguer, with a .391 on-base percentage.
It would mark Campbell's first major league appearance at second base. Typically a corner infielder and outfielder, Campbell has appeared in 15 career minor-league games at second base, including 13 this season with Las Vegas.
Murphy has started all but three games this season at second base for the Mets. Wilmer Flores had two starts and Eric Young Jr. had one start at the position.
Curtis Granderson, rf
Daniel Murphy, 2b
David Wright, 3b
Lucas Duda, 1b
Travis d’Arnaud, c
Kirk Nieuwenhuis, lf
Juan Lagares, cf
Ruben Tejada, ss
Daisuke Matsuzaka, rhp
Christian Yelich, lf
Donovan Solano, 2b
Giancarlo Stanton, rf
Casey McGehee, 3b
Garrett Jones, 1b
Marcell Ozuna, cf
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, c
Adeiny Hechavarria, ss
Tom Koehler, rhp
That signals the Mets may need to make a decision out of the All-Star break about which catcher to keep at the major league level. Anthony Recker has an option remaining. Teagarden is out of options, so he would need to clear waivers and, even then, also would need to accept an assignment to Triple-A.
Teagarden, 30, hit .143 (4-for-28) with one homer, five RBIs and two walks in nine major league games this season before landing on the DL.