Boo Who? Báez Says Mets Flashing Thumbs Down on Fickle Followers | Sports activities Information
From JERRY BEACH, Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) – Javier Báez and his teammates from the New York Mets turned the boos at Citi Field into cheers this weekend – and then gave fans a thumbs down.
Báez started a 444-foot home run on Sunday with a 9-4 win over the Washington Nationals. He later said Mets players showed the thumbs-down gesture after being hit in response to fans mocking the club during a tough August.
“If we don’t succeed, we get booed,” said Báez. “So they get booed when we succeed.”
The Mets are 8-19 this month, falling from NL East to third place, 7 1/2 games behind the leading Atlanta Braves.
Báez, his good friend Francisco Lindor and Kevin Pillar were all seen showing the thumbs-down sign after Sunday’s hits.
Báez, who beats .210 with 22 strikeouts in 62 at-bats since he was taken over by the Chicago Cubs on July 30, said he didn’t mind the booing but it was disheartening.
“I love the fans and I like to play for the fans,” said Báez. “But we can’t have our fans against us.”
Manager Luis Rojas, who heard chants of “Fire Rojas” during a loss to the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday night, said he didn’t know what the thumbs-down mean.
“I didn’t know the intention was to give back to the fans,” said Rojas. “We want to win for the organization. We want to win for ourselves, we want to win for our front office, our owner and we want to win for our fan base. So this should be the focus. “
Rojas said Báez’s reaction could be part of the adjustment process after the first trade of his career. Lindor, who signed a 10-year extension before playing a game with the Mets, and Pillar are also in their early years in New York.
“I think it’s something he’s probably getting used to – it’s the first time he’s wearing a different uniform,” said Rojas. “That’s probably why he (and) shares it. It’s a learning experience. There are different guys who probably thought so when they came here and probably didn’t appear right away. But they have learned to deal with it and know where the fan base comes from. “
Lindor forced a run scoring block and hit a double with two runs, and new leadoff hitter Jonathan Villar hit a homer with two runs as the Mets won the last two games of the three-game sert. It was her first straight win since she won three of the Nationals on May 10-12. August had won.
The Mets have made 14 runs since Rojas reshuffled the line-up on Saturday. New York has stolen two bases in each of the last two games, the first time since Aug. 18-19. June 2019.
“We tried Villar at the front yesterday and we tried again today and it worked well,” said Rojas. “I’m just happy that we can create more situations to get runs.”
Villar missed the cycle twice and scored three times. He and Brandon Nimmo, who moved up from leadoff to second place on Saturday, hit the base seven times in 10 record appearances.
Báez’s Homer gave the Mets a 3-2 lead in the fourth inning.
Pete Alonso had an RBI single among his three hits and Dominic Smith delivered a pinch-hit single to the point.
Josh Bell homered twice and Juan Soto scored for Washington as well. Those were the Nationals’ only three hits.
Tylor Megill (2-3) allowed two runs on one hit – a homer in the fourth inning, two runs from Bell – over five innings.
Soto homed Aaron Loup ahead of the sixth – the first homer passed to a left-handed by the Mets Lefty since joining Corey Dickerson of Tampa Bay in 2017.
Bell homered again in the eighth. The two-home game was Bell’s first game of the season and the sixth of his career.
Fedde allowed five earned runs in eight hits, including the Báez and Villar homers, in 5 1/3 innings.
“The throw against Baez and the one against Villar were just pretty bad pitches in general,” said Fedde, who spun and crouched as soon as Báez had contact with his homer.
The Nationals have announced that they will be calling back catcher Keibert Ruiz, who became their top prospect ahead of Monday night’s home game against the Philadelphia Phillies after hitting the Los Angeles Dodgers in Max Scherzer-Trea Turner’s blockbuster deal last month was acquired.
Ruiz, 23, scored 0.308 with five homers and 14 RBIs for Triple-A Rochester.
“We have a feeling he’s ready to play up here and watch him play,” said Nationals manager Dave Martinez. “We’re all excited. He is part of our future here. “
“We’ll see how it all plays out, but we want to give him the opportunity to play,” he said. “We’ll play it as often as possible.”
Josh Reddick, who signed a minor league contract with the Mets on August 13, opted out and was released on Sunday. The 34-year-old Reddick scored .258 in 54 games for the Arizona Diamondbacks that season before hitting 0.182 in 11 games for Triple-A Syracuse.
Mets: C Tomas Nido (left thumb) missed a second game in a row, leaving Patrick Mazeika as the Mets’ only healthy catcher. Mazeika was taken care of by the coaches after taking a foul ball off his knee in matchday eight, but stayed in the game.
Nationals: RHP Josiah Gray (0-1, 3.75 ERA), acquired with Ruiz from the Dodgers, will throw him on Monday when he makes his sixth start for Washington in the opener of a three-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Mets: After a non-working Monday. RHP Taijuan Walker (7-9, 3.82 ERA) will “relieve” his teammate Marcus Stroman and RHP Trevor Williams (4-2, 4.54 ERA) will start the second game of the unusual setup against the Miami Marlins on Tuesday. Stroman was knocked out only once before the nine innings game between the teams was suspended on April 11 due to rain. The second game will be seven innings.
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