Remembering Mets History (2023) Max Scherzer Ejected for Sticky Substance & Nimmo's Five Hit Day in L.A.

 Wednesday April 19th, 2023: Buck Showalter's Mets (11-7) were trying to split a three-game set in LA.A. against Dave Roberts Dodgers (9-9) after having won the first five of six games on a nine-game California road trip. 

Both teams had been suffering from players on the injured list, the Mets pitching & Dodgers in both pitching as well as position players.

This was the Mets first matchup against their old teammate Noah Syndergaard (0-2) who had departed after the 2021 season. Noah no longer a blazing fastball pitcher had made adjustments to become a completely different pitcher than what the Mets remembered. The Mets sent their co-ace Max Scherzer (2-1) to the mound in what was to be a memorable game.

In the top of the 1st inning, Brandon Nimmo started out his big day with a leadoff single. He was
erased on a double play, as Noah would hold the Mets scoreless through the first four innings.

In the bottom of the 1st, Max Scherzer wasn't his usual self-starting out, as he gave up a leadoff single to James Outman & then issued two walks to load the bases with one out. But Max struck out Jason Heyward & got Miguel Vargas to ground out to Bret Baty at third to end the threat.

As the bottom of the 3rd inning Umpire Phil Cuzzi told Scherzer his hand & glove were too sticky from the rosin. He had him wash his hands & use a new glove, which Max did do. As the bottom of the 4th inning began, Cuzzi's noticed the stickiness of Scherzer's hand again & told home plate umpire Dan Bellino to inspect it. 

Quotes- Dan Bellino; " It was far more than we had ever seen before on a pitcher in live action. And we understand the repercussions of removing a pitcher from the game, we take that very seriously. And with the training that we've been given by MLB to check to make sure that it's not legal substance this was clearly something that went too far over the line".

Triva: Two other MLB pitchers have been suspended since the sticky rule began in 2021 & both times Phil Cuzzi was the umpire.

Quotes- Max Scherzer: " He said my hands were too sticky. I said Phil that's sweat & rosin. Sweat & rosin I kept repeating. I swear on my life that's sweat & rosin. I knew I was going to get checked. Like I said I'd have to be an absolute idiot to use anything else."

Scherzer was ejected from the game & now faces a possible ten game suspension. 

Buck Showalter brought in Jimmy Yacabonis to pitch for Scherzer. After getting the first out he gave up a double to Jason Heyward, a single to Miguel Vargas & then a sac-fly line drive to David Peralta as L.A. went up 1-0. He got out of the inning retiring Luke Williams on a grounder to third.

In the top of the 5th, Syndergaard started the inning by striking out Bret Baty. Francisco Alvarez then reached on an infield single, that Max Muncy made a fine play on behind the foul line, but the throw was too far away to make an out on. 

Five Hit Day for Nimmo: Then the hot hitting Brandon Nimmo hit his first HR of the year, putting the Mets up 2-1 as he collected his second hit of the day. Nimmo now had ten RBIs on the young season, third on the club behind Francisco Lindor & Pete Alonso. Nimmo was 3-3 against Noah, having singled in the 1st inning & again in the 3rd inning. Nimmo would collect singled in the 7th inning & 9th inning as well for his second career five hit game.

Jimmy Yacabonis got the Mets to the 6th inning, as he allowed just the run on the two hits. Jeff Brigham got the final out of the 6th inning. Drew Smith pitched a scoreless 7th inning as well.

Noah Syndergaard pitched well against his old team, going six innings allowing two runs on five
hits, two walks & two K's. In the top of the 8th inning with Yency Almonte on the mound, Francisco Lindor led off with a double & Pete Alonso singled to center. 

The Dodger's brought in Justin Bruihl to pitch, he got Jeff McNeil to pop up but then Tommy Pham hit a sac fly to right scoring Lindor for a 3-1 Mets lead.

In the bottom of the 8th, David Roberston walked Freddie Freeman then threw a wild pitch advancing hi to second. JD Martinez who had hit two HRs the previous night, then doubled bringing the Dodgers to within a run. 

In the top of the 9th, with the Dodgers Shelby Miller on the mound, Luis Guillorme drew a one out walk. Brandon Nimmo then collected his fifth hit of the game with a single to left field. Mark Canha who came into the game after Starling Marte exited then doubled bringing in two more Mets runs for a 5-2 lead.

In the bottom of the 9th, Adam Ottavino gave up a leadoff HR to David Peralta then closed out the game getting James outman looking at a third strike. as the Mets too two of three in Los Angeles. 

Jimmy Yacabonis collected his first win & Noah Syndergaard fell to 0-3 taking a loss the first time he faced his former Mets team. After Yacabonis left the mound after the 4th inning it seemed even, he sarcastically teased the umpires looking for a thorough inspection after Max's ejection.


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