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J.D. Davis drops fly ball, and it proves costly

The Mets' J.D. Davis hits a single during

The Mets' J.D. Davis hits a single during the fifth inning against the Phillies on Saturday at Citi Field. Photo Credit: AP/Mary Altaffer

J.D. Davis pounded his fist in his glove when the Phillies extended their lead to five runs on Saturday night, knowing his miscue in leftfield helped set up a big inning against Mets starter Marcus Stroman.

Davis’ first outfield error this season was a costly one, opening the door for a four-run fourth inning in the Mets’ 5-0 loss to Philadelphia at Citi Field.

With the Mets trailing 1-0 on a first-inning homer by Cesar Hernandez, Davis got back to the warning track in plenty of time but flubbed a one-handed attempt to catch Scott Kingery’s fly ball to open the fourth. Stroman then surrendered hits to four of the next five batters he faced, including a two-run double by Corey Dickerson, for a 5-0 deficit.

“I just took my eye off the ball, a mental mistake that just cost us,” Davis said. “It’s not a good feeling, especially when you know that that leadoff runner should have been out, it should have been caught. Again, it cost us a run.

“They took advantage of it. They made a few errors for us and we didn’t take advantage of it, and they did.”

Indeed, the Phillies committed three errors in the first four innings, including consecutive booted grounders by third baseman Brad Miller in the fourth, but the Mets left seven runners on base to that point against Phillies starter Drew Smyly.

Davis, a converted third baseman, had started only three games in the outfield during the previous two years as an Astro but had appeared in 60 games in leftfield this season as a way to keep his productive bat in the lineup. After a 1-for-4 showing Saturday night, he is batting .306 with 18 home runs, 49 RBIs and an .886 OPS.

All five of his errors this season have come in his 31 appearances at third base. He occasionally has taken adventurous routes to balls as he’s adjusted to the outfield, but he carried a 1.000 fielding percentage in 459 innings in leftfield before his fourth-inning gaffe.

“I don’t think he nonchalanted it, I think he just missed it. Just a mistake,” manager Mickey Callaway said. “It was tailing away from him and he went to catch it, and it just kept tailing. It hit the end of his glove and knocked out. I don’t think he’s ever nonchalanted anything. He’s so intense and so into everything, but it was a tough one.”

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