R.A. Dickey refused to categorize Friday night's loss to the Phillies a "do-or-die game."
"There’s probably a level of concern that I think everybody should have," Dickey said after the 7-1 defeat, which left the Mets 12 games behind Philadelphia in the NL East race. "But this game is one game. It’s not a do-or-die game. It’s one game. So we’ve gotta collectively pick up the pieces and turn it around quick."
New York Mets
The Mets just don't have that much time left to make up all that lost ground.
"I don't know if worry is the right word," Dickey said. "The talk is that we're gonna have a little window to see where our team is. We can either let this build to a crescendo and panic about it or accept it for what it is and bring our best everyday, and that's what we have to do."
Any optimism the Mets had about making a second-half push quickly dissipated after the second.
Dickey induced John Mayberry to ground into what should've been an inning-ending 4-6-3 double play, which would've stranded the bases loaded. But Justin Turner was shaded a step or two too far up the middle, and that allowed Mayberry's grounder to sneak through the right side for a two-run single.
New York Mets
The Phillies wound up scoring three runs in the frame and never looked back.
"(Ruben) Tejada was playing him to pull," Turner said. "I took another step toward the middle because I didn’t wanna leave the middle wide open for him. Going back and looking at it, I was probably shaded a step or two too much up the middle. You never know where he’s gonna hit it, but I guess he doesn’t hit too many balls up the middle against Dickey.
"We definitely have scouting reports, but you gotta kind of feel out the game and what’s happening. Earlier in the at-bat, he’d thrown him a couple sinkers in, and he was swinging over the top of them. It’s tough. You never know what dickey’s knuckleball is gonna do, and that one just cut out over the plate and he did a good job of staying on the ball and poking it the opposite way."
Dickey (4-8), who also surrendered a sixth-inning solo home run to Raul Ibanez, suffered the lost despite going seven innings for the fourth time in his last five starts. The 36-year-old knuckleballer is 3-3 with a 2.69 ERA in his last 11 starts since May 20.
"I’d take two pitches back," Dickey said A 3-2 walk to (Domonic) Brown (which loaded the bases for Mayberry) and the second-pitch home run to Raul Ibanez. "Outside of that, I’m not too displeased with the way that I threw."
Dickey said the different between this year and last year is "making the big pitch."
"Last year, I was much better at making the big pitch for whatever reason," Dickey said. "This year, it’s been a little bit tougher for me to make that pitch for whatever reason."