MIAMI - Terry Collins marched from the dugout to the mound in the eighth inning Monday, his face contorted as he held in his fury. He pressed his hand to his mouth, as if to keep his thoughts from tumbling out.
Jeurys Familia didn't bother to look up as he handed the ball to his manager. Moments earlier, he fielded a bunt, then made a poor throw to first base. Later, he compounded his failure, bouncing another routine throw past his catcher after fielding a safety squeeze.
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Familia's errors were just two of a season-high six committed by the Mets in a 9-6 loss to the Marlins, the stench of which still was fresh when Collins was asked about his team's sloppiest game of the year.
"I'm not sure I can say it publicly,'' he said, still seething.
Later, he composed himself to deliver his most damning assessment: "It's not a big-league baseball game, I can tell you that.''
Dilson Herrera hit his first major-league homer and added a two-run triple in only his fourth big-league game. His solo shot in a four-run third made him the youngest Met (two days short of 20 years, 6 months) to homer since Jose Reyes (20 years, four days) in 2003. But nobody was immune from the Mets' defensive issues, which produced five unearned runs. For all of Herrera's good work at the plate, he committed two errors.
Indeed, as Collins said, the Mets looked like a minor- league outfit. "It wasn't just that,'' he said. "There were a lot of phases of the game where we weren't very good.''
Zack Wheeler allowed five runs -- two earned -- in 4 2/3 innings. Though he wasn't helped by a pair of errors, Wheeler also made trouble for himself.
He flipped a hanging curveball that Giancarlo Stanton bashed for his 34th homer. Stanton hit two more balls that died at the warning track against Wheeler, who said they would have been homers at any other ballpark. "I felt terrible the whole day, honestly,'' he said.
As has been a trend most of the season, Wheeler ran up his pitch count early. But he brought a 4-2 lead into the fifth and needed only one out to qualify for a win, so Collins left him in the game even as he lost control of it. It didn't go down as an error, but it was a miscalculation by Collins nonetheless.
David Wright committed a one-out error, allowing Donovan Solano's grounder to go through his legs. Then Wheeler gave up three straight rockets, including a run-scoring double by Casey McGehee and a tying RBI single by Garrett Jones.
Juan Lagares sailed his throw home past Travis d'Arnaud, allowing Jones to move to second. It wasn't an error in the scorebook, but it hurt one batter later, when Marcell Ozuna gave the Marlins a 5-4 lead with an RBI single off Buddy Carlyle.
Herrera gave the Mets a 6-5 lead with a two-run triple in the sixth. The Marlins quickly tied it, partly because Herrera made a throwing error that allowed Adeiny Hechavarria to get in scoring position. He scored on a single by Christian Yelich.
The Mets committed three throwing errors in the eighth, two by Familia. The other was charged to d'Arnaud after he scrambled after a wild pitch by Familia that allowed the go-ahead run to score. After Familia's second error made it 8-6, September call-up Erik Goeddel issued a bases-loaded walk.
"They happen,'' Wright said of the errors. "And a lot of times, they happen in bunches. And that's kind of what happened to us today, especially late.''