NEW YORK (AP) — There was a lengthy era in New York Mets history when their fans would dread the opening of the bullpen door. Over the past few months, though, it's become a welcome and reassuring sight with relievers shutting down opponents.
But an unsettling image of past failures echoed at Citi Field on Monday when both Jeurys Familia and closer Jenrry Mejia surrendered key runs that cost the Mets a 4-3 decision to the San Francisco Giants.
Familia, who had gone 13 straight relief appearances since June 30 without permitting an earned run, didn't retire any of the four batters he faced in the seventh inning as the Giants scored the tying run.
Mejia, the Mets' sixth pitcher of the afternoon, had allowed just one earned run since June 18 until he surrendered what proved to be the winning run in the ninth.
"I was real surprised," Mets manager Terry Collins said after the pair couldn't save it for starter Dillon Gee, who left with a 3-2 lead in the sixth.
"But we said, when you talked about how good they were pitching, that they're not perfect, that there's going to be a hiccup here and there. And today was that hiccup," he said.
Familia was greeted by a triple by Hunter Pence that glanced off the glove of leaping left fielder Chris Young in a near-collision with center fielder Juan Lagares at the wall.
After Gregor Blanco walked, Familia threw a wild pitch that made it 3-all. Pablo Sandoval followed with a single, but Lagares nailed Blanco at the plate for the only out Familia got while on the mound.
Sandoval drove in three runs with three hits, and he tagged Mejia (5-4) in the ninth. Blanco singled with two outs and stole second and, after Buster Posey drew his fourth walk of the game, Sandoval sliced an RBI double that bounced into the seats along the left-field line.
San Francisco took three of four while the Mets dropped a home series for the first time since June 10-12 against Milwaukee.
"Not every day's going to be good," Mejia said. "They got Familia and they got me."
Daniel Murphy hit a two-run homer in the first for the Mets and scored on David Wright's infield single in the fifth for a 3-2 lead.
Continue reading this story on the...