It took less than an inning for the New York Mets to completely implode in Sunday’s afternoon game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. The NL East team unraveled after just a single play in the bottom of the first.
After Mets starter Taijuan Walker had already given up three runs to the Pirates and recorded just a single out, Pittsburgh’s Kevin Newman hit a dribbler down the third baseline. The ball began in foul territory but began to spin fair just as Walker came charging off the mound.
As the Mets pitcher scooped up the soft grounder, he flung the ball over toward his own dugout, but the home plate umpire ruled the hit fair. Chaos ensued as all three Pirates runners on base came around to score before Walker even made a move to go pick to stray ball. Pittsburgh took a 6-0 lead after the debacle.
Immediately, the Mets tried to make their case that the ball was in foul territory when Walker picked it up, but the home plate umpire wasn’t having it. New York’s manager, Luis Rojas, came out of the dugout incensed and started to defend his starting pitcher. However, he bumped into the umpire which led to his ejection.
Take a look at video of the incident, courtesy of Jomboy Media:
Taijuan Walker thinks the ball is foul so he tosses it away and the Pirates end up scoring three runs on an infield dribbler
Mets manager Luis Rojas got ejected immediately as he bumped into the umpire pic.twitter.com/Clb2hNnYnw
— Jomboy Media (@JomboyMedia) July 18, 2021
When all was said and done in the first inning, the Pirates led 6-0. The Mets lost their manager and pulled Walker after he allowed five earned runs and recorded just one out on 35 pitches.
The play will forever live in infamy among Mets fans who saw the travesty as just the latest example of shoddy play by the team. Amidst a collection of injuries to starters, New York has lost four of its last five to Pittsburgh, one of the worst teams in the National League. The Mets have stumbled back to 47-42, now only two games up in the division.
Unless something dramatic happens in Sunday’s ballgame, New York appears to be headed for another loss.
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