NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The Mets have a rich and proud history… of opponents who have crushed New York pitching over the years. Names like Willie Stargell, Chase Utley, and Chipper Jones come to mind when you say the phrase “Met killer.”
You can officially add the Cardinals’ Paul DeJong to that list.
DeJong tagged the Mets again, hitting a tie-breaking home run in the eighth inning that sent the St. Louis Cardinals over New York 4-3 on Sunday.
DeJong is 30-for-83 (.361) with nine homers and 10 doubles against the Mets in his career so far.
The Cardinals won despite getting outhit 10-3. They took three of four in the series, and DeJong homered in each victory.
Paul Goldschmidt hit a prodigious home run off the facade of the second deck and scored twice for St. Louis.
Robinson Cano returned from the injured list and doubled and scored a run, and Dominic Smith had two hits in his first career start in the leadoff spot for New York, which is 5-5 over its last 10 games.
Mets starter Jason Vargas exited in the fourth inning with a cramp in his left calf. He fouled a ball off his foot and was pulled during the at-bat.
The Vargas injury is even more concerning for New York – who just lost Noah Syndergaard to a hamstring injury – as the lefty seemed to have turned around his season. Vargas has delivered four straight good outings before Sunday injury. It’s unclear if the 36-year-old will be forced to miss a start.
DeJong connected off Chris Flexen (0-3) for a solo drive. He has six home runs in 11 games at Citi Field.
New York’s bullpen has allowed 15 earned runs over its last 20 1/3 innings. Flexen has been scored on in each of his three outings. If not for a base running blunder by a Cardinals pitcher Saturday night, the bullpen would have failed to hold a lead in each game of the four-game series with St. Louis.
Andrew Miller (3-2) pitched a scoreless seventh to earn the victory and Carlos Martinez went two innings for his second save.
Pinch-hitter Todd Frazier reached far over the plate and, with one hand, blooped an opposite-field single to right with one out in the Mets ninth. Frazier shared a quick laugh at first base with Martinez, who then got pinch-hitter Wilson Ramos to ground into a game-ending double play.
Goldschmidt’s first-inning homer was the only hit the Cardinals could muster in the first seven innings against Vargas and Wilmer Font.
RHP Noah Syndergaard was placed on the 10-day injured list with a strained right hamstring. He underwent an MRI Sunday morning . OF Brandon Nimmo (neck) has visits scheduled with additional specialists as he continues to deal with a bulging disk.
RHP Zack Wheeler (5-4, 4.87 ERA) looks to bounce back as New York opens a three-game series at NL East-leading Atlanta. Wheeler allowed a career-worst nine runs in 4 2/3 innings against the Yankees on June 11, although only five were earned. He’s opposed by RHP Mike Soroka (7-1, 1.92 ERA), who has not lost since April 18.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)