DeGrom, backed by 5 Mets HRs, tops Severino, Yankees 8-5
By BEN WALKER, AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) — For Jacob deGrom and the New York Mets, there’s still one prize left in play.
No, not a playoff spot. Those plans were wiped out long ago during a disappointing season.
Rather, the NL Cy Young Award for their ace.
DeGrom kept pumping up his resume, striking out 12 while the Mets backed him in a big way, hitting five home runs to beat Luis Severino and the New York Yankees 8-5 Monday night.
“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think about it,” deGrom said.
A victim of poor run support most of the season, deGrom (7-7) threw 6 2/3 innings and left with a major league-best 1.81 ERA. He allowed two earned runs and exited with a 7-3 lead.
The importance of wins and losses has been diminished over the years in the Cy Young race, with voters often focusing on more advanced numbers. Even so, it felt good for deGrom to at least reach the .500 mark.
“I really haven’t paid that much attention to my record,” he said. “I obviously know what it is.”
DeGrom fanned Austin Romine with his 113th and final pitch, and drew loud cheers from the many Mets fans in attendance.
“It was nice walking off the field and hearing that,” he said.
DeGrom has gone 21 consecutive starts allowing no more than three runs — Dwight Gooden’s 24-game string in 1985 is the team record.
“That’s tremendous. It takes that to get to the level he’s at, which I feel is he’s the best pitcher in the league,” Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. “He doesn’t beat himself. He goes out there and attacks. He’s always on the attack. If he’s going to get beat, they’re going to beat him. And they haven’t beat him yet.”
DeGrom posted his first win in three career starts in the Bronx, and improved to 2-4 overall against the Yankees.
Amed Rosario led off this Subway Series matchup with a drive into the right-field seats and Jose Bautista, Todd Frazier, Brandon Nimmo and Michael Conforto later connected. The club’s best power show since June 2017 sent chants of “Let’s go, Mets!” bouncing all around Yankee Stadium.
The Mets have scored eight runs in each of deGrom’s last two starts, a welcomed change.
“The whole year, he’s been an angel for what we’ve put him through,” Frazier said.
Severino (15-6) was gone a lot earlier. Rather than break a tie with Washington ace Max Scherzer for the most wins in the majors, he stayed stuck in a rut that began before he pitched in the All-Star Game.
“Even though we saw some good velocity numbers, just getting that crispness back where from the side you really notice that slide, the shape on that slider, where that fastball kind of has that ride, that pop at the end. Didn’t seem like it really had that tonight necessarily,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.
Severino was tagged for seven hits, including homers by Rosario and Bautista, and four runs in four innings. The right-hander often seemed out of sorts, stepping behind the mound, taking off his hat and wiping away sweat on a humid evening.
This marked the seventh straight start in which Severino has permitted at least three earned runs — he’s allowed a home run in each of them, a total of 11 during that span.
“Things are not going my way right now, but I will work and try to fix it,” he said.
“I think I keep doing the same mistakes over and over,” Severino added. “I’m missing with my fastball and I need to be more in control.”
Miguel Andujar hit a two-run homer in the Yankees eighth off Seth Lugo. Robert Gsellman worked the ninth for his seventh save.
The city rivals split their six games this year. This was a makeup from a rainout July 22.
Rosario hit his first career leadoff homer and Bautista had a two-run drive in the fourth. Frazier greeted A.J. Cole with a home run in the sixth, and Nimmo and Conforto hit back-to-back drives in the seventh that made it 7-3.
BUNT OR PUTT?
Teeing off its trophy tour, the Ryder Cup stopped by the ballpark, and U.S. captain Jim Furyk was its guardian. Players took photos with him and the shiny gold prize before the game. Boone gave Furyk a customized Yankees jersey and got an official U.S. golf bag in return. Then, with the trophy just a yard away, Furyk threw out the first pitch — the former high school catcher and longtime Pirates fan fired a firm fastball.
“To me, it’s the greatest event in all of golf, so it’s an iconic trophy,” Furyk said. “It debuted in 1927. … It’s also a rare chance for fans to get up and close and near the Ryder Cup.”
The 11-city, 9,000-mile trophy tour will wind up Sept. 16 at Heinz Field for the NFL game between Kansas City and Pittsburgh. The 42nd Ryder Cup takes place Sept. 28-30 at Le Golf National near Paris.
Mets: David Wright went 0 for 1, striking out once and walking once, and played five innings at 3B in his second rehab game with Class A St. Lucie.
Yankees: C Gary Sanchez (groin) arrived from the team complex in Tampa, Florida, and did catching and hitting drills. Boone said the late August/early September projection for Sanchez’s return was “a fair timeline.”
Mets: LHP Jason Vargas (2-8, 8.75 ERA) starts in Baltimore against RHP Andrew Cashner (3-10, 4.83). Vargas’ last start was cut short by rain — he gave up three runs and got just one out vs. Cincinnati.
Yankees: LHP J.A. Happ, who has won both his starts since being acquired from Toronto, pitches at home vs. Tampa Bay.
AP Sports Writer Terrin Waack contributed to this report.
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