Nola shines, but Phillies dominated by deGrom and Mets’ bullpen in 1-0 loss

NEW YORK (Neth.) – The best thing that happened to the Phillies on Saturday night was when the New York Mets bullpen door swung open before the start of the seventh inning.

Mets-starter Jacob deGrom shutout the Phillies on two basehits in six innings. He did not walk and struckout 10 batters. Now he left the game and the Phillies would have a chance to get things going against the Mets bullpen.

That unit proved to be just as hard on the Phillies, who were 1-0 losers to the Mets in front of a sold-out crowd of 43,857 Citi Field.

DeGrom and Aaron Nola got to work in a great pitching duel.

Nola threw eight innings, hit four basehits, walked one and struckout eight batters. The Phils attack did nothing behind him. Mets pitching had a lot to do with that, of course. Four Mets-pitchers gave up only three basehits, walked two and struckout 14 batters. Both walks were called out by closer Edwin Diaz in the top of the ninth, but the Phillies were unable to take advantage. Diaz struckout Nick Castellanos with runners on second and third base to end the game.

“It’s tough,” Nola said after the heartbreaking loss. “It was a good fight. Against deGrom, we knew it was going to be a low score game. We knew it was going to be a fight all night and it was.”

Bryson Stott had one of the Phillies’ two hits against theGrom. The young shortstop tipped his cap to both pitchers.

“DeGrom has an elite fastball and an elite slider,” he said. “Nola was incredible as he always is. It’s a shame we couldn’t scratch a few for him. But that’s baseball. I can’t get over how good Nola was.”

Two of the Phillies’ best bats were not in the starting lineup. Jean Segura was on a scheduled maintenance day while recovering from a broken right index finger.

Kyle Schwarber was held up due to a minor right calf strain. He improves and was able to make a pinch-hit late in the game. He could be a contender for Sunday’s series finale.

DeGrom missed the first four months of the season with a shoulder injury. This was only his third start since coming off the injured list, so he was waived after six innings and 76 pitches. During his time on the hill, he was completely dominant. He came out of the gate and threw a charge at a 99.8 mph fastball.

He was just warming up.

DeGrom threw 40 fastballs and 10 of them were 100 mph or more. He averaged 99.2 mph on the field and got eight swings and misses. He complimented his fastball with a hard slider that averaged 92.6 mph. He threw 30 and got nine swings and misses.

Both hits that deGrom allowed were singles. Rhys Hoskins stroked a fastball to the right in the first inning and Stott served a slider to the right in the sixth.

DeGrom had four 1-2-3 innings.

“He’s tough,” said manager Rob Thomson. “A 100mph fastball and a great slider. He had good stuff. He comes as advertised. Nola does too. He threw great.”

Nola didn’t have the octane that deGrom had, but that’s not to say he wasn’t very impressive.

The lone run he gave up came in the first inning after Starling Marte reached on an one-out single. Marte stole second base when Nola struckout Francisco Lindor for the second out. The throw from catcher JT Realmuto passed Stott and shot into midfield, enabling Marte to finish in third place. The next batter, Pete Alonso, singled to the right and Marte scored with what turned out to be the lone run of the game.

The Phillies have been dealing with some elite pitching this week. They defeated NL Cy Young contender Sandy Alcantara on Wednesday and held out against three-time Cy Young winner Max Scherzer en route to a 2-1 win in Friday night’s series opener against the Mets.

Both games against the Mets have been played in front of big, loud crowds, as you see in October.

“It’s good to see guys perform in this atmosphere,” Thomson said. “This was a play-off atmosphere, deGrom went, the crowd in, full house, and we were relaxed and ready for the first two games and played great.”

The Phils are 4-10 against the Mets this season and have lost all four series between the two teams. There is still hope for the Phils to get these. They’re sending Zack Wheeler to the mound on Sunday afternoon against Chris Bassitt.

“We need to dust ourselves off and try to win a series,” Thomson said. “Wheels are as good as anyone.”

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