deGrom battles to pass tough test at Coors

Mets starter holds Rox to 3 runs in first start at Colorado

deGrom battles to pass tough test at Coors

DENVER -- Jacob deGrom didn't have his best stuff Sunday afternoon, and to hear him tell it, he hasn't been at his best all season. But for 6 1/3 innings, he had enough to continue his dominance over the Rockies, showing his capacity to be a double threat -- on the mound and at the plate.

The Mets will take deGrom at less than his best as long as he keeps on his current pace, going 3-1 with a 2.50 ERA through six starts. He gave up three runs on four hits and three walks Sunday, leaving the game with a 3-2 lead and watching the Rockies steal it, 4-3, with a pinch-hit homer immediately after he left.

"He competes on the mound," manager Terry Collins sad. "He had to work hard. Early in the game he made some pretty good pitches, but he was up in the zone a lot. I thought he settled down pretty good, and at the end it looked like he was getting tired. In the inning before he had some deep counts with some guys. This is a tough place to pitch. You can't make too many mistakes, and you can't put guys on. They come back to haunt you."

deGrom was 2-0 with 15 scoreless innings against the Rockies coming into his first game at Coors Field. Colorado was happy to see him go, as the first batter reliever Jim Henderson faced, Ryan Raburn, went deep for a go-ahead, two-run homer. deGrom was on the hook for one of the runs -- a 12-pitch walk to DJ LeMahieu that helped hasten his exit.

"It was all right," deGrom said of his performance. "I still don't feel very comfortable on the mound. My front side's not getting up where I want it to. I kept us in that ball game. That was my main goal. It's a tough place to pitch, but overall I felt decent."

The Mets established a two-run lead in the third that held up until deGrom left, and the pitcher played a key role in the rally, plating Eric Campbell from second with a single up the middle, then scoring on Michael Conforto's base knock to left.

deGrom's RBI single

"They didn't give me the bunt there," deGrom said. "They showed some confidence that I could swing it, even though I haven't been. In that situation I was just trying to hit a ground ball to the right side to move the guy, and luckily it went through."

Owen Perkins is a contributor to MLB.com who covered the Mets. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.