ANAHEIM – The offense was thumping, Tylor Megill was throwing high heat, and the good vibes returned to the Mets dugout as they snapped their two-game losing streak.
Brandon Nimmo and Mark Canha led the offensive effort, each posting three-RBI nights, in the Mets’ 7-3 win over the Angels in the series opener on Friday at Angels Stadium. Nimmo snapped his 37-game stretch without a home run by cranking a loud, 401-foot solo shot to center field in the fourth inning. It was his first time leaving the park since April 25 in St. Louis.
“When you get into slumps, you tend to try and do too much,” Nimmo said. “So what I was trying to do was just get something to barrel up, and I did; it had the launch angle. Not trying to do too much there. Just get something started and pass the baton along.”
Nimmo had entered that fourth-inning at-bat hitting just .125 (3-for-24) with nine strikeouts and four hit-by-pitches on this west coast road trip, before finishing Friday night going 2-for-4 with a walk.
Megill’s first start back from the injured list was cut short due to a pitch limit, but the right-hander took a positive step forward in his ongoing journey back from right biceps tendinitis. The Long Beach native had about 40 friends and family members in the stands to watch his return not just to the mound, but back to Southern California. Friday night was the first time he pitched in front of his parents, locally, since he was in college.
“It was kind of full circle in a way,” Megill said. “It’s really cool to see.”
The 6-foot-7, 230-pound starter allowed two earned runs on five hits, including one home run, and registered four strikeouts while walking one in 3.1 innings and 64 pitches. The Mets’ Opening Day starter opened his first outing since May 11 with a shutout first inning. He did it while touching 99 mph on the radar gun.
After a shaky second inning – he coughed up a no doubt two-run home run to Brandon Marsh on a belt-high sinker – Megill bounced back for a shutdown inning in the third. Megill retired Shohei Ohtani in each of his two at-bats against him. And of the five hits Megill permitted, only two were hit with an exit velocity of 90 mph or harder.
“Definitely could’ve gone more, but obviously the situation called for it with a lefty coming up and pitch count was already where I was reaching for how many I had for the day,” said Megill, who added his workload in between outings will be adjusted as he continues building back up. “Nothing I can do about that. Worked in our favor.”
David Peterson was well rested for his second outing of the season in relief. Since the Mets had an off day Thursday, Peterson’s outing was skipped but Buck Showalter made sure to keep the southpaw as close to his normal schedule as possible by throwing him behind Megill’s abbreviated start.
Peterson did a nice job shutting down the Angels in the fourth, with inherited runners on first and second, by inducing a double play and ending the inning unscathed. He limited the Halos to one run on three hits across 2.2 innings. He figures to remain in the rotation until one of Max Scherzer or Jacob deGrom returns to the starting five. Peterson’s only other time pitching out of the bullpen was during his 2022 debut, when he pitched behind Taijuan Walker who left with an injury on April 11 in Philly.
Pete Alonso returned to the lineup on Friday, just three days after a Yu Darvish fastball plunked his right hand, and went 1-for-5 with a stolen base. Alonso is 7-for-7 in stolen base attempts throughout his career.
Asked if Showalter allows himself to be relieved about some of the best-case scenarios the team has enjoyed, like Megill bouncing back on Friday and Alonso being able to avoid the injured list, the skipper said: “No, I’ll probably walk in here and Darth Vader will probably walk in and drop something new on me. I’m glad there’s a curtain up there from my office for a lot of reasons.”