Team of the Week: New York Red Bulls
Talk about making halftime adjustments! Jesse Marsch was able to rile his team up at the half, and totally turned the game around, making a 1-0 deficit in the Bronx into a 3-1 Red Bulls triumph to maintain a perfect record in the Hudson Derby this season.
Play of the Week: Steven Matz hits a two run double in his first career at bat
The Mets have been starved for offense recently, and they found it, when they called up Steven Matz from AAA. The 24-year-old was drafted in the second round of the 2009 MLB Draft out of Long Island, and was hitting .304 in Vegas. In his first major league at bat, he lined a two run double over the head of Billy Hamilton, electrifying the crowd at Citi Field and giving the Mets the lead in the second inning.
Performance of the Week: Steven Matz’s debut
Oh by the way, he happened to pitch a gem as well. Matz is the last of the Mets’ superstar pitching prospects to come up to the majors, despite being drafted before Syndergaard, Harvey, Wheeler, and deGrom. It looks like it was well worth the wait. He recovered from a first pitch that was well out of the zone, followed Brandon Phillips challenging the kid to throw a strike before crushing one to left field.
For the rest of the game, he held the Reds to only four more hits, and one more run over 7.2 innings while striking out six. Outside of his aforementioned double, he also singled on a hit and run play, and lined a two run single in his next two at bats. It was an absolutely stellar and historic debut for a man who we all expect to have many more great moments in a Mets uniform.
Worst Play of the Week: Miscommunication leads to Little League home run
Carlos Correa has taken the league by storm since he was called up to Houston’s major league roster, but on Sunday, the Yankees gave him some extra help. Garrett Jones and Brett Gardner could not figure out who would be catching Correa’s routine fly ball in the gap, and they watched as the ball fell between them.
As the ball rolled towards the wall, Gardner bobbled it as he tried to pick it up, and Correa continued to truck around the bases before he slid into home easily with the game tying run. Hilarious play if you’re a fan of the Astros, and a mind-numbingly upsetting play if you’re Yankee pitcher Michael Pineda.
Game of the Week: Red Bulls take Round Two of the Battle for New York
The Bronx side has been playing a lot better recently, and going in, looked like a much better team than the one which lost to the Red Bulls in New Jersey earlier this season. And this proved to be true early on in the match, as Thomas McNamara put New York City ahead in the sixth minute. But the Red Bulls responded with a resounding performance in the second half. They controlled possession for seemingly the entire 45 minute period, and scored three goals to ice the game and claim the season series.
Player of the Week: Curtis Granderson
The Mets’ leadoff hitter has been better this year than in his first season in Flushing, but he could still be considered rather disappointing by some. He was mired in a slump that saw him going 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts far too regularly. but that has changed recently. His latest hot streak has actually lasted longer than a week, going back to roughly June 10. But, let’s focus on this past week: he raised his batting average 18 points by going 11-for-24 with four homers, two doubles, five walks, and only four strikeouts. For an offense that has been woefully anemic this month, he has been the only consistent bright spot, setting the tone out of the leadoff position.
Worst Team of the Week: NYCFC
One of the hottest teams in the MLS was riding a three game win streak into their home game against their biggest rivals. After taking an early lead, they absolutely collapsed in the second half of Sunday’s showdown, allowing the Red Bulls to take advantage with three goals, blowing the expansion team out of the water. What looked so promising turned out to be a major disappointment.
Transaction of the Week- Andrea Pirlo signs with NYCFC
While the deal isn’t official just yet, news broke that Italian legend Andrea Pirlo plans to sign his name on the dotted line this upcoming week and agree to an 18 month contract with NYCFC. This has been rumored forever, but finally, it feels real. He’ll join the NYCFC midfield that currently features Mix Diskerud, but will soon include Frank Lampard as well.