Dellin Betances’ trouble in Saturday’s 2-1 loss to the Yankees began well before the wild pitch that ended it.
The Mets reliever was more upset about the leadoff walk to Clint Frazier. The right-hander has walked seven batters in just 10 ¹/₃ innings on the season.
“It’s my fault,’’ Betances said of how the ninth inning unfolded. “I put myself in a bad situation right away. … I can’t keep doing that, giving free bases. It’s cost me a lot.”
And it cost the Mets on Saturday.
Betances, pitching on back-to-back days for the third time this year, also continued to deal with reduced velocity, as his return from missing nearly all of 2019 has been difficult.
“I feel like I’ve hurt myself, more than anything, by putting guys on and not being able to execute a good pitch to get ahead in the count,’’ Betances said. “I’ve given up runs because of that. I haven’t been putting guys away with two strikes and I’m trying to find that consistency.”
Manager Luis Rojas said he never considered pulling Betances despite his lack of command.
“We’re sticking with Dellin,’’ Rojas said. “He has gotten big outs.”
J.D. Davis was drilled in his left hip by a 98 mph fastball from Aroldis Chapman in the top of the ninth. He was checked out by the trainers and remained in the game. Rojas said Davis told him he was good, but Rojas will see how the third baseman is on Sunday before determining if he can play. Michael Conforto slammed into the right field wall trying to catch DJ LeMahieu’s triple in the third. He also got a visit from the trainers and finished the game.
Robinson Cano made just his second start at second base on Saturday since returning from the IL and Rojas said Cano would continue to serve as the team’s primary DH, at least for the foreseeable future.
“Right now, he’ll probably have more DH time,’’ Rojas said. “We have a rotation going on in the infield.”
One that rarely includes Cano.
Rojas said Luis Guillorme was playing “good baseball and having quality at-bats.”
The manager also pointed to Amed Rosario hopefully building on his dramatic home run from Friday and wanting to take advantage of Andres Gimenez’s versatility.
“We’re moving guys around,’’ Rojas said. “At the same time, with all the doubleheaders this week, why not give Robinson the DH spot to keep him fresh.”
And he was inclined to start him Saturday because it was a nine-inning game, unlike a pair of seven-innings games in a doubleheader. His reasoning consisted of not wanting to remove Cano for a defensive replacement in a short game, but a willingness to do so during a standard game.
Still, Rojas added, “Robinson can definitely play a quality second base.”
Rojas said he was in favor of seven-inning doubleheaders, but only “for the purpose of getting this season in.”
He doesn’t want them to continue into next year, when, hopefully, the game isn’t impacted by COVID.
“I like my nine-inning games,’’ Rojas said. “Traditional.” … Jeff McNeil wasn’t in Saturday’s lineup, but Rojas said he was available and would start Sunday, perhaps in both ends of the doubleheader.