MILWAUKEE (CBSNewYork/AP) — Despite Curtis Granderson’s recent power surge, the New York Mets just keep losing.
Granderson’s home run leading off the fourth inning was one of only two hits Jimmy Nelson allowed in eight strong innings as the Milwaukee Brewers extended the Mets’ losing streak to a season-high seven games with a 4-1 victory Wednesday night.
Other than Granderson, who has hit a home run in consecutive games, the Mets are in an offensive funk during their winless eight-game road trip. They came in batting .168 with four home runs and eight runs scored and did little to turn it around against Nelson, who beat them for the first time in three starts.
“We didn’t mount anything today, outside (of) the home run and a double late,” Mets manager Terry Collins said after a brief closed-door meeting with the team after the game. “That’s about it.”
Asked if the front office has done enough, Collins didn’t hesitate.
“I don’t blame anybody,” Collins said. “I’ve never done that. I never will. These are the guys that are here. They’re major league players. We got to play better.”
“I’m not going to point any fingers,” he added. “I write the lineup. It falls on my shoulders. It doesn’t fall on anybody else’s.”
Collins told his players to relax in a pregame meeting. After the loss, he said they need “to rally and get tougher.”
“We’re going through a tough time,” he said. “Unfortunately, every team does it. We’re disappointed where we’re at. But you know what? It’s where we are. So we’ve got to move on. We’re still in the hunt. We win five or six in a row and all of a sudden things look a lot different. We can’t get down about it. We’ve got to move forward.”
After Granderson’s homer, Nelson retired 15 of his last 16 batters. The only blemish was a two-out walk to Granderson.
“When I walked Granderson, I was coming out of it a little bit early,” Nelson said of his delivery. “I was able to make the adjustment as opposed to letting that inning go as it has in the past.”
Nelson (4-8) struck out five and walked one sending the Mets to their longest skid since April 2011. Johnny Monell singled leading off the third for the first hit in the game off the Brewers’ big right-hander.
The Brewers scratched out four runs and 10 hits in six innings off Mets starter Bartolo Colon (9-6) as New York (36-37) slipped below .500 for the first time since a 2-3 record on April 11.
Colon’s first 10 pitches in the bottom half of the first produced four straight hits and spotted Milwaukee two runs. Gerardo Parra whacked the first pitch for a double, moved to third on a single by Jonathan Lucroy and scored on Ryan Braun’s hit. Lucroy came home on Adam Lind’s double.
Braun beat Colon in a race to the bag in the fifth and later scored. Braun smacked a two-out grounder to first baseman Lucas Duda and then outraced Colon to the bag for an infield hit. One step faster and Colon might have escaped. Braun moved to second on Lind’s second hit of the game and then scored on a soft liner by Carlos Gomez over shortstop Wilmer Flores.
Colon went six innings, struck out three and intentionally walked one.
Scooter Gennett hit a solo home run off Colon in the sixth, and Lind, Braun and Gomez each had run-scoring hits.
With the victory, Milwaukee spoiled Colon’s attempt to become the second 10-game winner in the NL, and third in the majors. Pittsburgh’s Gerrit Cole leads with 11 victories and Seattle’s Felix Hernandez has 10.
“It’s really bad and frustrating for everybody, including myself,” Colon said through bullpen coach Ricky Bones. “All we can do is continue to play hard, play hard.”
Francisco Rodriguez pitched the ninth for his 15th save in as many chances. He stranded Ruben Tejada at second on with a two-out double when he struck out Duda on a pitch that bounced in the dirt before catcher Lucroy grabbed it and threw to first for the final out.
“You’ve just got to grind it out,” he said. “Continue to grind out at-bats.”
Mets: Collins gave OF Michael Cuddyer and INF Dilson Herrera the night off to regroup. Cuddyer’s error in the seventh allowed the decisive run to score in Tuesday night’s 3-2 loss to Milwaukee. He is in a 3-for-21 slump, while Herrera is 1 for 17. … 2B Daniel Murphy, on the 15-day DL since June 5 with a left quad strain, went 1-1 with a walk in a rehab assignment for the rookie-level Gulf Coast Mets on Wednesday.
Brewers: LF Khris Davis, on the 15-day DL since May 31 with a torn right meniscus, hit during batting practice. He has been running the bases and throwing. “All signs are very positive,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. No date has been announced for Davis’s return.
Mets: RHP Jacob deGrom (7-5) pitched well in his previous start, but still took the loss. He allowed two runs on four hits in 7 1/3 innings June 19 as the Atlanta Braves beat him 2-1.
Brewers: RHP Taylor Jungmann (2-1) makes his fourth career start and first ever against the Mets. He was recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs on June 9.
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