NEW YORK -- Credit the bright yellow parakeet, fluttering near the backstop. Credit the raccoon the Mets found in the weight room. Or just credit the type of baseball this team is playing on a daily basis, establishing its best record ever through 59 home games. To further that trend, Jacob deGrom fired seven shutout innings Wednesday, Yoenis Cespedes hit his first homer with New York and the Mets earned a record-breaking 3-0 win over the Rockies to improve to 41-18 at Citi Field.
With three straight victories over Colorado, the Mets have won six in a row at home and 10 of 12 overall. Their record at Citi is a game better than the 2000 pennant-winning Mets, who previously held the franchise's best home mark through 59 games.
With nods to former Rockies Michael Cuddyer and Juan Uribe, who each drove in runs and recorded their 1,500th career hits, the protagonist in this one was deGrom. Coming off two relatively pedestrian starts, deGrom retired 12 of the first 14 batters he faced, striking out six of them. He whiffed 10 overall in lowering his ERA to 2.03.
"The question's been asked all summer about why we're playing so well at home," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "I'll tell you, it starts on the mound. These guys like pitching here."
Though Rockies starter Jorge De La Rosa was also sharp, Uribe doubled home a run in the fourth and Cuddyer followed with his 1,500th career hit, an RBI single up the middle. Two innings later it was Uribe's turn, beating out an infield grounder for hit No. 1,500.
De La Rosa lasted six innings, allowing just the two runs on four hits and striking out seven. The Mets added an insurance run in the eighth on Cespedes' first homer as a Met.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED 1,500 times two: Starting his second consecutive game since returning from the disabled list, Cuddyer rapped his 1,500th career hit back up the middle to plate Uribe with the Mets' second run in the fourth. Two innings later, Uribe hustled down the line for his own 1,500th hit, narrowly beating De La Rosa to the bag. More >
Go! Go! … Should've gone: The Rockies had runners at first and third in the fifth when De La Rosa pushed a safety-squeeze bunt to third baseman Uribe. DJ LeMahieu, who had doubled and stolen third, came halfway down the third-base line and hesitated when Uribe faked his way. Uribe, however, threw to first, and LeMahieu -- despite seemingly having time to score -- scurried back to third. Charlie Blackmon struck out to end a rare threat against deGrom, but LeMahieu and Rockies manager Walt Weiss said there was enough doubt to make the decision to return to third defensible.
"I might've been able to go right after he threw it, but with Charlie coming up next I didn't really want to give up an out right there," LeMahieu said. "He looked me back right when I wanted to go. It was a nice play by him."
deGrominant: Still hitting 95 mph consistently in the seventh, deGrom slowed it down to 81 on a curveball to whiff Matt McBride with his 103rd and final pitch of the night. Coming off two relatively pedestrian outings, deGrom struck out 10 over seven shutout innings. More >
A Cespedes for the rest of us: Cespedes' first homer as a Met was a no-doubter to right-center field, which Statcast™ projected to land 408 feet away. That gave the Mets a 3-0 lead in the eighth, prompting a lighthearted moment in the postgame clubhouse. Cespedes said he wore a bright yellow sleeve on his arm because he "wanted to look like the bird" that television cameras caught fluttering near the backstop. More >
"We got some guys on via the walk, but he's tough to hit, tough to square up. It's tough to put hitters together against him. He walked four, but he was real good tonight." -- Weiss, on deGrom
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Wednesday's loss was the Rockies' ninth straight at Citi Field, and their lack of success centers on one man -- their former shortstop, Troy Tulowitzki, now with the Blue Jays. Before the skid, the Rockies had won eight straight at the Mets' home. A .438 hitter in his games at Citi Field, Tulowitzki dealt with frequent injuries while with the Rockies and played in just two of their games during the losing streak.
When Michael McKenry walked in the second inning, it snapped a streak of 30 consecutive innings without a free pass by Mets pitching. The staff does, however, own an active season-high streak of 23 consecutive scoreless innings.
WHAT'S NEXT Rockies: Righty Eddie Butler (3-9, 5.50 ERA) will be looking for his first win since May 30 when he faces the Mets in the series finale Thursday at 10:10 a.m. MT.
Mets: The Mets hope to have first baseman Lucas Duda, who sat out the past two games due to back stiffness, back in the lineup for their series finale against the Rockies. Rookie Noah Syndergaard will look to rebound from his four-inning, five-run loss to the Rays last weekend in the 12:10 p.m. ET game at Citi Field.