Matsuzaka struggles in second start as Mets lose again

 

Say this for Daisuke Matsuzaka: He has a strong sense of self-confidence.

“I believe as long as I have my command I can get batters out,” Matsuzaka said after he was completely unable to make pitches in the Mets’ 6-2 loss to the Phillies Wednesday night at Citi Field.

The loss was the Mets’ sixth in their last eight games, as they fell to 59-72.

Following back-to-back strong outings from Zack Wheeler and Jon Niese, manager Terry Collins suggested prior to last night’s game Matsuzaka could throw 120 pitches. And to be fair, he did come close. When he was lifted after 4 1/3 innings for Robert Carson, Matsuzaka (0-2) had thrown 110 pitches — 66 strikes and 44 balls — and trailed 4-1.

“[Last night’s] game was pretty self-explanatory, I think,” Matsuzaka said.

He loaded the bases three times, hit two batters and allowed six hits while walking four.

“I really haven’t seen him this year at all,” Collins said of Matsuzaka, whom the Mets signed on Aug. 22. “It’s been a couple years since I’ve seen him pitch live. I do know the history. He does take some time between pitches, but I will tell you his stuff is good enough. It plays. [Last night] the command was off and therefore he was off. When he commands it, he’s going to get outs because it’s good enough.”

Even though Carson, David Aardsma, Scott Atchison and Pedro Feliciano were mostly effective in the final 4 2/3 innings — the quartet combined to yield just two run on six hits — the damage was insurmountable, especially with Cole Hamels on the mound for the Phillies.

As he has seemingly throughout his career, Phillies starter Cole Hamels was able to make the lead hold up. Hamels (6-13) struck out eight in seven innings while scattering nine hits and two runs. He improved to 7-12 in 25 career starts against the Mets.

The Mets actually led 1-0 in the third when Ike Davis drove in Eric Young Jr. in the third for the game’s first run. Young reached on a fielder’s choice when Roger Bernadina could not catch his flare into short center. The Mets’ left fielder stole second and advanced to third when Jimmy Rollins did not cover while Carlos Ruiz caught Andrew Brown’s pop-up.

Andrew Brown’s RBI double in the sixth scored Daniel Murphy from third to cut the deficit to 5-2. But that’s as close as the Mets would come.

John McDonald added an insurance run in the top of the ninth when Atchison could not control Kevin Frandson’s tapper, and Jacob Diekman threw a 1-2-3 bottom of the frame in recording his first save of the season.

Carlos Torres (2-2, 2.96 ERA) will oppose Ethan Martin (2-2, 6.33 ERA) in the series finale Thursday. After the game, the Mets leave for Washington to begin a three-city, 10-day road trip.

Follow Mets beat writer Denis Gorman on Twitter @DenisGorman.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MTA announces service changes for Sunday

The MTA has announced service changes ahead of Sunday's People's Climate March, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Riders using…

Local

NYPD launches Twitter account for L train

The NYPD recently launched a Twitter handle dedicated to the L train and its riders. According to @NYPDLtrain, officers went underground Thursday morning to hand…

Local

Bushwick community space offers activists a place to…

A new Bushwick community space offers community activists to meet, create, learn and throw back a few cold ones. MayDay, located 214 Starr Street in Bushwick,…

Local

Activists gearing up for Sunday's "historic" People's Climate…

If all goes according to plan, more than 100,000 people will gather near Central Park West on Sunday morning and march through midtown to raise…

Movies

Kevin Smith makes peace with the Internet

I was thinking about Ain't It Cool News and Harry Knowles last night, wondering if anyone from Ain't It Cool had reviewed my new movie…

Movies

Art imitates life in 'Swim Little Fish Swim'

There's a certain comfort to be taken in finding that young artists are still moving to New York and trying to make it — and…

Movies

Review: Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem' is better…

Terry Gilliam's latest, "The Zero Theorem," concerns a reclusive malcontent (Christoph Waltz) struggling with the search for the meaning of life.

Music

Esperanza Spalding and a being called Emily get…

Esperanza Spalding is about to spiral off in a brand new direction that may or may include an alter ego named Emily.

NFL

Oday Aboushi ready for increased role, and to…

Oday Aboushi might feel comfortable enough to engage in some trash talk the next time he is on the field.

NFL

Giants vs. Texans: 3 things to watch

The Giants host the surprising Texans (2-0) in what may already be a must-win game for Big Blue.

NFL

Eric Decker misses practice again, could miss Monday

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker missed practice Thursday as he continues to rehab a hamstring injury suffered last Sunday.

MLB

Derek Jeter still focused on baseball as final…

Derek Jeter has effectively hid his emotions for 20 years in the Bronx.

Parenting

A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.

Style

3 things we love from Day 1 of…

The highlights from Day 1 of Milan Fashion Week.

Sex

Why don't more couples use condoms?

  Call it the “condom moment.” That’s the name the authors of a new study have given to the pivotal conversation every couple should be…

Sex

Need an idea for a first date? Here's…

Picture your idea of a nice first date. Is it dinner and a movie? A visit to an interesting museum exhibit? Instead, an expert on…