Before the game the Mets announced that a few injured players would be reinstated on the roster as Seth Lugo, Pete Alonso, and Kevin Pillar would all be on the team’s active roster with Jacob deGrom taking the hill in the opener of a 3 game series in Arizona taking on the Diamondbacks.
And deGrom continued his wonderful season with 6 shutout innings only surrendering 2 harmless hits and yes his bat once again played a role with a key RBI single in the fourth inning. He lowered his microscopic ERA to 0.71 and he has become the first pitcher in major league history to post a sub 1.00 ERA and hit .450 at the plate in any span of 8 starts ever in baseball history. That is rarified air and you want more? His 0.71 ERA is the lowest in baseball history through the month of May since Chris Short’s 0.64 ERA entering June of 1964.
And Pete Alonso back from the injured list drove in four runs including a 440 foot plus homer deep into the left field bleachers after he drove in 2 with a bases loaded single earlier in the contest. Alonso has resisted a rehab assignment and he proved to be right on target as his swing looked dynamite all night.
But the real emotional part of this night was the return of Kevin Pillar who entered the game on a double switch in the 7th inning and in his first at bat smashed a single which was amazing when you consider just a couple of weeks ago he was hit by a pitch which caused him to undergo surgery but his drive and determination have become a source of inspiration for this team as injured players are starting to return.
And players who are filling in keep contributing as well as Billy McKinney crushed a homer while Mason Williams who just joined the team today from AAA pitched in with a base hit and an incredible catch in center field that curtailed a late inning Diamondback rally.
When you combine what these bench Mets have done with a will to win you can readily see why no team in baseball has a larger lead in their division than they Mets currently possess as they lead the second place Braves by 2.5 games with a 6 game lead in the loss column while leading the Phils and Nats by 9 in that loss column.
And you could also argue that no pitcher has ever gotten off to a better start in their first 8 games than Jacob deGrom in baseball history. 51 innings pitched with a 0.71 ERA which includes only giving up 22 hits and only surrendering 7 walks while striking out 82 hitters. Teams are batting .129 against him this season and I would say that is the GREATEST 8 game start to a season in baseball history when you throw in his offensive exploits inside the batters box.
Forget the best pitcher–he might be the best PLAYER in baseball and he proved it on a night the Mets launched a 9 game road trip by winning their 5th game in a row and they finish the month of May with a 17-9 record. And one of the biggest reasons for that is the BEST hurler in the sport–Jacob deGrom.