The phrase “a hush fell over the crowd” might be cliche and overdramatic, but when Shohei Ohtani comes up to bat, a hush literally does come over the crowd. That has certainly been the case this weekend at Citi Field.
But when the Los Angeles Angels two-way star stepped in for his first two at-bats Saturday night against Mets right-hander Carlos Carrasco, the silence might have signaled uncertainty or unease. It almost didn’t even seem fair that a veteran pitcher in the midst of the worst year of his career had to face a hitter like that.
The results were predictable as Carrasco was knocked out of the game in the second inning and the Mets fell to the Angels 5-3 to drop the series.
It was an eventful game for both teams. Pete Alonso was hit in the head right below his left ear by a pitch from right-hander Jose Soriano in the eighth inning and the benches cleared briefly.
“I’m not happy about it,” said manager Buck Showalter. “Not happy at all.”
Alonso stared down Soriano while Showalter came out from the dugout. While fans perceived his actions as an attempt to muzzle an upset Alonso, a visibly angry Showalter said he had safety in mind.
“My job is to keep a sense of reality and safety of everybody,” Showalter said. “But you want to make sure it’s reciprocated.”
The Mets have not reciprocated this season. Alonso, who tested negative for a concussion, has been beaned an NL-leading 17 times this season and the team has not retaliated. They don’t plan to unless they view it as intentional.
In this case, the Mets did not view it as such. Soriano threw a curveball high and inside and failed to control it.
“Last year we knew which ones were more malicious,” said shortstop Francisco Lindor. “This one was a curveball. I know 100% that it was not intentional. We’ve hit guys with breaking balls as well. I understand Pete’s reaction and I will always back him up. I stand by him.”
Soriano would ultimately hold the lead for the Halos (63-67).
In a scary moment, Angels starter Chase Silseth left the game in the fourth inning after getting hit in the head with a throw from first baseman Trey Cabbage.
Ohtani doubled off Carrasco (3-8) in the first inning and took a triple off him in the second. Carrasco allowed five earned runs on seven hits. All five runs came in the second inning.
It likely won’t be Carrasco’s final start in a Mets uniform but it will be one of them, as his 6.80 ERA on the season won’t entice them to re-sign the veteran next season. One could reasonably make the case to designate the 36-year-old for assignment, but the Mets are thin on pitching in the higher levels of the organization and they don’t have anyone in the bullpen they could move into the rotation. Triple-A options would be right-hander Denyi Reyes or Jose Butto, but they may not be much better.
Carrasco expects to pitch again next week.
“I’m not worried,” he said. “I just got out there every five days. I know today was really, really short and we used a lot of bullpen, but I’m trying to figure out what to do so I can move forward. It’s a little bit frustrating.”
It was an eventful game for both teams. Pete Alonso was hit in the head by a pitch from right-hander Jose Soriano in the eighth inning and the benches cleared briefly. He left the game and was replaced by Danny Mendick at first base and the Mets (59-71) briefly looked as though they would rally after DJ Stewart singled to put two on with one out. But Soriano retired the next two to hold the lead for the Halos (63-67).
In a scary moment, Angels starter Chase Silseth left the game in the fourth inning after getting hit in the head with a throw from first baseman Trey Cabbage. Things went awry when Francisco Lindor and Jeff McNeil pulled off a double steal, which resulted in Lindor coming home on Cabbage’s throw that went off Silseth and into left field. Still, the run counted and the Mets would plate one more in the inning.
Daniel Vogelbach hit his fifth homer of the month in the sixth off right-hander Dominic Leone, who was traded from the Mets to the Angels on Aug. 1. Lindor extended his hitting streak to 12 games with his fourth-inning leadoff single.
Ohtani went 2-for-3 with a double, a triple, two walks and two stolen bases. Fans hoping to see some magic in the ninth inning were left disappointed once again when he was intentionally walked in his final at-bat for the second night in a row.
There was no quiet as he walked to the plate for the final time. He bypassed the plate completely as the boos grew loud enough to be heard in Manhattan.
Source: Yahoo Sports