Cliff Lee, coming off three straight shutouts versus the Marlins, Cardinals and Red Sox, took the loss Sunday as the Blue Jays beat the Phillies 7-4.
Lee had his scoreless streak snapped at 34 innings when Rajai Davis tripled and then scored on a groundout in the third inning of the game. The Blue Jays went on to add single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to chip away at what had been an early 4-0 lead for the Phillies.
Suddenly, in the eighth inning, it was bombs away. Lee, who hadn’t allowed a homer in six stats since May 31, gave up three in a span of five batters. Eric Thames and Jose Bautista went back-to-back to start the frame, and Edwin Encarnacion added a two-run shot with one out.
The Blue Jays held on from there, sending Lee to his first loss since that aforementioned May 31 outing against the Nationals. He had been 5-0 since.
Lee ended up with nine strikeouts and no walks on the day, but all seven runs, six of which were earned, were charged to him. He gave up three homers in a start for the first time since allowing four in a loss to the Orioles last Aug. 21.
Bautista added to his major league lead with 27 homers. He went deep in all three games of the series against the Phillies.
Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman extended his hitting streak to 30 games with a single to center field in the bottom of the sixth inning of Wednesday night’s win against the Phillies. Prior to that at-bat, he had grounded out, been hit by a pitch, and walked.
Freeman entered Wednesday night batting .382/.477/.673 with 11 doubles, seven home runs, 27 RBI, and 24 runs scored over his past 29 games. Though his numbers are lacking compared to National League MVP Award favorite Kris Bryant, Freeman will get some top-five votes. On the season, he entered Wednesday hitting .307/.404/.576 with 33 home runs, 88 RBI, and 99 runs scored in 673 plate appearances.
Freeman’s 30-game hitting streak is the longest such streak in the majors this season, according to ESPN Stats & Info. He has also reached base safely in 46 consecutive games.
Mets manager Terry Collins has been scheming out his rotation for the final few days of the season. As ESPN’s Adam Rubin reports, Bartolo Colon may start on short rest against the Phillies on Friday since he threw just 47 pitches in Monday’s loss to the Marlins.
Collins also said that if the Mets clinch a Wild Card spot prior to Sunday’s game against the Phillies, Noah Syndergaard will be limited to only 25 pitches in his start. He would then start the Wild Card game for the Mets. If Syndergaard is needed to pitch a full game against the Phillies, it sounds like Colon would start the Wild Card game, though Collins did not specify.
The Mets are limping to the finish line, having lost five starters in Steven Matz, Jacob deGrom Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, and Jon Niese. They’ve also withstood injuries to David Wright, Wilmer Flores, Neil Walker, and Lucas Duda.