Mets' Jacob deGrom Ties Nolan Ryan's Record for Most Strikeouts in 1st 5 Starts

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistApril 29, 2021

New York Mets' Jacob deGrom reacts after striking out Washington Nationals' Kyle Schwarber during the seventh inning of a baseball game Friday, April 23, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

The New York Mets lost 1-0 to the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday, but it wasn't all bad news for the National League East squad.

According to David Schoenfield of ESPN, Jacob deGrom tied Nolan Ryan's record of 59 strikeouts through a pitcher's first five starts of a season. The Mets ace struck out nine in six innings while allowing a single run and three hits in defeat.

Boston's only run came in the second inning when Christian Vazquez drove in Brandon Nimmo with an RBI double. That was enough with Nick Pivetta throwing five shutout innings and the bullpen closing the door.

Unfortunately for the Mets, deGrom pitching at an incredibly high level and the team still losing is nothing new.

Schoenfield explained Wednesday marked his 33rd career start in which he allowed zero or one run and did not earn the win. That is the most in the major leagues since his debut came in the 2014 season and well ahead of Julio Teheran's second-highest mark of 25 during that span.

Ryan set his record in 1978, although deGrom had fewer walks (four to 25) and a better ERA (0.51 to 1.98) in his run of five starts.

The right-hander has been a bright spot for the Mets in an otherwise disappointing start to the season. They are just 9-10 despite high expectations in place at the start of the year and have one or fewer runs in three of their last four games.

The Mets can at least take solace in the struggles across the rest of the NL East, as they are just a half-game behind the first-place Atlanta Braves in the season's early going.