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Silent bats, AL pitcher's at-bat doom Mets in rubber-game loss

NEW YORK -- The New York Mets' depleted lineup is starting to match the futility of a year ago, pre-Yoenis Cespedes' arrival.

With David Wright, Lucas Duda and Travis d'Arnaud sidelined and with the slumping Cespedes requesting his first day off since April 27, the Mets struggled at the plate in a 2-1 loss in 13 innings to the Chicago White Sox in Wednesday’s rubber game at Citi Field.

Reliever Matt Albers -- who had not had a hit since 2007 or a plate appearance since 2009 -- doubled against Logan Verrett to lead off the final frame. Albers advanced to third base on a wild pitch and scored the tiebreaking run on Jose Abreu's sacrifice fly.

The White Sox had lost their previous six series.

The Mets’ modest run production came despite drawing 13 walks. They grounded into five double plays -- one shy of the franchise record.

Jacob deGrom took a scoreless effort into the seventh, when he surrendered a game-tying long ball to MLB home run leader Todd Frazier. The shot came a half-inning after Rene Rivera struck out with the bases loaded and the Mets failed to build on a 1-0 lead. Frazier had delivered a two-run homer against Steven Matz a day earlier as the White Sox began to climb out of a four-run deficit.

DeGrom had season highs with 10 strikeouts and 110 pitches in a no-decision. He limited Chicago to one run on five hits and two walks.

It marked the sixth time this season a Mets starting pitcher allowed one run or fewer and did not earn the win. Only five teams have more such games this season -- the Chicago Cubs (10), San Diego Padres (nine), San Francisco Giants (eight), Atlanta Braves (eight) and Los Angeles Dodgers (seven).

The Mets had runners on the corners and none out in the first inning against Miguel Gonzalez, but Michael Conforto struck out and Neil Walker grounded into a double play. They also placed two runners on base with one out in the eighth, but Ty Kelly -- filling in at third base for Wright -- grounded into a double play. Curtis Granderson flied out against former Yankees teammate David Robertson in the 11th to strand two baserunners.

Conforto, the No. 3 hitter, has one hit in his past 22 plate appearances. He struck out in his first four at-bats on Wednesday. Cespedes, the typical cleanup hitter, has one hit in his past 22 tries after striking out as a pinch hitter in the ninth. Kelly twice grounded into double plays. He has struggled at the big league level after batting .391 with Triple-A Las Vegas.

Forced to depart: Hansel Robles departed with an apparent injury while facing the second batter of the 12th inning. Robles bent over behind the mound, which drew a visit from trainer Ray Ramirez. Robles tried a handful of warm-up pitches before being pulled.

In a lighthearted moment, Jerry Blevins ran in from the bullpen to the mound. However, he then did a U-turn and returned to the bullpen. Manager Terry Collins actually was calling for Verrett.

What’s next: The Mets have a day off Thursday, then open a weekend series in Miami. Fresh off a relief appearance in which his fastball registered 101 mph, Noah Syndergaard (5-2, 1.84 ERA) opposes right-hander Tom Koehler (3-5, 4.50) in Friday’s 7:10 p.m. opener at Marlins Park.