Five things to know from Saturday’s game
1. Taijuan Walker, outside of a five-run second inning, was strong for the Mets. He bounced back from his problematic frame, in which Walker gave up home runs to Kyle Higashioka and Aaron Judge, the RHP settled down with a dominant final four. In six innings, Walker yielded five runs on six hits (three home runs) while striking out eight and walking one.
2. Speaking of McCann, who entered slashing .237/.299/.351 with nine home runs and 37 RBI in 104 games, he had his pitcher’s back. Initially, McCann delivered an RBI triple that scored CF Kevin Pillar from second and cut the Yankees’ third-inning lead to 5-2. With the Yankees clinging to a 5-4 edge in the sixth inning, McCann stepped up again and ripped a two-run homer down the left-field line off reliever Chad Green that put the Mets ahead 6-5.
3. From the plate to the bases, Javier Báez‘s play proved pivotal. After Walker’s five-run second inning, Báez worked a leadoff walk against Yankees starter Corey Kluber and stole second. The Mets cashed in two batters later on Pillar’s RBI double. Before McCann’s blast, Báez bridged the gap a bit more with a two-out solo home run in the third inning, narrowing the Yankees’ lead to 5-4.
Báez’s hustle surfaced again in the seventh, legging out a two-out infield single that kept the inning alive as LF Jeff McNeil lofted a blooper into shallow center and Báez wheeled to third. Pillar then ripped a single into left to drive Báez 90 feet in, tacking on another insurance run as the Mets led 7-5 over the Yankees.
4. RHP Seth Lugo relieved Walker in the seventh with a perfect inning on Higashioka’s lineout, Tyler Wade‘s pinch-hit strikeout and Giancarlo Stanton‘s groundout. However, in the eighth, RHP Trevor May worked into trouble by allowing a leadoff single to Brett Gardner. Judge made May pay on the very next pitch, upper-cutting a hanging changeup into the left-field seats and evening the Yankees with the Mets 7-7.
The Mets pulled May for LHP Aaron Loup after Stanton roped a single down the right-field line. May failed to record an out. After an Anthony Rizzo flyout, Gleyber Torres singled off Loup on a hard-hit ball just past SS Francisco Lindor. Luke Voit grounded into a would-be 6-4-3 double play, but following Lindor’s turn, Báez’s throwing error to first scored Torres and the Mets fell behind 8-7.
5. LHP Brad Hand kept the Mets within striking distance, delivering a 1-2-3 ninth with groundouts by Wade and LeMahieu before Gardner’s inning-ending strikeout. Báez hit a sinking line drive to right off Aroldis Chapman, but Judge laid out and robbed the potential leadoff hit.
Manager Luis Rojas subsequently inserted right-handed J.D. Davis in a pinch-hit situation for the left-handed McNeil, and Davis delivered with a one-hop ground-rule double into the right-field-line seats. Up next, Pillar struck out swinging but Davis advanced to third on a drop-third strike during the Higashioka-Rizzo throw. McCann, who went 2 for 3 with three RBI previously, flew out to right and the Mets suffered an 8-7 loss.
The Mets (71-72) and Yankees (79-63) cap a three-game Subway Series with Sunday’s 8 p.m. matchup at Citi Field. Mets RHP Carlos Carrasco (1-2, 5.88 ERA) and a TBD Yankees starter are the probable pitchers.
Source: Yahoo Sports