Mets fall to Nationals, 8-6, as bullpen implodes

The bullpen that carried the Mets to such a hot start to the season completely collapsed Monday night. After a brilliant start by Jacob deGrom, the Mets bullpen allowed six runs in the eighth inning as the Mets fell to the Nationals, 8-6, at Citi Field.

The Mets (12-3) have lost two of their last four and dropped their first game of the season to a division opponent.

It was the first blown save for Jeurys Familia this season, who allowed two of his inherited runners to score, coughing up the lead to the Nationals.

Jeurys Familia and the Mets bullpen imploded on Monday.

Jeurys Familia and the Mets bullpen imploded on Monday.

(Kathy Willens/AP)

But this collapse was in progress long before he got the call.

The Nationals chased deGrom with one out in the eighth, with singles by Moises Sierra and Trea Turner, changing the momentum of the game.

Seth Lugo gave up a bases-loaded walk and Jerry Blevins, brought in to face the lefty-hitting Bryce Harper, gave up a two-run single. AJ Ramos got Ryan Zimmerman on a called third strike, but gave up a single to Pedro Severino to load the bases. He then walked Matt Reynolds to bring in the fourth run.

Wilmer Difo tied the game on a two-run single off Familia, who then walked Michael Taylor to give the Nats their go-ahead run.

It didn’t end there, as Hansel Robles gave up a ninth-inning homer to Howie Kendrick for the insurance run.

DeGrom struck out 12 and held the Nats to three runs on six hits. He walked one, intentionally, and became the first Mets starter to record an out in the eighth inning this season. Monday was his first double-digit strikeout game of the season and the 22nd he has posted in his career. His last was Sept. 24, 2017 against the Nationals. He retired 10 straight after Harper’s home run in the first until Matt Adams singled in the fifth. He left after giving up a one-out single to Turner in the eighth and his exit led to the eventual Mets collapse.

Jacob deGrom recorded 12 strikeouts.

Jacob deGrom recorded 12 strikeouts.

(Kathy Willens/AP)

Todd Frazier extended his hitting streak to six straight games and has reached base safely in nine consecutive games.

Michael Conforto doubled with two outs in the first and then scored on Frazier’s single to tie the game. The Mets took the lead in the third when Asdrubal Cabrera scored on Frazier’s double. Conforto tried to score as well, but was thrown out at the plate by Turner’s strong relay throw. After the Mets scored two without a hit out of the infield in the sixth, Cabrera expanded the lead in the seventh, homering to right-field to bring in two more runs.

But it wasn’t enough to overcome the collapse of the bullpen.

PLAY OF THE GAME

Bryce Harper’s unbelievable broken-bat home run in the first inning. He muscled the ball deep to right-center field, into the bullpen area.

Bryce Harper smacked a broken-bat home run on Monday.

Bryce Harper smacked a broken-bat home run on Monday.

(Kathy Willens/AP)

TURNING POINT

The eighth inning meltdown after deGrom was chased was stunning. It started with Seth Lugo walking Howie Kendrick on four pitches and ended with the bullpen having coughed up six runs in .2 of an inning, including walking in two runs.

STAR OF THE GAME

Jacob deGrom was dominating Monday until the eighth inning. He struck out 12 and had retired 10 straight after giving up a solo home run to Bryce Harper in the first. He left two runners in the eighth and got no help from the bullpen.

STAT OF THE DAY

8-1. The Mets suffered their first loss to a National League East opponent this season.

UNSUNG HERO

Todd Frazier extended his hitting streak to six straight games with an RBI-single and RBI-double Monday night. He has reached base safely in nine consecutive games.

MIA

The Mets bullpen, which had been so crucial to their hot start to the season, collapsed Monday. They allowed seven runs in the last two innings.

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Source: Ny Daily News

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