Newest Amazin' Ramos Hold Off Rangers Rally • Latino Sports


Newest Amazin’ Ramos Hold Off Rangers Rally


Credit: MLB

Credit: MLB

Flushing, NY – There is that mentality for a pitcher coming out of the bullpen as the setup guy or closer. Newly acquired righthander AJ Ramos of the Mets was in both roles the past few years with the Miami Marlins and in his first save opportunity with New York he got the job done Tuesday night at Citi Field.

The Mets with three home run balls and Chris Flexin getting his first major league win all led to Ramos in the ninth inning as they took the first of a brief two-game interleague series with a 5-4 win over the Texas Rangers.

When you looked at the script before the season, a strength of the Mets was supposed to be their bullpen. Between various injuries, including losing closer Jeurys Familia, manager Terry Collins has gone with the mix-and-match theory. Addison Reed was traded at the deadline to the Red Sox for pitching prospects and then Ramos came to New York after having success with the Marlins out of the bullpen.

Ramos in the ninth inning was consistent with a slider, change, and fastball. The one hit was a home run ball that Robinson Chirinos hit down the left field line for his 13th off the first pitch delivered from Ramos. From there it was Ramos closing it out in his new role.

A new role for Ramos, at least for now. Familia has started to throw down in Port St. Lucie Florida and is expected to be a part of rehab games in the next week. The Mets expect their closer to return within the next two weeks if everything goes well on the mound for Familia.

“He threw 94, better slider,” manager Terry Collins said about Ramos. “Maybe it was the fact it was a save situation.”  His first two appearances on the mound for the Mets were not the best way to start with a new team. In three innings, Ramos gave up three runs on four hits.

Obvious, with 20 saves as a Marlin that Ramos would prefer to close games.  He said, “It’s a different type of mentality.” And he admits that not closing, “For some reason my numbers are not as good.”

For now, Collins will continue to devise the proper role for Ramos. The Mets had the lead early on home run balls from Michael Conforto, his 23rd to lead off the Mets first. Yoenis Cespedes hit his 12th with another solo shot that went to left in the first and Travis d’Arnaud hit his 10th with one on in the second inning.

A.J. Griffin, a replacement starter gave up the home runs and got the loss for Texas. The Cespedes home run was his first at Citi Field since early June and since the all-star break is batting .289 with six doubles, two triples, three home runs and 12 RBI.

Texas,  third in runs scored in the American League is also tied for last in hitting with  Oakland but they also hit three home runs. Adrian Beltre, newest member of the 3,000 hit club hit his 11th in the sixth inning.

But the Rangers once again came up a run short. This has not been their season and pitching has been part of the struggle.  Said Beltre, “We had our chances to come back. Had some good at bats but were not able to do it.”

But the Mets were able to get it done Tuesday night. And with Jerry Blevins also coming out of the pen, striking out three in 1.2 innings, the anticipated return of Familia provides a nice outlook for the Mets next season.

“Hope it leads to a lot more,” Ramos said. It should, as the Mets expect their new bullpen acquisition to play a major role in their plans for next season.

About Rich Mancuso

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

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