Scuffling Mets need to 'figure out a way to win'

May 5th, 2019

MILWAUKEE -- Six runs in three games were not enough to produce a victory in the series.

The Mets couldn’t erase an early three-run deficit and dropped a 3-2 decision on Sunday as the Brewers completed their first three-game sweep of New York since May 12-14, 2007 at Miller Park.

“We haven’t been swinging the bats well and we’ve run into some good pitching,” manager Mickey Callaway said. “But, we’ve still got to figure out a way to win. That’s what this game is all about, figuring it out, no matter what. If you have to win 3-2, you have to win, 3-2. So we definitely need to do a better job in that regard, just figuring out a way to win that night.”

New York has scored seven runs in its last five games. The only victory during that stretch came on Thursday when Noah Syndergaard hit a solo homer to back his four-hit shutout in a 1-0 win against Cincinnati, one day after being blanked 1-0 by the Reds.

The Mets lost the first two games at Milwaukee, 3-1 and 4-3. On Saturday, the Brewers scored twice in the bottom of the 18th inning to come from behind for the victory. The Mets finished 1-5 against the Brewers this season and have dropped 11 of their last 12 at Miller Park.

On Sunday, the Mets fell behind 3-0 in the third, but they pulled within 3-2 on runs in the fifth and seventh.

In the fifth, Keon Broxton opened with a ground-rule double to center and scored on Tomas Nido’s two-out single to left. Pinch-hitter Michael Conforto walked, but the rally stalled when Adeiny Hechavarria’s hard-hit ball ricocheted off the glove of third baseman Travis Shaw directly to shortstop Orlando Arcia, who fired to first in time for the out.

“That’s what happens when it gets bad like this,” Callaway said. “No matter what you do, you put a good at-bat together and somebody makes a great play. That’s how this game goes. It’s that way pitching, it’s that way baserunning, it’s just part of the game. Like I said before, we have to figure it out. We have to figure out a way to win the game that night and we haven’t been doing that.”

Juan Lagares brought the Mets within a run in the seventh with a two-out solo homer to right, his second of the season.

Zach Davies, who was 0-2 with a 9.72 ERA in two starts last season against the Mets, limited them to two runs on six hits in 7 2/3 innings. Matt Albers struck out Amed Rosario to end the eighth.

Hard-throwing closer Josh Hader, the only reliever not used in Saturday’s marathon after a two-inning save the previous night, struck out the side in the ninth.

Defensive lapse

The Brewers’ three runs in the third all were earned, but the Mets certainly helped. After Manny Pina's leadoff double to the gap in left-center, Broxton -- making only his second start of the season in right -- misplayed Arcia's line drive into a double, sending Pina to third.

“He just misplayed it,” Callaway said. “He kind of got turned around. A line drive right at you that you’re not sure if it’s going to sink or carry, and it just sailed over his head.”

Pina scored on Lorenzo Cain's sacrifice fly to left, but Arcia was caught too far off second on the throw in to third base. Instead of a possible inning-ending out, though, Arcia was able to dive safely back into second ahead of the throw from third baseman Todd Frazier.

The Brewers capitalized when Christian Yelich followed with his 15th homer for a 3-0 lead.

“The Arcia ball was the big play in the inning when it got over Keon’s head,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “It made sure Christian got up there. Lo had a great at-bat just to kind of battle and get the sac fly. Christian unloaded on one.”

Cain’s catch

With one aboard in the sixth, Cain made a sensational running catch in right-center to haul in Pete Alonso’s drive for the second out.

“I've seen him make some pretty miraculous plays on ESPN,” Alonso said. “I thought I had a pretty good chance because he may have missed it or something, but it was just an unbelievable play, an unbelievable play."

Counsell said Cain’s catch came at a critical point with the Brewers nursing a 3-1 lead.

“That probably was the play of the game,” Counsell said. “That puts Zach in a bunch of trouble if we don’t make a play there. I thought to myself, he was upset that he didn’t catch Keon’s first ball earlier in the game. He just said, ‘I’m going to catch that for sure.’ He hit the wall really hard. Knocked the wind out of himself a little bit. Incredible catch. Full speed. There’s no slowing down. He protected himself just enough by turning a little bit.”