Buck Showalter looks at the New York Mets and sees a team performing well in all aspects of the game.
Joe Girardi looks at the Philadelphia Phillies and sees the opposite.
The Mets will look to complete a series sweep of their skidding National League East rivals Sunday night, when New York hosts the Phillies in the finale of a three-game set.
Chris Bassitt (4-2, 3.91 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Mets against fellow right-hander Zack Wheeler (3-3, 3.38 ERA).
The NL East-leading Mets locked up a series win Saturday night, putting savvy baserunning and timely hitting to good use in an 8-2 victory.
New York used a first-to-third sequence to build its first run in the second, when Eduardo Escobar singled with one out, advanced two bases on Mark Canha’s single and scored on Dominic Smith’s sacrifice fly.
A three-run fourth began with Francisco Lindor drawing a leadoff walk and going to third base on Pete Alonso’s single before Jeff McNeil followed with a homer into the second deck in right field.
The Mets scored three times again in the fifth, when fill-in leadoff batter Luis Guillorme led off with a bunt single and went to third on Starling Marte’s double before both runners scored on Lindor’s triple. Lindor trotted home on a sacrifice fly by Alonso.
“Lot of first to third, lot of good reads,” Showalter, the Mets manager, said. “I think that’s what I take out of it, (how) guys are playing. To me, there’s three parts of the game. There’s defense, offense and baserunning. And it’s really separate, a lot of times, from the hitting part of it.”
The Phillies have found it difficult to click in even one facet of the game over the past 13 games, a span in which they’ve gone 4-9 while being outscored 58-44. Philadelphia has been held to three runs or fewer five times and has given up five runs or more six times over the 13-day span.
The Phillies, who entered Saturday ranking last in the majors with negative-23 defensive runs saved per a metric devised by Baseball Info Solutions, weren’t charged with any errors Saturday. But left fielder Kyle Schwarber and centerfielder Odubel Herrera nearly collided while converging on Lindor’s triple, which went just beyond Schwarber’s grasp on the left field warning track.
“It’s a plethora of things,” Girardi, the Phillies manager, said. “At times, we haven’t pitched well. At times, we haven’t hit well. At times, our defense has let us down.
“It’s not one thing in particular. It’s different things.”
Bassitt had his worst start as a member of the Mets on Tuesday, when he gave up eight runs over 4 1/3 innings to the San Francisco Giants. He didn’t factor into the decision in the 13-12 loss. Wheeler earned the win Monday after surrendering two runs over 6 2/3 innings as the Phillies beat the Atlanta Braves, 7-3.
Bassitt won his lone career appearance against the Phillies on May 8, when he gave up one run over 5 2/3 innings as the Mets earned a 6-1 win in the second game of a doubleheader. Wheeler, who pitched for the Mets from 2013 through 2019, is 4-2 with a 2.58 ERA against his former team.
–Field Level Media