Cabrera (homer, 4 RBIs) lifts Mets

Veteran goes 3-for-5; Matz ties career high with 9 K's

July 26th, 2018

PITTSBURGH -- went into the All-Star break looking like a valuable asset with Tuesday's non-waiver Trade Deadline looming. He'd accumulated the most first-half RBIs in his career and the third-most home runs he'd ever hit in a single season. After a slow start to the second half, the veteran infielder appeared to increase his trade stock once again on Thursday.
Cabrera went 3-for-5 with a home run and produced a season-high four RBIs in the Mets' 12-6 win over the Pirates at PNC Park. The victory gives New York its first three-game winning streak since June 16-18.
The 32-year-old has experience being dealt right near the Trade Deadline. After spending the first 7 1/2 seasons of his MLB career with the Indians, he was traded to the Nationals on July 31, 2014, a few months prior to him becoming a free agent.

Now in his walk year once again, Cabrera isn't letting the uncertainty of his future with the organization negatively affect the on-the-field product.
"This is my team right now," Cabrera said. "I'm not thinking too much about it. I'm just coming here to do my job. This is my team. Whatever happens, I can't even control that. I just come here and do my best, trying to work to help the team."

Cabrera did just that in the second inning when he connected on an 0-2 curveball from right-hander and smoked an RBI double off the right-field wall, giving the Mets a 3-2 lead.
With the score tied at 4 in the fourth inning and on base following a leadoff single, Cabrera drove a hanging 83 mph changeup to right field for his 18th home run of the season. It was the 14th home run he'd hit while batting left-handed this year.

"He's such a good hitter, whether he's hitting right-handed or left-handed," Mets manger Mickey Callaway said of the switch-hitter. "He covers so many pitches. I think it's a byproduct of seeing more righties, and he's had a great year."
The Mets never trailed again. They extended their advantage to three runs later in the fourth inning and plated three more in the seventh inning and one in the eighth to open an 11-5 advantage. Cabrera led off the ninth with a double to right field and later scored New York's final run of the game on a Flores sacrifice fly.

Cabrera's offensive production helped provide support for left-hander , who tied his career-high strikeout total with nine on Thursday. The southpaw allowed four runs through his first 2 1/3 innings, but bounced back to retire the final 10 batters he faced.
"It definitely felt like I settled in," Matz said. "It was almost like I got a little tired, and I was able to just stay smooth instead of trying to muscle up a little bit. That worked for me. I think it helped me out."
Brain Freese: With the bases loaded and a two-run lead in the fourth inning, dribbled a shot down the left-field line. Freese corralled it and appeared to be heading toward third base to step on the bag for the final out of the inning. After taking a few steps, he instead fired to first base in an attempt to throw Mesoraco out. He made an errant throw, allowing to score from third and extending both the Mets' lead and the inning.

"All those little things are going to help you score more runs in the end because you have more baserunners. That's the one thing we've been missing is some consistent baserunners. That way, when you pop a homer, it's a couple of runs instead of one. And when you get base hits, maybe you get more runs because you have guys on." -- Callaway, on the Mets improving their ability to manufacture runs
Left-hander will make his return from the disabled list to start against the Pirates at PNC Park at 7:05 p.m. ET on Friday. It will be the southpaw's first start since June 19 due to a strained right calf injury. Right-hander will get the start for the Pirates.