Skip to content

Buck Showalter calls for Mets to ‘play better’ after fourth straight series loss

May 7, 2023;  New York City, New York, USA;  New York Mets manager Buck Showalter (11) argues with umpire Marvin Hudson (51) in the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Citi Field.
May 7, 2023; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets manager Buck Showalter (11) argues with umpire Marvin Hudson (51) in the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Citi Field. / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

With the Mets’ 13-6 loss to the Colorado Rockies on Sunday afternoon, New York has now lost 11 of its past 14 games and dropped four straight series.

After the loss, manager Buck Showalter‘s message as how to the team can snap out of its losing stretch was simple: “Just play better.”

“Play better,” Showalter said. “You know, nobody wants to hear it. There’s plenty of things to grab on. I understand everybody’s job is pointing to reasons why they perceive it. So is mine, right? Just play better. You control it. We control it. It’s not like there’s some outside element. Just play better. It’s not really quite as difficult as some people may perceive it.

“It’s up to us to identify some of those things and get better at it and get back to things we do well and have done, not only last season, but this season. So that’s what our hope is. Each day’s a chance to begin down that path.”

Showalter was asked if there’s anything specific he can point to as the reason for the team’s slump and reiterated that the Mets aren’t going to make any excuses and just need to play better baseball.

“Yeah, really — yeah, you do,” Showalter said. “It’s not as simple as just changing a batting order or playing somebody else or pitching somebody else. There’s a lot of thing I could say but it sounds like excuses and we’re not going there. Play better. That goes for all us. And our guys know that, they’re a very accountable group, they were last year through thick and thin and they will be again this year.”

“A lot of little things that we need to. … There’s a lot of different clichés and stuff that people throw out there, it’s not that time,” Showalter added. “We talked about a lot of things. There’s three or four things we attacked since the sun came up this morning. It looked like we were going to — we did score six runs. Just couldn’t seem to hold them.

“You play a sport that you play every day. You’re as good as your last game and as bad as your last game. We’ve certainly looked at a lot of those things without sitting here and running down a list. We did it last year when we were winning games. You try to stretch out the good times and shorten up the bad ones. And right now, we’re trying to figure out a way to shorten this — whether it be individually or as a team — because individually is our team.”

One of the game-changing plays during Sunday’s loss was DH Daniel Vogelbach getting tagged out at second after overrunning the base, thus preventing the run from scoring. Vogelbach took accountability for the mistake after the game, saying he “messed up” and “regretted it all game.”

“I think you guys all know that I want to win just more than anybody, just a play that I messed up,” Vogelbach said. “We were having good at-bats, we had the guy on the ropes and you look back and, if I don’t make that play, you know, who knows where the games go. Just something, the old saying — when it rains, it pours.

“Things aren’t going the way that we want right now, but the game is challenging us. We have a lot of baseball to play. I can tell you that myself and everybody else in this clubhouse, it’s not from a lack of effort or it’s not from a lack of want or work putting in. It’s just the way the games goes sometimes. We have a choice and I think that everybody in here will respond the way everybody wants us to.”

Vogelbach continued to look at things positively by saying that he has “all the faith in the world” that the Mets can turn things around and get back on the winning track.

“Yeah, I mean, you see it — some balls don’t bounce our way, some good at-bats that don’t end the way that we want to, but that’s the game,” Vogelbach said. “It’s probably not going to be the last time that something like this goes on this season. I’m not very good at math, but we have a lot of games left. We’re starting to get healthy, we’re starting to get guys back. We just have to stick together and I think that’s something that this group does very well. … I got all the faith in the world that we’re gonna be just fine.”

Pete Alonso was asked if he feels that everything is going wrong for this team at the moment and gave another positive outlook on things, saying that the Mets defense has been solid all year long and added how Sunday’s loss can be “a really good building block for this offence.”

“I wouldn’t say everything is going wrong, because I thought we did a great job offensively today,” Alonso said. “I thought we had great at-bats. I thought we came through in some great situations. I mean, what was it the fourth inning — bases-loaded situation? I mean, that’s tough. Tough being on the bad side of the stick. I mean, if they get out of that jam and let’s say the strike three to me is called a ball as it should’ve been, maybe the momentum doesn’t shift when they get to hit. I mean, it’s tough – – it’s tough to say.

“I mean, there’s definitely some positives. We played catch really well defensively, our cuts and relays were great. I thought just general defensive play has been great all year. I think we take really good care of the baseball. I think today’s a really good building block for this offense, I thought that we had great at-bats, we didn’t really give away any at-bats the entire day no matter what the scoreboard said. I thought we did a great job on the offensive part of the ball. Again, just wasn’t enough and we would’ve liked to come out on top of this one. Onward and upward.”