Drew Smith was responsible for only one run he earned on Friday night, but it turned out to be a killer.
After being handed the ball after starter Max Scherzer’s 7-inning, 1-run outing, Smith walked the first two batsmen of the eighth inning. He then dropped Ty France for a single, allowing the Seattle Mariners (15–18) to advance to a 2–1 win.
Smith walked off the field after dismissing his last three batsmen and looked disappointed. The damage had been done.
The next chance for the Mets (22-12) to tie it up again came at the bottom of the innings with a ball that hit Pete Alonso’s bat at 103 mph but died on the warning track. Alonso took off his helmet after scoring first base, equal parts disappointed and surprised.
It was a very different mood for the Mets just an innings ago, when Scherzer shouted in celebration to avoid a base-loaded jam in the seventh.
Mariners manager Scott Servais joked that his batsmen were about to hit against Scherzer.
“Don’t look at the brown eyes,” she said with a laugh. Maybe he did. Maybe they didn’t.
At the Japanese Heritage Night at Citi Field, Scherzer easily eliminated his first 10 batters before he slipped briefly.
Scherzer retired a total of 19 batsmen, including six strikeouts and two hit batsmen. He dropped an earned run on three hits and released two walks on Thursday in seven innings and 98 pitches. It was the first time he hit two batsmen in a game since July 8, 2021, when he was still with the Nationals.
In the fourth inning, Scherzer dunked France with his four-seam fastball, eliciting audible gasps from the home crowd. His second mistake was to leave out his next batsman, JP Crawford, who entered the game with .953 OPS. That fourth innings turned into a bit of a mess for Scherzer when he dropped another single, this time to his fifth batsman of the innings, Jesse Winker, which allowed France to score and level the game at 1-1.
He got into some trouble again in the seventh when he loaded the base after giving a single to Eugenio Suarez and running Winker and Ford. But he fielded his last batsman of the innings, Steven Souza Jr., in a double play, closing out the innings without scoring another Mariner, and he was able to elicit enthusiastic cheer from Mets loyalists.