Congratulations, Mets – onto the National League Championship Series (NLCS).
On Thursday night, the New York Mets defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 3-2, in the 5th and deciding game of their heated NLDS battle. SP Jacob DeGrom did not have his best stuff early, but grinded out 6 strong innings. 2B Daniel Murphy was the offensive catalyst, going 3-for-4 with a game-winning solo HR in the 6th off Dodger starter, Zack Greinke. Murphy batted .333 in the series with 3 HRs, and 5 RBIs. His heads-up play in the 4th tied the game. Already on 1st following a single, 1B Lucas Duda walked. The Dodgers were in a defensive shift to the right side to neutralize Duda. Following the walk, Murphy trotted to 2nd, rounded the bag, and caught the Dodgers off-balance, stealing 3rd with 1 out. He scored on C Travis D’Arnaud’s Sacrifice Fly to right. Mets manager Terry Collins skillfully utilized P Noah Syndergaard in a scoreless inning of relief in the 7th, and closer P Jeurys Familia completed a dominant 2-inning Save.
So, the Mets are on to the NLCS starting Saturday night at Citi Field vs. the young, powerful, and talented Chicago Cubs. The Cubs smashed 6 HRs in a Game 3 win at Wrigley Field vs. the Cardinals on Monday, and closed out their rivals in Game 4 on Tuesday. In Game 1, Joe Maddon will send veteran LHP Jon Lester to the mound against the Dark Knight of Gotham, RHP Matt Harvey. In Game 2, the Cubs will go with likely NL Cy Young Award winner, RHP Jake Arrieta. As of Friday evening, the Mets were undecided on their Game 2 starter. Since Noah Syndergaard pitched in Game 5, it is likely that the Mets will go with LHP Steven Matz in Game 2, likely followed by Jacob DeGrom in Game 3, and Noah Syndergaard in Game 4. It will be exciting to see the Mets power pitching against the Cubs talented young hitters.
Let’s Go Mets….
Mike Lalor can be heard talking New York sports on the Spadora on Sports Radio Program. His blog can be found at spadoraonsports.com.