Pete Alonso and Tylor Megill Power the Mets to A Win Over the Rays by Rich Coutinho/TheNYExtra.com
When the Rays came to town they split an important 4 game series with the Yankees before making their way to Queens. And after winning the first game of this 3-game set with Mets beating Justin Verlander they felt good about leaving town with yet another series win. But the New York Mets had other ideas.
After winning a dramatic game on Wednesday night in which they overcome three deficits beating the Rays in extra innings, they returned to the field a few hours later and won the series with a 3-2 win that featured pitching, defense and the big bat of Pete Alonso who has been suffering with a sinus infection but still played and performed at his “Polar Bear” level. He launched his 16th homer of the season giving the Mets a 2-1 lead in the 4th inning as he continues to lead the majors in homers. He now has 16 on the season which is the most in franchise history for any Met player through the first 45 games of the season.
The Rays tied the game in the sixth, but the Mets bounced right back in the bottom of the frame with a Tommy Pham RBI single that gave his team the lead for good. And the pitching was superb against the team with the best record in baseball as Tylor Megill hurled six strong innings and then the Met bullpen trio of Brooks Raley, Jeff Brigham, and David Robertson each put zeroes on the scoreboard with Robetson earning his 7th save of the season.
But the Met defense came up big as well turning 2 double plays and executing a rundown play that short circuited a Rays rally in the sixth inning. In a nutshell, this was a win that proved a few things. First of all, the Mets won a series against a big-time team that most feel is the best in the game. And when you consider the Mets have taken a series this year from both the Dodgers and Rays, you can realize how good this team can become this season. They have not done the job against lesser teams, but this series win over the Rays was a huge step for this team.
The schedule continues to be tough as the Guardians invade Citi for a 3-game series this weekend, but I can tell you that the Mets feel born again right now and I can tell that by talking to them this week. There is so much in this sport you simply can not control as a player but much like this team came together last year when Francisco Lindor played with a broken finger, Pete Alonso playing the last 3 days suffering from a terrible sinus infection is speaking volumes inside that Met clubhouse.
If this team goes on a roll after this series, you can point to 2 things–Alonso and how the young kids have come up from AAA to contribute to this team. The Mets are dangerous to play right now because they are combining an overall deep roster with a belief in each other that we saw last year. And on Friday night another injured player returns as Carlos Carrasco gets the start against his former team. And aside from Jose Quintana, the entire Mets rotation is armed and ready with Tylor Megill and his five wins this season ready to hold the fort till Quintana returns.
And this series with the Rays has illustrated what that could mean to the rest of the teams in the sport of baseball.