Mets get blown out by Orioles in series opener

Staring down a difficult schedule entering the shortened 2020 season, the Mets could at least take solace in two soft spots. The Marlins were rebuilding. The Orioles were rebuilding. And the Mets had the benefit of playing nearly a quarter of their schedule against those two teams.

That was the idea, anyway. The reality has unfolded quite differently for the Mets, who sit in worse playoff position than the teams they were supposed to beat. In losing an 11-2 blowout to the Orioles on Tuesday at Citi Field, the Mets fell to 7-6 on the season against the O’s and Marlins, with only one game remaining versus that duo.

Because they haven’t made up for it with strong play against other teams, the Mets sit outside the National League playoff picture with only 2 1/2 weeks remaining to pick up significant ground. The Orioles and Marlins are both in stronger contention.

Despite bursts of sound play, it has been difficult for the Mets to gain much momentum because their starting pitchers — Jacob deGrom excepted — have been so inconsistent.