It was not John Maine’s day as he allowed three home runs and seven earned runs. On the other side, Nationals starter John Lannan had the game of his career, pitching a complete game and inducing a Nationals five double play balls, tying a team record.
Maine struggled and admitted after the game said he didn’t feel right or have his stuff. The pitches were located, but Mets manager Jerry Manuel mentioned that maybe he didn’t have the extra zip that would’ve turned those home runs into outs.
Maine was coming off of getting over the same stomach virus that afflicted Carlos Beltran, so maybe that affected him a little more than he might admit. He lasted just four innings. It was the second game in three that a Mets starter gave up seven runs or more. Ironically, it was Tim Redding who had the best game out of the three last night. Maybe Livan Hernandez will have a similar kind of outing Sunday.
The Mets offense was pathetic as they were able to muster only one run and four hits. The lone run came after a Nationals error, when David Wright scored when Elijah Dukes dropped a fly ball in the eight inning. Wright and Fernando Tatis hit two singles in a row to start that mini-rally before Wilson Valdez grounded into a double play.
The craziest play of the season for the Mets came in the fourth inning. Luis Castillo walked to first base. Emil Brown then came up and hit fly ball to Dukes in right field that at first looked like was caught. The umpire said Dukes trapped the ball against the ground. However, Castillo thought Dukes caught the ball, so he went back to first to tag up.
Meanwhile, Brown passed Castillo after he rounded first, frantically waving at Castillo to get back to second. That caused an automatic out. By then, Dukes had thrown the ball, from his butt no less, to second where Castillo was tagged out, thereby causing one of the strangest double plays you’ll see your entire life.
So, the Mets lost to another team they shouldn’t theoretically lose to. Thankfully, the Phillies also lost to the Dodgers, leaving the Mets three games behind them for first place.