In just his third start since returning from the IL, deGrom threw a high of 85 pitches over seven innings. After the game, he said he could’ve pitched into the eighth inning, but had gotten somewhat tired over the course of the game.
“I felt pretty good, I noticed there in the seventh I started getting a little tired, actually the sixth,” deGrom said. “Was having a hard time holding onto the ball, and then starting getting a little tired. They asked me if I wanted the eighth, and I said I’m pretty worn out to be honest with you. That came from me. I felt good most of the night, except for those last couple of innings I could tell my arm started to drag a little bit.”
DeGrom got into a bases loaded jam in the fourth inning with only one out. He didn’t back down from the challenge, and struck out Will Myers and Tucupita Marcado to escape the inning without any damage.
He went on to say that SS Francisco Lindor was giving him words of encouragement to get out of the inning.
“I just tried to execute pitches,” deGrom said. “Francisco, he was back there saying, ‘pick me up, pick me up’. That was my main goal, to go out there and pick the guys up and keep it a zero zero ballgame at that point.”
The ace’s ERA now sits at 0.62, and is the lowest ever in MLB history over nine starts in a season. He was asked about his ERA and what he tries to do when out on the mound.
“Honestly, I try not to think about it,” deGrom said. “I try to go out there and just put us in a position to win. I think the work in between definitely helps, where I’m at with my delivery. We had a little speed bump early on where I missed what fourteen or fifteen days, and kind of got out of whack. Coming back, feel good. Just take the mindset of keeping us in a game, and try to put up zeros. That’s all I try to think about. And execute pitches when I need to. Going back to like ’18, ’19, trying just to control what I can control. One pitch at a time and just try to hit my spot.”
Manager Luis Rojas was asked after the game if it’s possible for him to enjoy deGrom’s performances while being focused on the game as a whole.
“It’s almost impossible enough to do both things,” Rojas said. “I’m locked with the game, I’m trying to think ahead, I’m looking the positions, I’m looking at everybody. At the same time, Jake is pitching, and is throwing all these triple digit fastballs and blending in 94 mph sliders, 94 mph changeups, and then now and then a curveball. And he fields his position, and he’s hitting.
“All these things that he does, it’s impressive, I’ve never seen anything like it. You know that you’re watching something special. We just faced a really good offensive team. They’re tough, this is a team that chases less, strikes out the least probably. At a point he had a really low pitch count, I mean he came out with 82 pitches after seven. If he would’ve felt right, kept going, probably would’ve thrown a complete game tonight. Just says a lot about who this guy is.”