D-backs’ Ryne Nelson allows 6 runs, double plays crush offense in loss to Mets

Sep 12, 2023, 7:17 PM | Updated: 8:38 pm

Ryne Nelson...

Ryne Nelson #19 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches during the first inning against the New York Mets at Citi Field on September 12, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The New York Mets got to Arizona Diamondbacks starter Ryne Nelson in the middle innings of a 7-4 win at Citi Field on Tuesday.

The Diamondbacks (76-70) had two opportunities with the bases loaded and one out, but a pair of double plays limited an offense that has gone five straight games scoring four runs or fewer.

New York (66-78) racked up five runs in the fourth and fifth innings off Nelson, who made his second start after getting recalled. Mets infielders Ronny Mauricio and Pete Alonso each hit a two-run home run off fastballs to build the lead.

Mauricio was called up at the start of September, and his 440-foot shot off Nelson was the first home run of his MLB career. Alonso, meanwhile, now has 44 this season.

Nelson was removed with one out in the fifth inning after getting charged six runs on seven hits with two walks. He allowed one run in 5.2 frames Thursday against the Chicago Cubs.

The Diamondbacks have searched for back-end stability in the rotation all year, and their latest starting pitching roster moves swapped Slade Cecconi for Nelson. Tuesday was the D-backs’ third straight night in which their starting pitcher did not get out of the fifth inning, although Arizona used an opener for Brandon Pfaadt on Sunday.

The Mets, meanwhile, received five innings of one-run ball from starter Jose Butto. His changeup gave Arizona fits, as he produced 13 whiffs on 20 swings using the pitch.

D-backs double plays

Down 6-2 with the bases loaded in the sixth inning, manager Torey Lovullo called on Evan Longoria as a pinch hitter against right-handed reliever Grant Hartwig. Longoria bounced into a double play to end the inning. Jake McCarthy, Jordan Lawlar and Emmanuel Rivera were on the bench.

Arizona cut the deficit to 6-4 in the eighth after Seby Zavala was hit by a pitch and Geraldo Perdomo walked with the bases loaded, which brought up Corbin Carroll.

Carroll hit a sharp grounder right to third baseman Brett Baty to kick off a 5-6-3 double play to end the inning. Carroll is 0-for-10 to start the series. The D-backs as a team have grounded into 26 double plays over their last 30 games.

“I thought it was a really good situation for us — we had the very top of the lineup coming up with the bases loaded and one out and we didn’t execute. We didn’t close the gap like I thought we would,” Lovullo said. “I thought we were going to at least make it 6-5, put ourselves in position to play one run down in the ninth inning.”

Mets catcher Francisco Alvarez hit a solo shot in the bottom half for insurance, and Adam Ottavino completed the save.

The Diamondbacks were 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position on Tuesday and left nine runners on base. They only produced six hits but walked seven times with two hit batsmen.

“We’ve got to be a little bit more stubborn in some very key situations with men in scoring position and expect to execute at a very high level,” Lovullo said.

Ketel Marte and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. provided the lone two RBI knocks for Arizona, with Marte tripling for the ninth time this year.

The D-backs dropped to 4-2 on their current road trip with two more games in Queens before they return to Chase Field on Friday. They are 1-4 against the Mets this year.

The Miami Marlins lost but the Cincinnati Reds won on Tuesday. The Reds are one game back of Arizona.

Kristian Robinson promoted

D-backs outfield prospect Kristian Robinson was promoted to Double-A Amarillo from Single-A Visalia.

The 22-year-old played 60 games across Visalia, High-A Hillsboro and the Arizona Complex League this season, slashing .286/.388/.521 with 12 home runs and 79 strikeouts this season.

He went 1-for-3 with a RBI double and two strikeouts in his Sod Poodles debut.

Zac Gallen next

Zac Gallen gets the nod Wednesday after his complete-game shutout Friday against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.

He did not pitch against the Mets earlier this season at Chase Field.

Joey Lucchesi (3.54 ERA) will be called up from the minors by the Mets to start.

First pitch is at 4:10 p.m. on ESPN 620 AM. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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