FLUSHING, NY- Similar to the nature of life, the game of baseball takes on a cyclical demeanor. Hot streaks give way to slumps. Demotions take the place of a call up Arrays of vast emotions create bewilderment and soul-searching. Success of the recent past feels fleeting, while doubt and questioning overcome subconscious thought.
The New York Mets entered Tuesday seeking to re-establish their recent dominating identity. A stretch of four runs scored in the past 27 innings, coupled with one victory in their last six games rendered the Mets powerless. A stretch of 18 consecutive inning without a run scored continued to dawn the club as they entered play on Tuesday. With Bud Norris (1-3, 9,75 ERA) slated to start for the Baltimore Orioles, the Mets had an auspicious matchup on the stat sheet, eventually translating to the standings with a 3-2 victory at Citi Field.
As the scoreless inning streak approached twenty, the Mets found themselves poised to crack the scoreboard in the bottom of the second inning against the struggling Norris. Successive singles by Michael Cuddyer and Daniel Murphy provided temporary hope, but a leaping snag at second base by Baltimore’s Jimmy Parades and by a double play off the bat of rookie Kevin Plawecki stopped the Mets in their tracks as the streak endured. The Mets returned the favor on the mound as Bartolo Colon fanned four Orioles looking in his first three innings of work. The Orioles would replicated the Mets second inning in the top half of the fourth, this time getting runners to second and third before the rally fizzled on a strikeout to Caleb Joseph and a ground out by Travis Snider keeping the game scoreless.
The cycle of life indicates a shift in the law of averages over time and the Mets exercised their previous misfortune in the bottom of the 4th with three extra base hits, resulting in three runs, capped off by a two run double from Kevin Pawlecki preceded by a run scoring single from Daniel Murphy, ending the scoreless drought at 21 innings. Colon allowed the lead to hold up for much of the evening, keeping his perfect record intact with 7.2 innings pitched and nine strikeouts. “You are seeing more breaking balls from him. It is just stay there until they adjust and has been remarkable”, manager Terry Collins said. Bud Norris settled down after a rough 4th inning, retiring the final eleven batters he faced, finishing with a quality start of seven innings with three runs allowed.
The Orioles would crack the scoreboard one out into the eighth inning on a solo home run by Manny Machado. Colon would leave one batter later to a collection of cheers from the hometown faithful. The Orioles would draw one last blow with a bases empty dinger by Chris Davis to greet closer Jeurys Familia in the 9th before the Mets secured the victory by a 3-2 margin. “The biggest growth in Jeurys Familia is the mental approach is so good”, Collins said. “He is going to attack the strike zone and gives up a home run to one of the best home run hitters in baseball, but he knows he has to go about his job and get the rest of the guys out”.
Having a short memory is a fundamental trait in the game of baseball. Though each game has the tendency to be connected, the present provides the necessities to correct errors, flaws, and losses. The New York Mets opened the season on a 15-5 tear headlined by a franchise tying mark of eleven consecutive victories. The best start since the World Series championship season of 1986 made any peak seem reachable. Any challenge equipped with fortitude and enduring promise. A series with the Marlins began to swing the pendulum in the opposite direction with the Mets entering their series against the Orioles hoping to erase a stretch of five losses in six attempts.
Like the common baseball adage, momentum turned out to be as good as the starting pitcher, as shown by the efforts of Bartolo Colon. The Baltimore Orioles can look to another day, seeking positives in contributions by Davis, Machado, along with gradual improvements Norris made as the game progressed. The O’s attempt to even the series will begin on Wednesday at Citi Field with Ubaldo Jimenez on the mound, while Mets will counter with Jacob deGrom. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM.