Banged-up Jeff McNeil has another big night for Mets

Perhaps that is the answer for Jeff McNeil: You don’t should run very arduous in the event you’re simply circling the bases.

Nursing a fatigued left leg that compelled him out of the lineup final Friday and Saturday, McNeil is clearly not one hundred pc, however his bat regarded fairly wholesome once more as he homered and doubled whereas extending his hitting streak to a career-high 14 video games within the Mets’ 12-5 loss to the Braves at Citi Area on Tuesday evening.

“He’s hitting in every single place, from line to line proper now,” supervisor Luis Rojas mentioned after McNeil went 2-for-5 with a house run to right-center and a double down the left-field line. “His energy — he’s trusting it to the massive elements of the sphere or the gaps.”

McNeil, who pushed himself Monday in making certain he reached second on an off-the-wall double, then had to get replaced by a pinch runner, had a pleasant recreation Tuesday. Even an awesome recreation, nevertheless, wouldn’t have mattered because the Braves blasted Jerad Eickhoff instantly, draining any drama from the consequence by the fourth inning. Nonetheless, in a Mets lineup that has dipped in manufacturing lately, McNeil is displaying indicators he’s able to carrying the membership, as he has in spurts since he got here up in 2018.

Jeff McNeil celebrates with Brandon Drury after hitting a two-run homer in the Mets' 12-5 loss to the Braves.
Jeff McNeil celebrates with Brandon Drury after hitting a two-run homer within the Mets’ 12-5 loss to the Braves.

Since going 0-for-4 on July 1, McNeil has fattened his batting common from .226 to .271. Throughout this 14-game tear, the 29-year-old is 17-for-47 (.362) with two homers, 4 doubles and one unhealthy leg.

The Mets have been obscure concerning the points which might be affecting the identical leg he injured in Might, when cramping grew to become a hamstring pressure that saved him out about 5 weeks. They’ve mentioned his leg is fatigued, and he was eliminated after his double Monday, which drove in the only run of a 1-0 Mets victory. He additionally had pinch hit an RBI double in his return Sunday, too, underscoring how vital the No. 2 hitter is to the lineup.

On Tuesday, the Mets weren’t shut sufficient for his bat to matter, but it surely nonetheless represented a uncommon brilliant spot.

Going through Charlie Morton, whom the Mets had not been capable of contact this season (a 1.89 ERA in 19 innings getting into play), McNeil turned a fifth-inning, 96 mph fastball right into a two-run shot into the Braves’ bullpen in right-center. That made a dent in what had been a 10-1 recreation and allowed McNeil to coast, quite than dash, on the basepaths.

McNeil ought to have tacked on one other hit, however second baseman Ozzie Albies made a trampoline-like leap to rob him within the seventh. Within the ninth, McNeil completely positioned one down the left-field line, bouncing it into the stands for a double. In doing so, he grew to become the 56th participant in franchise historical past to report no less than 100 multi-hit video games with the Mets — in simply his 310th recreation.

With a bit greater than two months left to the common season, the Mets are cognizant of McNeil’s leg, which remains to be hampering him.

“We’re going to maintain speaking to him, and I’ll hold having my eyes on him,” Rojas mentioned.

The Mets want him in an offense that has scored 17 runs in six video games. It’s a totally different lineup with out Francisco Lindor and with a struggling Michael Conforto, who went 2-for-4 Tuesday in an encouraging signal.

Pete Alonso had carried the membership popping out of the All-Star break, and McNeil is displaying he can carry some that slack, too — no less than on days when the pitching permits the bats to matter. | Banged-up Jeff McNeil has one other huge evening for Mets

Huynh Nguyen

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