Joey Bats Grand Slams Mets to Win • Latino Sports

Baseball

Joey Bats Grand Slams Mets to Win

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Flushing, NY – The games are meaningless at this point for the New York Mets but there is something to play for before the All-Star break and the end of month non waiver trade deadline. Friday night at Citi Field Jacob deGrom once again did not get the decision but Jose Bautista proved with a walk-off grand slam that he still has value.

The game winning walk-off grand slam in the ninth to left, off the first pitch from Chaz Roe, was his sixth-career slam and led the Mets to a 5-1 interleague win over Tampa Bay in the first of three and it was a rare win at home.

And the blast to left so much resembled why Bautista has been called “Joey Bats.” He has been the Mets most consistent hitter since his acquisition on May 21st. And though Bautista does not fit in the Mets plans for their future it does not matter for the moment,

Bautista is in the lineup, provides leadership as a veteran, and wants to help his team win ball games as the Mets try to make this losing season be more respectable. With various scouts of Major League teams watching, and looking for a veteran presence in the lineup. Bautista once again delivered.

“For what we’ve seen as a Met it’s been outstanding,” said manager Mickey Callaway. “His ability to take the ball at the plate forces pitchers to pitch to him.” Bautista took the first pitch after Todd Frazier led off the inning with a walk, followed by a single from Devin Mesoraco, a sacrifice bunt from Amed Rosario and a Brandon Nimmo intentional walk.

He has hit .300 with four home runs and 15 RBI in his last 17 games, also getting on base with 20 walks in his last 19 games, 29 in 39 games with the Mets.

It was deGrom who failed to get another win after tossing a season high-tying 8.0 innings that also lowered his MLB best ERA to .179.

Callaway added, “We need to win games when Jacob deGrom pitches.” However, Jose Bautista has also become a major part of a Mets offense that has trouble scoring runs and also getting wins at home. The Mets also have handled Tampa Bay in interleague play, winning five of their last seven.

Bautista, who may not be a Met much longer, is not concerned. He is signed to the end of the season and the Mets are expected to trade away the veterans and look to get younger and more athletic before the July 31 trade deadline.

“You enjoy putting them away,” he said about being the hero Friday night. “Happy to get the opportunity. Got a good pitch to hit.”

NOTES: Asdrubal Cabrera, another of the Mets veterans and considered a first half valuable player, could also be out the door and in a Mets uniform at Citi Field for the final time before the All-Star break. He drove in a run and has 49 RBI on the season which are two shy of his career best before the All-Star break…

Rays’ Willy Adames, 1-for-4 with a home run off deGrom has hit .294 with a double, two home runs, and five RBI in his last 11 games.

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About Rich Mancuso

Established sports journalist and educator. Contact Rich at [email protected]

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