After 30 games to start the season solely against the Eastern Division, the New York Mets now get to see what the rest of that National League is like. A 14-16 record is not what many people expected at this point, but given the injuries and turmoil over the first month plus, it may be better than what could have been.
On the positive side this weekend, the Mets did win their third series in a row, taking 2 out of 3 from the Marlins. Another positive sign was that there were no major injuries incurred, and news on Noah Syndergaard was maybe just a bit better than what was being mentioned when the injury first happened. However, the front office is dealing with yet more publicity issues. First, there is the Kevin Plawecki photo issue that brings back memories of the Bret Saberhagen bleach incident in 1993. Now we have Sandy and Terry having to explain the reasoning behind Matt Harvey’s 3-game suspension for breaking team rules, which led to Adam Wilk making the start on Sunday in the 7-0 loss.
The San Francisco Giants come back to Citi Field for the first time since the Wild Card game last season having also struggled to start the year. They are not only in last place in the Western Division, but they also sport the worst record in the National League, the worst road record in the NL at 5-11, and the worst run differential in all of baseball at negative 63. On the other hand the Mets have the worst home record in the NL at 6-11.
The Giants offense is led by Joe Panik, who carries a .291 batting average, while Brandon Belt leads the team in Home Runs (4), RBI (14), and OBP (.366). Buster Posey leads in hits with 31. The Mets will miss Johnny Cueto who lead the team in wins with 4, and ERA at 4.50. Strikeout leader Jeff Samardzija (46) will face the Mets on Tuesday.
Here are the scheduled starters for the series:
Monday: Matt Moore (1-4, 6.75 ERA) vs. Jacob deGrom (2-1, 3.68)
Moore has not won a game since April 10 against Arizona, and is coming off of allowing 9 Earned Runs in just 3.1 innings to the Dodgers. He has allowed 15 Earned Runs in his last 15 innings pitched. deGrom is coming off of his worst game this season, allowing 5 runs in 5 innings against Atlanta, but still picked up the win as the Mets were able to put across 16 runs.
Tuesday: Jeff Samardzija (0-4, 5.03) vs. Zack Wheeler (1-2, 4.78)
Samardzija has not pitched too badly in his last 2 starts, allowing just 2 runs and striking out 16, but was unable to get the wins, as the Giants pulled the games out late after Samardzija exited. Wheeler has seen his ERA steadily decline over his past 4 outings, but has not been able to garner a win since April 12. Wheeler has also labored though high pitch counts in each of his games, allowing at least 80, while only averaging about 4-5 innings of work in each game.
Wednesday: Matt Cain (2-1, 4.70) vs. Rafael Montero (0-2 in relief, 10.45)
Cain allowed 9 runs in his last outing, but that was his only bump in the road, as he had allowed on 3 in his previous 4 starts. Cain has also kept the ball in the yard, allowing only 3 Home Runs on the season. Montero makes another attempt to remain in the rotation with Syndergaard out, after allowing 5 runs in 3.1 innings against the Marlins, but did not factor in the decision as the Mets came back to win 8-7.
It will be interesting to see how the rest of May plays out, now that there will be some variety to the schedule.