New York Mets’ season all but over after historic ninth-inning collapse
WASHINGTON – The 2019 Mets’ season all but ended Tuesday night, the result of a moment that not even years of #LOLMets happenings could have prepared the most cynical Mets fan for.
A six-run, ninth-inning lead is supposed to be automatic. Even the Bad News Bears could protect that large of an edge. Teams talk all the time of playing to the last out, but let’s be honest, it’s easy for a team down that many runs to pack it in.
Yet, the 2019 Mets became the first team in franchise history, per ESPN Stats & Info, to fail to protect such a large lead in the ninth inning or later.
Edwin Diaz, the supposed relief ace the Mets potentially sold their future for this past offseason, provided his most Metsian moment yet, surrendering a three-run, walk-off homer on a 100-mph fastball to catcher Kurt Suzuki that completed the Nationals’ seven-run inning and gave them an 11-10 victory.
Even Brandon Nimmo, perhaps the most upbeat player in Major League Baseball, couldn’t fathom that his team blew a 10-4 advantage.
“When I came in here, I didn’t really know what happened, it just seemed like a bad dream,” Nimmo said after the Nationals’ largest ninth-inning rally in their history. “That’s hard to do even in a Little League game. To come back from (six) runs down against guys throwing 99 mph, I don’t really have words for that.”
NO COMING BACK FROM THAT
Mets manager Mickey Callaway tried to preach positivity after the game, but there’s no sugarcoating this. The Mets are finished. Throw the damn towel, if you will. Put a fork in them. There’s no coming back from this crushing of a loss.
Sure, the Mets still have 24 games left, but they’re now five behind the Cubs for the second wild card, and have three others in front of them.
You simply can’t lose games when you have a 99.9 percent chance to win —according to ESPN — entering the bottom of the ninth inning. Those are games that have to be wins, especially now when a team is in a playoff push.
The Mets were just three outs a way from winning the first two games of this series, including conquering Max Scherzer on Tuesday, and having the chance to possibly sweep the Nationals to complete a 5-1 road trip
That would have been a heck of a way to head into a 10-game homestand.
Now, the Mets will have to try to shake off a horrific loss that most of them probably have never experienced before. Losses all count the same in the loss column, but certain ones sting more. This one qualifies as an all-timer.
It’s possible the Mets could miss the playoffs by one or two games, and any Mets fan will forever remember blowing a 10-4 lead in the ninth.
“This might be the toughest one of the season. We had it. Quick turnaround tomorrow,” infielder Jeff McNeil said. “We’ve got flush it. We got to win tomorrow.”
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