The Mets (27-19) return to Citi Field to face a west coast opponent, the Los Angeles Dodgers (25-23). Two out of three at Nationals Park went to the Amazin’s in the last series bringing them within half a game of the NL East lead. The Dodgers stand four and a half games out of the NL West lead, however, they currently are riding a four game win streak including a series sweep against the Reds. In their second matchup this season, both teams will battle in Queens to continue their hot streaks.
7:10 PM Friday: Jacob deGrom (3-1, 3.07 ERA) v Julio Urias (Triple-A: 4-1, 1.10 ERA)
DeGrom has been lucky earning three straight no decisions in starts that could have very well been losses. His velocity has been a tad disturbing as it is lower than normal, but the righty continues to battles threw quality innings. Over that three game stretch, his best start was against the Dodgers where he went seven allowing two earned runs.
The Dodgers will send their 19-year-old pitching prospect Urias to the mound for his much anticipated MLB debut. He has been dominating in Triple-A as he is deceptive with his pitches. While basking in the major league lights, Urias will be sure to make his first big league start memorable.
Pitching Edge: Urias has been exceptional, but the first MLB start is always unpredictable. Give deGrom the edge for his veteran prowess.
7:15 PM Saturday: Noah Syndergaard (5-2, 1.94 ERA) v Kenta Maeda (3-3, 3.29 ERA)
Syndergaard recorded yet another masterful appearance against the Milwaukee Brewers last time. He went seven innings allowing six scattered hits for a lone earned run. That is three straight victories for the 23-year-old who continues to keep on dealing.
On the other hand, Maeda has not been doing so well. It has been six starts since his last win as he struggles to get through the opposing lineups the second and third times around. He earned a no-decision in his last start against the San Diego Padres after allowing four earned runs on four hits and a walk. The long ball has been an issue and the Mets bats will try to take advantage.
Pitching Edge: Syndergaard is pitching at his best while Maeda is struggling to find the magic he had earlier in the season. Syndergaard gets the edge.
8:00 Sunday: Bartolo Colon (4-3, 3.44 ERA) v Clayton Kershaw (7-1, 1.48 ERA)
After back-to-back losses, Colon bounced back against the Nationals for a victory worthy performance. In seven strong innings of work, he allowed only one earned run on five hits and two walks. The two-seam was back to its normal movement and location. Colon will try for more of the same Sunday night.
What does Kershaw do after a loss? Go on a five-game win streak. Since his loss on April 26, Kershaw has gone at least seven innings in all of his starts after that earning a victory in each one. If that wasn’t enough, he has accumulated double-digit strikeouts in four of those five and will look to be the first MLB hurler to reach 100 strikeouts this season.
Pitching Edge: Kershaw gets the edge as he continues to make his case for the Cy Young yet again.
More About This Series:
The Mets took a hit when they had to place first baseman Lucas Duda on the disabled list with a stress fracture in his lower back. Manager Terry Collins and company now have a big decision to make with Duda’s power bat out of the lineup. Wilmer Flores is coming off an injury, so he could be awarded the position while prospect Dominic Smith may get a chance to make the best of a bad situation. The Mets may also want to look on the trade block. James Loney appears to be a favorable target if a trade was the case between the Padres and Mets. More about this situation will come in time, but the Mets will have to make their decision quickly to replace a crucial part of their lineup.