CHICAGO (AP) — An anticipated showdown between Jacob deGrom and Cole Hamels will be decided without them — and a day later, to boot.
The game between the Chicago Cubs and New York Mets was suspended with the score tied at 1 in the top of the 10th inning Tuesday night following a rain delay of 53 minutes.
The game will resume Wednesday at noon. The finale of the three-game series, scheduled for 1:20 p.m., will begin approximately 45 minutes after the conclusion of the suspended game.
Tuesday’s showdown featured the marquee matchup of deGrom and Hamels — the ERA leader in the majors versus one of the hottest pitchers in the league — and didn’t disappoint.
DeGrom settled for a no-decision despite throwing eight strong innings. He allowed a run and eight hits, struck out 10 and walked one, lowering his ERA to 1.68.
“He continues to go out there with confidence and continues to make pitches in big situations and gives us a chance to win,” Mets manager Mickey Callaway said.
After going the distance in his last start for Chicago’s only complete game of the season, Hamels was lifted for a pinch hitter after five scoreless innings and 93 pitches. He allowed four hits, struck out eight and walked three while lowing his ERA to 0.69 in six starts since being traded from Texas to the Cubs in late July.
“To put up zeroes are great, giving the team an opportunity to win,” Hamels said, “but first and foremost you want to go deep in the ballgame.”
Brandon Kintzler took over in the sixth and immediately found trouble. Todd Frazier led off with a single and Jay Bruce followed with a walk. After Kevin Plawecki grounded out to third to advance both runners, lefty Jorge De La Rosa came on and got Brandon Nimmo to pop out to shortstop.
DeGrom then hit a sharp grounder to the left side. Baez fielded the ball on the outfield grass, but had no play, allowing Frazier to score and give New York a 1-0 lead.
Chicago tied it in the seventh. Kyle Schwarber led off with a single and Albert Almora Jr. tried to sacrifice him to second, but bunted the ball right to deGrom, who fired to second for the force out. Pinch-hitter Ben Zobrist then hit a sharp grounder that went under the glove of Bruce at first base and rolled into right, putting runners on the corners with one out.
David Bote followed with a sacrifice fly to center that tied it.
While fielding a bunt by Baez in the fourth, deGrom slipped and got up hobbling. After throwing a couple of warmup pitches, he continued without issue.
“It didn’t feel great at the time,” he said. “But I was like, ‘Well, you have to go see if you can keep going.'”
The Mets sent veteran Jose Bautista to Philadelphia in exchange for a player to be named or cash considerations. Assistant GM John Ricco said the move was about allowing Bautista to go to a contender and freeing up playing time down the stretch for younger players. The 37-year-old batted .204 with nine homers in 83 games after signing a pro-rated contract for the minimum salary in May. To fill Bautista’s roster spot, OF Nimmo (bruised left index finger) was activated from the 10-day DL. He went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts.
The Mets also said they would not be calling up hyped slugging prospect Peter Alonso from Triple-A when rosters expand in September. Alonso entered Tuesday with 33 home runs and a minor league-leading 111 RBIs.
Mets: C Devin Mesoraco (stiff neck) is improving and Callaway said he is hopeful Mesoraco will be ready to play on Thursday.
Cubs: 3B Kris Bryant (left shoulder inflammation) continued his rehab assignment with Triple-A Iowa, playing the field and going 1 for 2 with an RBI and two walks before being lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh. … SS Addison Russell (sprained left middle finger/right shoulder inflammation) played catch Tuesday for the first time since he was shut down on Aug. 20.
Cubs RHP Alec Mills (0-0, 1.17 ERA) makes his second start in the finale of the series Wednesday, facing LHP Jason Vargas (4-8, 6.96). Mills allowed one run and struck out eight in 5 2/3 of an inning last Friday against the Reds in his first start. Vargas is 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA in his last two starts.
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