NEW YORK -- The Mets might want to invest in some better sunglasses.
They misplayed three balls due to the glaring sun, and were defeated by the Royals, 6-2, on Sunday at Citi Field. Starter Zack Wheeler lasted just five innings and gave up four runs as the Mets fell to 49-60.
Too bright: The sun was particularly brutal on the right side of the field as second baseman Daniel Murphy and right fielder Marlon Byrd combined to botch three plays. They were each charged an error for dropping balls, with Murphy dropping one in the second and Byrd in the fifth, and Byrd also had a ball drop in next to him in the fifth. Byrd's error led to an unearned run.
Wheeler loses: Wheeler came undone in the fifth after Byrd's botch. He later threw a wild pitch to allow a run, and after Byrd's second misplay Wheeler gave up a two-run single. The youngster surrendered five hits and four runs (three earned) and walked five. He cruised early on, but struggled in his final two innings, starting with a Mike Moustakas homer in the fourth with two outs. Wheeler is now 4-2 overall, and 1-2 with a 5.76 ERA at Citi Field.
Rough day for Byrd: In addition to the error and missed ball, Byrd struck out with the Mets trailing 4-1 in the fifth with the bases loaded and two outs. He heard boos after the strikeout. Byrd went 1-for-4 with a double and run scored.
Heal fast, David: The Mets are now 0-2 without David Wright, who was placed on the disabled list on Saturday with a right hamstring strain and is expected to be sidelined for three to five weeks.
Division fading: The Mets entered the All-Star break 11 games behind the Braves in the NL East, but are now 16 games behind the division leaders.