DYK? Cubs-Mets NLCS Game 2
The Mets scored three runs in the first inning and cruised to a 4-1 win over the Cubs on Sunday night at Citi Field, taking a 2-0 lead in the National League Championship Series.
The Cubs, who will return home to Wrigley Field for Tuesday's Game 3, are 6-13 all-time in NLCS games. On the other hand, the Mets find themselves two wins away from their first World Series trip since 2000.
Here are some notable facts and figures from Sunday's Game 2.
• The Championship Series moved to a best-of-seven format in 1985. From that year through 2014, 25 teams took a 2-0 series lead, and 22 of those advanced to the World Series. The exceptions are the 2004 Yankees (vs. Red Sox), 1985 Blue Jays (vs. Royals) and '85 Dodgers (vs. Cardinals).
• Daniel Murphy's two-run shot in the first inning off Jake Arrieta was his fifth homer of the postseason, giving him sole possession of the Mets' single-postseason record. It also ties Murphy for the franchise's career postseason record, shared by Mike Piazza, who played in 22 postseason games for New York, 15 more than Murphy.
• Murphy is the fifth player to homer in at least four straight games in a single postseason and the first since Evan Longoria for the Rays in 2008. Carlos Beltran is the only player to homer in five straight, for the '04 Astros. The others with four-game streaks are Juan Gonzalez (1996), and Jeffrey Leonard ('87). Beltran in '04 and Ken Griffey Jr. in '95 are the only players to go deep more times than Murphy within their first seven career postseason games.
• This postseason, Murphy has gone deep off Arrieta, Clayton Kershaw (twice) and Zack Greinke, likely the top three finishers in the NL Cy Young Award race, in some order. Each member of that trio ranked in the top seven in the Majors for fewest homers allowed per nine innings, with Arrieta first at 0.39. Jon Lester, the other pitcher to serve one up to Murphy this postseason, ranked 15th.
• The Mets scored three first-inning runs off Arrieta for the first time in his last 26 starts. According to ESPN, he hadn't surrendered a three-spot in the first since July 30, 2010, pitching for the Orioles against the Royals.
• Through the NL Wild Card Game, Arrieta had allowed four earned runs in 97 1/3 innings over a span of 13 starts. He now has given up four runs in consecutive outings. The only other time this year that Arrieta put together back-to-back non-quality starts was May 2-7.
• Arrieta gave up more earned runs than in his previous four starts against the Mets combined, since the beginning of 2014 (three).
• Before Sunday, Arrieta was 14-1 with a 1.49 ERA in 19 road starts this year, and the Cubs had won each of his last 15 starts overall. Their last loss with him on the mound came on July 25, when Cole Hamels threw a no-hitter for the Phillies.
• Rookie Noah Syndergaard became the third pitcher in Mets history to strike out at least nine batters in at least four straight starts, joining David Cone (three times) and Dwight Gooden (twice). Syndergaard also has racked up at least eight K's in six consecutive starts.
• Syndergaard, who turned 23 on Aug. 29, is the second-youngest pitcher to strike out at least nine in multiple postseason outings and the youngest to do so in the same postseason. The Braves' Steve Avery was 21 and 22 when he accomplished the feat in the 1991-92 postseasons. Gooden and Josh Beckett (four starts) are the only other pitchers with at least two such games before turning 24.
• The Mets' pitching staff struck out at least 10 batters for the sixth time in seven games this postseason. The record for a team in a single postseason is nine, by the Tigers in 2012 and '13.
• Over their past four games, since Game 4 of the NL Division Series against the Dodgers, the New York bullpen has thrown 11 2/3 scoreless innings.
• Mets closer Jeurys Familia picked up his fourth save this postseason, setting a franchise record. Billy Wagner and Armando Benitez both had three postseason saves in their Mets careers.
• Four of the Cubs' five hits came from leadoff man Dexter Fowler and No. 3 hitter Kris Bryant. The rest of the lineup went 1-for-25 with no walks and 10 strikeouts.
• All five of the Mets' hits came from the top four spots in their batting order. The rest of the lineup went 0-for-15 with no walks and nine strikeouts. Both team's five through nine spots combined to go 0-for-32 with no walks and 14 strikeouts.
• Bryant's first-inning single was his first hit in 15 at-bats on the road this postseason. Bryant hit just .243/.333/.360 with five homers in 75 road games during the regular season.
• When David Wright gave the Mets a 1-0 lead with an RBI double in the first inning, it broke his 16 at-bat hitless streak going back to Game 1 of the NLDS. Wright had been 1-for-19 in the postseason before going 1-for-4 Sunday.
• Mets leadoff man Curtis Granderson stole multiple bases in a game for the second time this year. He also did so during an 18-inning contest against the Cardinals on July 19. Before that, he hadn't swiped two bags in a game since July 18, 2011, for the Yankees. Granderson also picked up his first steal of third since '12.
• New York first baseman Lucas Duda went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and is now 2-for-21 with 13 strikeouts this postseason.