Paul DeJong Becomes Latest Mets Killer in Torturous Weekend at Citi Field

I don’t want to spend days writing this article, so I’ll try to keep it mostly about the last four days. Please keep in mind that being a Mets fan is really about much more. Years of suffering. Frustration with the owners. Incompetence throughout their organization. It all ties together. That’s the backdrop. Every frustrating loss and stupid decision brings anger that stems from so much past aggravation. On to the microcosm that was this most recent series.

We start with Thursday. Paul DeJong connected against Mets ace Jacob deGrom for a sixth-inning home run that erased the 2-1 Mets lead. I don’t remember anything like what this guy has done. Sure, there were guys who did damage over the years. Chipper Jones had a long career. He is a HOF player. Numerous Phillies have played well against the Mets. Guys like Pat Burrell. DeJong plays for St. Louis. Although they used to be in the NL East, that was over 25 years ago. St. Louis is no longer a division foe.

There was an article written on Friday asking what was wrong with DeJong, and this was after his home run on Thursday night. I don’t think people are asking this question today. More on him later. The Mets held a 4-2 lead after 8. What followed was so incredibly Mets. A rain delay was about to begin. The Mets pleaded for umpires to let them continue playing. If that game had been called right there, it’s a Mets victory. They would be credited with a win in 8 innings. One can only assume that they were unaware of the rule or situation. St. Louis rallied to tie the score. Play was then paused with the score tied. This means that the game was suspended. Typical foolishness. One more note from Thursday. Mets catcher Wilson Ramos learned that his wife was pregnant when she held up a sign just before he came up to bat. Ramos struck out. Maybe wait until after the game next time.

Friday night began with the resumption of Thursday’s debacle. I was hoping for a quick win by scoring in the ninth inning. That did not happen. The Mets went quietly. Mets manager Mickey Callaway decided to bring back closer Edwin Diaz for another inning. After all, it was a different night. What could go wrong? Diaz promptly allowed a single and stolen base. DeJong singled in a run. Of course he did. The Mets were again quickly retired, and DeJong had again hurt the Mets. It was two days of frustration for one loss. Their closer had cost them twice. However, there was plenty more to come. It was only 6:30. Their scheduled game had not even started yet.

Kevin Clancy of Barstool Sports tweeted that he was upset about first baseman Pete Alonso’s actions the night before. This led to a spat between the men that did not capture the real issue. I don’t really know how to use an analogy, but it makes no sense to campaign for continuing when your team is ahead and would win if play was stopped for a rain delay before getting called for the night. It’s about not knowing rules. Alonso tweeted about having confidence in teammates. The whole thing is ridiculous. I wanted to throw out a basketball comparison, but forget it. There is so much more to cover. The night was not even an hour old at this point.

On to the scheduled part of Friday’s disaster. The Mets rallied back and claimed a 5-4 lead after trailing 4-1. Fan favorite (sarcasm) Jeurys Familia took the mound. His second pitch was deposited over the left field wall by DeJong. Familia remained in and allowed three more runs. His ERA is now 6.91, as Dexter Fowler also took him deep. St. Louis prevailed 9-5.

Saturday featured embarrassing comments by Brodie Van Wagenen. The Mets GM did not seem alarmed by his team’s play. They were 33-34 entering Thursday’s series opener, but Brodie claimed that the Mets were “right where we wanted to be.” After building an 8-3 lead, the Mets held on for dear life and won 8-7 by throwing out a pitcher at home plate following another shaky outing by Diaz. Starter Noah Syndergaard departed with a strained right hamstring. He has been placed on the injured list. They finally won, and it felt like a loss. There were major trades Saturday. Anthony Davis went to the Lakers. In baseball, Seattle traded Edwin Encarnacion to the Yankees. SNY tweeted those two moves, but put the Mets getting Brooks Pounders from Cleveland with those deals. Above it. This team continuously finds new ways to be a joke. With press conferences. In tweets. As if their play was not bad enough.

Sunday wrapped up the weekend series in agonizing fashion. A starting pitcher left with an injury for the second time in less than 24 hours, and once again it was a Met. Jason Vargas came out with a cramp. He was hitting. Perhaps there will be a DH in the NL soon. Most teams would improve their lineup. Only the Mets would lose some of their best hitters. St. Louis pulled out a 4-3 win despite being outhit 10-3. Chris Flexen fell to 0-3. I still have not forgiven this guy for blowing a game against Milwaukee in the 18th inning earlier this season. Familia was up in the bullpen during today’s game. It looked like they would need him at some point. Especially after Vargas came out early on. Callaway actually found a worse pitcher to use in Flexen. St. Louis went ahead on a home run by none other than DeJong. Entering Sunday, he ranked first in slugging percentage (.788) among all Major Leaguers with 85 plate appearances against the Mets. He left slugging .807 at Citi Field. In his 20 career games against the Mets, DeJong has nine home runs and a 1.200 OPS. That is the highest all time for anyone with a minimum of 80 plate appearances facing the Mets. At Citi Field, he has six homers in 11 games.

The Mets head to Atlanta for a series against the surging Braves before continuing on against the Cubs at Wrigley Field. After four in Chicago, the Mets will travel to Philadelphia for four more games. Sounds like a fun road trip. Enjoy it.