PHILADELPHIA — Max Scherzer’s unbeaten streak has been broken.
Scherzer allowed three runs on 10 hits, striking out seven, across six innings in the Mets’ 3-2 loss to the Phillies in Game 1 of a doubleheader on Sunday at Citizens Bank Park. The right-hander took his first loss since May 30, 2021, snapping his streak of 24 consecutive unbeaten starts.
But, ask the three-time Cy Young winner and future Hall of Famer, and he will tell you he doesn’t care about the end of his personal accolade, particularly because it means he played a hand in his team’s loss. Scherzer, obsessed with winning, saw the Mets lose Sunday on his start-day for the first time since he joined his new organization.
Scherzer’s uniform whipped in the wind on an especially frigid day in Philly. The wind was blowing in from right field as Mets position players zig-zagged through the dirt and grass to attempt, unsettlingly, to catch pop flys. Despite the brisk conditions, Scherzer removed his sleeves after the fourth inning, perhaps looking to create better luck in his untidy 101-pitch outing.
Sunday was only the third time in the past five seasons that Scherzer allowed double-digit hits. He gave up nine or more hits just once last year, in a Sept. 29 start as a Dodger against the Padres. With the exception of Bryce Harper’s home run in the first inning, the remainder of hits coughed up by Scherzer against the Phillies on Sunday were all singles. Of his 10 hits allowed, five of them were hit with an exit velocity of 77 mph or lower.
Due to the back-to-back rainouts on Friday and Saturday, the Mets ace was pitching seven days after his most recent start — also against the Phillies at Citi Field last Sunday.
Starling Marte, gripping a pink bat in honor of Mother’s Day that will be auctioned off to benefit multiple organizations toward the fight against breast cancer, helped put the Mets on the board in the sixth inning of Game 1. His double to left field in that frame was his fifth consecutive hit, dating back to Thursday. Marte has certainly been a productive base runner for the Mets, but he’s still itching to get hot at the plate. The outfielder entered the day batting .262 with a .692 OPS.
Phillies right-hander Kyle Gibson kept the Mets mostly in check through six innings, allowing two earned runs on six hits across 72 pitches in Game 1. Closer Corey Knebel, whom the Mets pummeled for three runs on four hits during Thursday night’s thrilling ninth-inning comeback, was able to retire the side on Sunday and shut the door on the Amazin’s.