By John Schweibacher
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After being swept by the NL West-leading Dodgers in their four-game series in Los Angeles, the New York Mets swept the last-place Giants in the three-game weekend set in San Francisco.
The Mets defeated the Giants 8-2 on Sunday afternoon to complete the sweep at AT&T Park. It was the first time the Mets swept the Giants in San Francisco on the same road trip that they were swept in L.A.
In 1979 and 2013, the Mets did sweep series on the road against the Giants and were swept in Los Angeles, but not during the same trip.
Rene Rivera hit two of the Mets’ four home runs in Sunday’s win. The only other Mets catcher to hit two home runs in a game against the Giants in San Francisco was Todd Hundley, who homered twice in a 14-5 victory at Candlestick Park on May 18, 1996.
The Mets took the middle game of the three-game set in San Francisco 5-2 on Saturday afternoon. Jacob DeGrom went eight innings for the win, becoming the first pitcher in 2017 to throw 25 innings over three starts.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, only three other Mets pitchers since 1988 have put together three straight starts of eight or more innings, allowing one or no runs: Frank Viola in April 1991, Bret Saberhagen in April/May 1992 and Pedro Martinez in May/June 2005.
Tom Seaver (June 1975) and Dwight Gooden (September 1985) are the only Mets starters to have five such starts in a row, the most in club history. Jon Matlack is the only other Mets pitcher besides Seaver and Gooden to have as many as four in a row.
On Friday night, the Mets scored six runs with six extra-base hits in the second inning of their 11-4 victory over the Giants. Elias noted that it tied the most extra-base hits the Mets had in a single inning in franchise history. The Mets also had six extra-base hits in in the fifth inning of a 15-2 win at Cincinnati on April 28, 1997, and in the second inning of a 7-4 victory at Montreal on July 22, 1999.
On Thursday night in Los Angeles, the Dodgers’ 6-3 win gave them their first four-game sweep of the Mets in 38 years (12 series). The Dodgers hit three home runs in the win, giving them 15 in the series.
It was the most home runs the Mets have allowed in one series, surpassing the 14 hit by Detroit in a three-game series at Tiger Stadium from June 30 to July 1, 1997.
Curtis Granderson hit a leadoff home run for the second straight night to give the Mets an early 1-0 lead over the Dodgers in the loss. According to Elias, Granderson is the second Mets player with a leadoff home run in back-to-back team games, joining Kaz Matsui, who did it against the Rockies at Shea Stadium on May 22nd and 23rd, 2004.
Granderson’s leadoff home runs each came off left-handed pitchers (Rich Hill on Wednesday and Hyun-Jin Ryu on Thursday).
Elias notes that Granderson is only the second left-handed batter in the modern era (since 1900) to hit leadoff home runs in back-to-back games off two lefty pitchers. The other was Rick Monday, who did it on June 25-26, 1976, for the Cubs at Wrigley Field against Mets lefties Matlack and Jerry Koosman. Like Granderson, Monday’s home runs both came in losses as the Mets won both games, 7-4 and 10-2.
Cody Bellinger, Corey Seager and Yasmani Grandal all had multiple home run games vs. the Mets in the Dodgers’ four-game sweep.
Prior to last week, there had only been eight players who hit two or more home runs in a game against the Mets at Dodger Stadium:
• 5/29/66: Jim Lefebvre
• 9/13/66: Lou Johnson
• 8/30/75: Ron Cey
• 8/31/75: Ron Cey
• 6/14/78: Steve Garvey
• 8/19/00: Gary Sheffield
• 8/20/00: Todd Hundley
• 6/7/06: Rafael Furcal
Happy Recap: Rafael Montero. The Mets right-hander earned his first major league win since 2014 by allowing just one run in 5 2/3 innings of work in Sunday’s 8-2 win against the Giants at AT&T Park.
Nine Miles of Rough Road: 10 Below. The Mets’ four losses in Los Angeles dropped them to 10 games under .500 for the first time since September 1, 2014.