The late New York Yankees Hall of Famer Yogi Berra is attributed with coining the famous sports axiom, “It ain’t over til it’s over.” While Berra actually never said that, fiction is often more indelible than fact. The Mets embodied the phrase with an unscripted, real live ninth inning comeback against the St. Louis Cardinals to start the week that may have foreshadowed what could be a magical season.
The franchise’s 1969 World Series team is affectionately known as the Miracle Mets for their unlikely and unexpected run to a championship. The current team is optimistic they can also end this season celebrating a title. Monday’s win was an experience that can galvanize a ball club and build a mindset of toughness and resilience. Down 2-0 beginning the top of ninth, the Mets subsequently scored five unearned runs.
“These are games that you can kind of reach back for and remember why you do all this,” said Mets manager Buck Showalter.
The inning was highlighted by a two-run single infield by pinch hitter Dominic Smith, who steamed down the first base line and dove headfirst into the bag to closely beat the throw, and a two-run homer by center fielder Brandon Nimmo. Mets pitcher Max Scherzer (3-0, 1.80 ERA, 33 strikeouts) threw seven shutout innings and struck out 10 concluding the strong showing with a no-decision.
“Everybody’s got a hand in this,” said Scherzer, an eight-time All-Star and three-time Cy Young award winner whom the Mets signed to a record-setting three-year, $130 million free-agent contract in November. “Everybody’s got a hand in doing something for the team.”
The Mets followed up that thrilling win with a 3-0 victory on Tuesday night led by starter Chris Bassett who is now 3-1 in four starts. It kept the Mets at the top of the National East with a record of 14-5, the best in Major League Baseball heading into the final game last night of their three-game road series with the Cardinals.
The Mets will return to Citi Field tomorrow to begin a three-game series versus the Philadelphia Phillies and then play four at home against the reigning NL East and World Series champion Atlanta Braves.