NEW YORK -- On another night, had the winds of fate blown differently, Jacob deGrom might have approached history. As it was, deGrom settled for mere shades of immortality on Friday, his 12-strikeout performance capping a standout month for the Mets' healthiest pitcher.
Delivering seven innings of one-run ball in a 2-1 win over the Phillies, deGrom improved to 4-0 with a 0.84 ERA, 31 strikeouts and eight walks over his last four starts. He has been the primary engine behind the Mets' current run of six wins in seven games, allowing them to recover from a four-game sweep last week in Los Angeles.
"I think going into L.A. and getting our teeth kicked in was kind of a wakeup call -- let's go," deGrom said. "If we're gonna do it, we're running out of time. I think everybody is on the same page. We know we got a good team. It's just a matter of going out there and playing."
Were it not for Curtis Granderson's misplay of a routine fly ball in the fifth inning, deGrom would have prompted thousands of nervous shuffles and fidgets, descending into the later innings at Citi Field with a no-hitter intact. He instead allowed three hits -- including Nick Williams' first career knock -- over seven innings, whiffing 12 to achieve his career-high sixth double-digit strikeout game of the season.
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"He's in a groove for sure," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "I didn't think tonight was his best command, but yet he's such a competitor."
Phillies rookie starter Ben Lively was also stout, limiting the Mets to RBI singles by Granderson and Travis d'Arnaud over 6 1/3 innings. But Lively fell to 1-3 despite a 3.72 ERA.
"I had no idea at the beginning of the game," Lively said, referring to walking four batters in the first two innings. "I felt like I was delivering the ball good, and it was just getting away from me. I'm just glad I figured it out. It could have been way worse."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Not your typical triple: The late-summer light at Citi Field was fading when Knapp lifted a routine fly ball to center field with two outs in the fifth inning. Granderson camped under where he thought the ball was headed, realizing only too late that Knapp's drive was carrying over his head. By the time Granderson recovered, the ball was on the grass, giving the Phillies their first hit. Moments later, they had their only run on a Ty Kelly RBI single.
Statcast™ estimated that Granderson's catch probability on the play was 99 percent.
"I didn't see it," Granderson said. "I've got nothing else to say. You can't catch what you can't see." More >
Also not your typical triple: When Jose Reyes lifted a one-out drive to center field in the fourth inning, Odubel Herrera raced after it, gloving the ball just as he crashed into the fence. The ball popped out, allowing Reyes to race to third base, and score on an ensuing d'Arnaud single.
"It was a tough play," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "That wall comes into play. I've seen him make great catches before. He just didn't make that play. I can't fault him for that. It was close."
"It's good to get the first hit out of the way, but honestly, I liked my second AB better because I laid off some tough pitches. It wasn't a hit, but I hit the ball pretty good and nearly beat him." -- Williams, on his hit in the seventh inning and lining out to center field in the fifth
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
deGrom has allowed one run or fewer in 42 of his first 92 starts, matching Dwight Gooden for the most to begin a Major League career since 1913.
FROM THE TRAINER'S ROOM
Mets outfielder Michael Conforto sat out his fourth consecutive game due to a badly bruised left hand, undergoing a third round of medical tests earlier in the day. There is a chance the Mets place him on the 10-day disabled list before Saturday's game.
First baseman Lucas Duda was also a late scratch due to flu-like symptoms.
Phillies: Right-hander Jeremy Hellickson (5-5, 4.40 ERA) is auditioning for contenders everywhere in Saturday afternoon's game against the Mets at Citi Field. Hellickson is a free agent after the season and he figures to be traded. He has allowed nine hits, two runs, two walks and has struck out 11 in 13 innings in his last two starts.
Mets:Zack Wheeler (3-5, 5.29 ERA) will return from the disabled list Saturday after missing just one start due to right biceps tendinitis. Wheeler, who gave up 15 runs in his last two outings prior to going on the DL, threw a pair of bullpen sessions this week without issue.
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