Mets' Magic Runs Out

By Klapisch, Bob | The Record (Bergen County, NJ), November 2, 2015 | Go to article overview

Mets' Magic Runs Out


Klapisch, Bob, The Record (Bergen County, NJ)


NEW YORK -- There were no words to describe how quickly and brutally the Mets' season came to an end on Sunday night. Just know everyone was too numb to speak or even move, watching the Royals celebrate a world championship that the Mets knew was in their grasp.

But it didn't turn out that way for the Mets, not even close. The Royals were tougher, more resilient, relentless in pursuit of their first title in 30 years, flattening the Mets at every turn. A 7-2 win in 12 innings in Game 5 was an advertisement for everything the Royals did right throughout the Fall Classic -- and what Mets did wrong.

With the score tied at 2-2, Kansas City scored five runs against Addison Reed and Bartolo Colon, wearing down the Mets after having sent the game into extra innings with two runs in the ninth.

After Christian Colon's RBI single gave the Royals the lead in the 12th, Lorenzo Cain's three-run double finished the Mets once and for all. None of the Mets hung around in the dugout to watch the Royals destroy each other on the mound after the last out -- it would've hurt too much to look.

The fans at Citi Field, heading for the exits, were just as ready to close the books on a season that exceeded everyone's expectations but ended in profound disappointment.

The Mets, after all, blew ninth-inning leads in three of the five games. Daniel Murphy's error was the killer in Game 4, and Lucas Duda's errant throw sent Sunday night's game into extra innings. The Mets had been just two outs away from victory.

And one more wound: Terry Collins will have to explain his decision to keep Matt Harvey in the game after the right-hander walked Cain leading off the ninth inning. The Mets were leading 2-0 at that point, but Harvey, who'd thrown an eight-inning masterpiece including nine strikeouts, was already at 102 pitches.

What was Collins thinking? He allowed Harvey to face Eric Hosmer, who promptly doubled home Cain, cutting the lead to 2-1, which spelled the beginning of the end.

Harvey walked off the mound to a thundering ovation, but the emergency would only get worse from there.

Just like that, the Royals had their first run, Harvey had finally cracked, and the Mets, in desperate need of three more outs, called on Jeurys Familia.

This is the same closer who'd already blown save opportunities in Games 1 and 4, yet Collins summoned Familia one more time. "He's the best I've got," the manager said during the Series, handing Familia the ball with an unspoken plea: Rescue us.

Once again Familia failed, although for the second time in two nights it was the Mets' defense that was the real saboteur.

Familia used his signature sinking, two-seam fastball to overpower Mike Moustakas, who barely managed a ground ball to Duda at first. Hosmer advanced to third while Duda was stepping on the bag, bringing Salvador Perez to the plate.

Here's how the Mets proceeded to break down. Perez, struggling with Familia's sinker just as Moustakas did, tapped a soft grounder to David Wright. The third baseman failed to see Hosmer already a third of the way down the line toward home, and instead fired across the infield to Duda. …

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