Granderson, deGrom lead Mets past Orioles
BALTIMORE -- Curtis Granderson homered twice and Jacob deGrom was dominant as the Mets ran their winning streak against the Orioles to nine games with Tuesday's 5-3 series-opening victory at Camden Yards.
After a 46-minute weather delay to start the game, Granderson hit a leadoff homer off O's starter Kevin Gausman and struck again in the fifth inning to give him 16 RBIs already in August and a team-leading 22 home runs. Granderson was joined by Daniel Murphy, who doubled in a run in the third, on backing deGrom's terrific 7 2/3 innings. New York's right-hander held the Orioles to one run, Gerardo Parra's homer, on five hits and struck out six.
"He's one of the best in the game right now," Mets manager Terry Collins said of deGrom. "No question. I've talked to many other managers and he is one of the first guys they ask about."
Gausman turned in his fourth quality start in five games, going six innings and surrendering three runs, but took the loss. Reliever Mychal Givens was charged with two runs in the ninth, one of which was earned, on a Murphy sac fly and a wild pitch that scored Wilmer Flores.
Those runs would come back to hurt the O's as they would rally in the ninth, working two bases-loaded walks with two outs against Mets closer Jeurys Familia, before coming up short when Manny Machado grounded out to third to end the game.
"They have [Noah] Syndergaard tomorrow. That's why they're in first place. They run out five above-average starters," O's manager Buck Showalter said of the tough task in rebounding from Tuesday's loss. "If we're going to get where we want to go, we're going to have to earn it. Everybody will. That's why it's so rewarding if you can do it."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Granderson sets the tone: Two pitches into the game and the Mets had a 1-0 lead. Granderson took Gausman deep to right field for his seventh leadoff home run of the season, which is a Mets franchise record. He punished Gausman a second time in the fifth with a solo shot to center for his third multi-home run game of the season.
"I think they were both fastballs," Granderson said of his two homers. "He throws very hard and is able to elevate when he needs to, got a lot of strikeouts over the course of the game." More >
deGrom continues domination: deGrom allowed two runs or fewer for his seventh consecutive start as the right-hander saw his ERA drop to 1.98, the second best mark in the Majors. His only blemish on the night was Parra's solo homer to right in the sixth inning. deGrom was able to tame Chris Davis' hot bat as he was able to strike out the powerful lefty three times.
"I am down in the zone," deGrom said. "I try to get a lot of ground balls. I think that's helped me out. I am having a little more confidence than last year in all of my pitches." More >
O's run into key out: After J.J. Hardy delivered a two-out double in the fifth inning, the O's first extra-base hit off deGrom, Henry Urrutia followed with a bloop single. Hardy took off and rounded third base as left fielder Michael Conforto fielded the ball and fired home, easily nabbing the Orioles shortstop at home plate. The putout ended the inning, just as the lineup was about to turn over to Machado, quashing any hope of a potential rally.
"It's a full count there, two outs," Hardy said. "I got a pretty good jump there. I'm going when he starts swinging the bat. [Urrutia] hit it softly apparently, I didn't see the play, but I guess it was a one-hopper. And [Conforto] made a pretty good throw. [He has a] strong arm. I would have been really surprised if I got held up there. With two outs like that, you've got to try." More >
Parra's hot bat continues: After supplying the only run off deGrom, Parra came close to tying the game in the eighth inning. With Machado on, and facing reliever Tyler Clippard, Parra drilled a 2-1 pitch into deep right field. But Granderson made a leaping catch just in front of the scoreboard to end the inning.
"I wish we could get his numbers as a group up there [on the JumboTron]," Showalter said of Parra, who was acquired from Milwaukee at the non-waiver Trade Deadline. "Tells you what kind of a year he's having. He's a very competitive guy. He brings a lot of the table, more than one phase of the game. That's why we like him."
"September is going to be huge for us. Obviously, the rest of August is pretty big, too. I feel like every team we face now is going to be good. This time of year, it's going to be tough. We have a really good stretch here in the next two weeks going into September. We can put ourselves in a good spot." -- Gausman, on an Orioles team that opened a stretch of 22 of the next 25 games against teams .500 or better
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Granderson's leadoff home run was his seventh of the season, which is the most all-time in a single season by a Met.
SCHOOP'S ROUGH NIGHT
Orioles second baseman Jonathan Schoop had an uncharacteristic night in the field, committing two errors and dropping the relay throw in on Murphy's RBI double, which prevented him from even getting a throw off to the plate.
"We battled back, but there were some mistakes I made today and I've got to be better," Schoop said. "I've got to play better. [I had] some easy mistakes that I did today. I've got to be better for my teammates and better for myself."
Mets: Noah Syndergaard (7-6, 3.07 ERA) will be on the mound for New York's series finale against Baltimore at 7:05 p.m. ET on Wednesday. While the right-hander has been dominant at home this season, Syndergaard will try for his first road victory on the year. In eight road starts, he's posted a 0-5 record with a 5.01 ERA.
Orioles: Baltimore will send Ubaldo Jimenez to the mound to wrap up the quick two-game series against New York. Jimenez had a fantastic first half, but has been inconsistent as of late. He's 9-7 with a 3.92 ERA on the season.
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