MILWAUKEE — The Mets can’t even play spoiler right.
A day after their postseason chances officially reached zero, they lost to the Brewers, 8-4, on Sunday, finishing the weekend sweep with an all-around sloppy effort, far from what manager Luis Rojas said he hoped to see — "everybody performing at their best" — in these final meaningless games.
The Brewers, who formed a celebratory mob in the infield amid streamers, confetti and fireworks, clinched the NL Central title.
The Mets, who have one victory in the past two weeks, clinched a losing season.
They pitched poorly, fielded poorly and hit OK. They sank to 73-82 after losing five consecutive games and 13 of 16.
"Our overall game has been trending down," Rojas said. "We haven’t played really good baseball. We’ve faced tough teams, yes, but committing three errors has been typical in a lot of our games lately."
Rojas, whose contract is up after this season, said he is not worried about this particularly bad stretch near the end of a bad season reflecting badly on him or his coaching staff.
"I can’t do that," he said. "I do worry about the guys and coaching them and maintaining focus to finish the season strong."
Carlos Carrasco never really gave the Mets a chance. He allowed five runs in four innings, with all of the damage coming in the first two frames. Willy Adames hit a two-run homer before Carrasco recorded an out, erasing what had been a one-run lead via Francisco Lindor’s solo shot.
"I tried to not give up a run in the first inning," said Carrasco, who has a 14.73 ERA in the first inning and 3.11 ERA in all other innings. "I was trying to be too cute in there, trying to put the pitch that I wanted instead of going and throwing it — actually throwing it."
Eduardo Escobar added a two-run single in the second.
The Mets got some of that back against Freddy Peralta (5 1/3 innings, four runs). Javier Baez had a two-run double in the fourth, Kevin Pillar a pinch-hit RBI single in the sixth.
And then Milwaukee (94-62) opened it up, with the help of the Mets’ defense, when they scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth.
The first run scored on a grounder to third. Jonathan Villar fielded it cleanly, considered throwing home and threw wildly to first instead, allowing pinch-running pitcher Eric Lauer to score. Jeurys Familia was outwardly frustrated.
Two more runs came across when Pete Alonso couldn’t handle Lindor’s one-hopped throw from deep shortstop.
"Those hurt," Rojas said. "You don’t want to see the guys playing like that. You don’t want to see the guys just giving the other team momentum to separate a game after we’re coming back."
Notes & quotes: The Mets put J.D. Davis back on the injured list with a sprained left hand. His hands bothered him virtually the entire season. Ligaments in his left one never fully healed, and he had tendinitis in his right thumb. "He should be fine after this," Rojas said, referring to 2022 . . . Other roster moves: Albert Almora Jr. was designated for assignment, and Sean Reid-Foley (right elbow inflammation) was activated from the 60-day IL . . . The Mets’ rotation against the Marlins, their final home series of the season: Marcus Stroman and Trevor Williams in a doubleheader Tuesday, then Taijuan Walker on Wednesday and Tylor Megill on Thursday . . . In revealing their minor-league award winners, the Mets named catcher Francisco Alvarez, their top prospect, the position player of the year. Righthander Adam Oller was the pitcher of the year.
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