Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Bemoanable Bullpen

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Bemoanable Bullpen

Article excerpt

MIAMI -- The Mets have a bullpen issue again.

Casey McGehee hit a walk-off single off Gonzalez Germen as the Marlins rallied to beat the Mets, 4-3, on Monday night at Marlins Park. The Mets led, 3-0, entering the eighth, but reliever Daisuke Matsuzaka allowed three runs while failing to record an out.

The relievers now have blown saves in two of the last three games. The game-winning hit bounced off Germen's leg and trickled into right field.

Matsuzaka struggled with his command and the Marlins took advantage. He issued back-to-back walks to start the frame before surrendering an RBI single to Giancarlo Stanton on a 3-2 pitch that made it 3-1.

McGehee followed with a low liner to short that Omar Quintanilla failed to grab, as the ball careened off him for an error. A run scored on the play to slice the lead to one. Matsuzaka then fell behind Jarrod Saltalamacchia, 3-1, before serving up a game-tying RBI double to right-center that led to his departure.

Closer Kyle Farnsworth followed Matsuzaka and pitched perhaps his finest inning as a Met. He stranded the bases loaded to keep the game tied.

The implosion was Matsuzaka's first bad outing in his new role as reliever, as he entered with a 1.74 ERA. His rough night wasted a terrific performance by Jon Niese, who threw seven shutout innings and departed with the three-run lead.

After two men reached in the first inning, Niese found his groove in the middle innings, not yielding a hit from the fourth to the sixth. The only baserunner during that span was when Niese couldn't field a simple grounder.

In the seventh, the Marlins opened with back-to-back singles, putting Niese in his first true jam of the night. He retired Adeiny Hechavarria on a soft fly to center, then coaxed a double play out of pinch-hitter Marcell Ozuna. Niese pumped his fist as he walked off the field.

He allowed just five hits while striking out six. …

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