Remembering Mets History (2015) Mets Start their N.L. Championship Run in D.C.

Monday April 6th, 2015: As the 2015 opened up, there was much anticipation for the Mets to have a winning season. The pressure was on to make the playoffs and satisfy the long suffering but faithful fan base.

Also, many of the jobs of the management folks were in jeopardy. The Mets had to prove themselves, it was now or never & if it wasn't now who knows what would come of the near future.

Manager Terry Collins chose to give Bartolo Colon the ball for Opening Day in Washington D.C. against the NL Eastern Division favorites, the Washington Nationals.

The criticisms started as soon as Collins named his starter, but he felt Colon deserved the ball after being one of just 11 N.L. pitchers to win 15 games or more. 

It was agreed Matt Harvey coming off Tommy John surgery was to be handled with kit gloves as to limit his pitch count. Rookie of the Year Jacob deGrom would start the second game & get the ball for the home Opener the following week.

A sellout crowd of excited Nationals fans all dressed in red came out to Nationals Park to see the Mets Bartolo Colon take on the Nat's new star pitcher Maz Scherzer. Scherzer was coming fresh off two straight seasons of leading the American League in victories pitching for the Detroit Tigers. He had signed a big off season deal of $210 million for seven years to pitch in D.C. 

As for the Mets, they gave everyone a peek of what was to come in the 2015 season.

Both starting pitchers held their opponents down scoreless through the first three innings. In the home 4th, the Nat's slugger Bryce Harper hit the first of what was to be his 42 HR season, giving the Nat's the 1-0 lead.

It was all they were score get on the day, as Bartolo Colon would pitch six innings allowing just the run on three hits, while striking out eight. Bart would strike out eight or more batters six times on the season in 31 starts.

As for the Mets scoring, in the tip of the 6th with two outs Curtis Granderson drew a walk & David Wright reached on an infield error by Ian Desmond on a pop up.  Lucas Duda delivered a single to right field bringing in both runners giving the Mets the 2-1 lead off Scherzer.

In the top of the 7th with one out, Juan Lagares reached on another Ian Desmond error, this one on a throw to first trying to hurry up to catch the speedy Lagares. Travis d'Arnaud then tripled to straight away center scoring Lagares making it 3-1 Mets, which was to be the final score.

Scherzer would pitch into the 8th inning going 7.2 innings allowing three runs on four hits with two walks & eight strike outs taking the loss. He would go 14-12 with a 2.79 ERA that year for the second place National (83-79).

The Mets bullpen came on with Carlos Torres retiring the side in order in the 7th. Jeurys Familia, who at the time was not yet the teams dominant closer, putting in a scoreless 8th innings. He struck out Matt den Dekker & Michael Taylor to start the inning. 

In the 9th it was Jerry Blevins coming in to retire Bryce Harper on a line drive to deep right & then Buddy Carlyle got the final two outs to earn the save.

It was just a taste of how the Mets would torture the Nationals during the year. They would win 11 of the 19 games head-to-head, but more importantly take eight of the last nine meetings in August & September overtaking them to win the NL Eastern Division. 

The 2015 Mets would then beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLDS & The Chicago Cubs in the NLCS getting to the World Series to earn the title, National League Champions.


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