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Mets lose sixth game in a row

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It already feels like ancient history, but the woebegone Mets had a rebirth towards the end of July and extending into mid-August. With a 46-55 record, the Mets won seven games in a row from July 26 through August 1, then went on an eight-game heater August 3-10. After stumbling a bit against the Braves, they went back on a five-game winning streak August 17-22, reaching a season-high seven games over .500 at 67-60. Mickey Callaway’s motley crew, once a trainwreck, was officially back on track.

Some cautioned against buying into the hot streak too heavily, pointing out that the Mets’ hot streak featured many wins against subpar competition like the Padres (61-71), Pirates (56-77), White Sox (60-72), Marlins (47-85), and Royals (47-87). Others countered by saying that you still have to win those games. The Phillies, for example, haven’t even been able to beat the lowly Marlins, going 7-9 against them this season.

It appears the Mets’ hot streak wasn’t terribly informative after all. The club was swept by the Braves at home over the weekend, then got swept at home by the Cubs, culminating in a disappointing 4-1 loss tonight to run the losing streak to six games. The Mets are nearly back to .500 at 67-66. They’ve five games out of the second Wild Card with the Phillies and Brewers ahead of them and the Diamondbacks even with them. The Giants are also within striking distance.

On Thursday night, ace Jacob deGrom was on the hook for four runs over seven innings. Three of the runs scored on a back-breaking three-run home run by Victor Caratini in the top of the seventh. Tyler Chatwood, Brandon Kintzler, and Craig Kimbrel shut the Mets down from there, with the only base runner reaching on a Kris Bryant error. This came a day after Noah Syndergaard‘s clunker in which he allowed 10 runs (nine earned) in three innings of work. The Mets fought back but ultimately lost 10-7.

The Mets’ schedule doesn’t get any easier from here:

  • 3 @ Phillies (69-63)
  • 3 @ Nationals (74-58)
  • 3 vs. Phillies
  • 4 vs. Diamondbacks (67-66)
  • 3 vs. Dodgers (88-47)
  • 3 @ Rockies (59-75)
  • 3 @ Reds (63-69)
  • 4 vs. Marlins (47-85)
  • 3 vs. Braves (81-54)

20 of their 29 remaining games will come against teams .500 or better. Nine of those 29 games will be against teams that are currently at least 10 games over .500.

Ex-Angels employee charged in overdose death of Tyler Skaggs

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A former Angels employee has been charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl in connection with last year’s overdose death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs, prosecutors in Texas announced Friday.

Eric Prescott Kay was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, and made his first appearance Friday in federal court, according to Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kay was communications director for the Angels.

Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in the Dallas area July 1, 2019, before the start of what was supposed to be a four-game series against the Texas Rangers. The first game was postponed before the teams played the final three games.

Skaggs died after choking on his vomit with a toxic mix of alcohol and the powerful painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone in his system, a coroner’s report said. Prosecutors accused Kay of providing the fentanyl to Skaggs and others, who were not named.

“Tyler Skaggs’s overdose – coming, as it did, in the midst of an ascendant baseball career – should be a wake-up call: No one is immune from this deadly drug, whether sold as a powder or hidden inside an innocuous-looking tablet,” Nealy Cox said.

If convicted, Kay faces up to 20 years in prison. Federal court records do not list an attorney representing him, and an attorney who previously spoke on his behalf did not immediately return a message seeking comment.