Nimmo, Mets finally support deGrom in 12-2 win over Rockies
DENVER (AP) Brandon Nimmo began the game with an inside-the-park home run. Turned out he was just getting started.
”It took a funny bounce (off the wall), so something was working my way for that first at-bat,” Nimmo said. ”That was pretty cool and a great way to start it off. Just kind of loosened things up after that.”
Wilmer Flores and Devin Mesoraco also went deep for New York, which won its third straight following a prolonged slide. Nimmo had four hits and set a career high with four RBIs – one night after his go-ahead, two-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning staved off defeat for the Mets and rallied them to a win at Arizona.
”I think everybody knew he was capable of playing at an elite level and that is pretty elite,” New York manager Mickey Callaway said. ”He goes out there and plays the game right every single day. He brings energy and it’s paying off for him.”
After pitching in terrible luck for weeks as New York’s hitters slumped, deGrom (5-2) got some help from his teammates at last. He allowed two runs – one earned – in eight innings to snap a two-game skid and win for the first time in six outings since May 18 against the Diamondbacks.
On the eve of his 30th birthday, the right-hander struck out seven, walked one and lowered his major league-leading ERA to 1.51. He improved to 4-0 with a 1.01 ERA in six career starts against Colorado.
The 12 runs the Mets scored were more than they managed in deGrom’s previous eight starts combined. He had given up only five earned runs in his last five games – without a single win to show for it.
”I think he’s proven over the last two years that he’s in the conversation as one of the best pitchers in baseball,” Rockies manager Bud Black said.
It was the eighth home loss in a row for the Rockies, who have permitted at least seven runs in all those games. Black was ejected in the fourth for arguing a call by first base umpire Bill Welke.
Tyler Anderson (4-2) went 5 1/3 innings for Colorado, yielding three runs and seven hits. And it was another rough outing collectively for the bullpen. Four relievers were tagged for nine runs in 4 2/3 innings.
”We’re going to get out of this funk,” said Jake McGee, who gave up Mesoraco’s homer. ”For how close our clubhouse is, I know we’re going to get out of it. And once we get out of it, we’re going to be stronger than we were before.”
Playing in front of family and friends from his Wyoming hometown, Nimmo got the game off to a rousing start. He lofted a deep drive that hit off the right-center field wall and rolled away from Carlos Gonzalez. By the time the right fielder chased it down, Nimmo had charged past third base and went into home standing up, well ahead of a weak throw.
”I haven’t done that before,” he said. ”That was fun.”
Nimmo became the third Mets player to lead off a game with an inside-the-park home run and first since Angel Pagan on Aug. 23, 2009, against Philadelphia. The previous New York player with an inside-the-park homer was Ruben Tejada on Sept. 2, 2015, also against the Phillies.
Nimmo’s second home run of the night came in the seventh off Harrison Musgrave and went over the center-field fence, allowing him to round the bases at a more conventional pace.
Plate umpire Tony Randazzo endured a painful night, twice getting struck by foul balls, but he saw it through. He was hit on his left hand by a foul tip off the bat of Nolan Arenado in the third inning but had team trainers wrap some protective tape around his hand and went back to work. In the sixth, a foul ball off the bat of Michael Conforto struck him at the base of his neck just above his protective breastplate. Clearly in pain, Randazzo was tended to again by trainers but managed to shake it off after a few minutes and stay in the game.
Mets: Slumping RF Jay Bruce was scratched from the lineup because of nagging hip soreness. He has missed four of the last five starts, and Callaway said Bruce will be re-evaluated in the next day or two. Callaway said the disabled list remains an option. … RHP Noah Syndergaard, sidelined since May 26 with a strained ligament in his right index finger, played catch and came out of it well. He’s expected to do some longer tosses, 75 to 80 feet, as part of his ongoing rehab effort.
Rockies: RHP Carlos Estevez faced hitters for the first time since going on the DL with a strain in his pitching elbow near the end of spring training. Estevez threw about 20 pitches to Tony Wolters, Ryan McMahon and Noel Cuevas and reported to team trainers that he came out of the session pain-free.
Mets: LHP Jason Vargas (2-5, 7.39 ERA) starts Tuesday night at Coors Field.
Rockies: RHP German Marquez (4-7, 5.13) is 0-2 with an 8.44 ERA in three starts this month.
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