The New York Mets may finally be ready to take their season back. After winning three of four of the Braves down in Atlanta this past weekend, they have a golden opportunity to regain their status as a contender in the National League.
How so? Well, their next ten games are against the defending world champion Chicago Cubs, the NL East-leading Washington Nationals and the 39-25 Los Angeles Dodgers. And they may be primed to make a statement should they play well during this stretch.
There’s no reason to think they won’t. OF Yoenis Cespedes came back over the weekend after missing 37 games to a hamstring strain. He hit a grand slam in his first game back is is scheduled to begin playing every day starting Monday vs the Cubs. They are a completely different team when Yo is in the lineup.
The pitching is back, too. Starters Steven Matz and Seth Lugo rejoined the rotation against Atlanta and both pitched about as well as the club could have hoped in their season debuts. Both allowed only one run each over seven innings worked in their respective starts. Lugo’s performance was the was the fifth straight game in which the Mets starting pitcher allowed no more than one run: Zack Wheeler (7 IP, 1 R), Matt Harvey (5 IP, 0 R), Robert Gsellman (6⅔ IP, 0 R) and Matz (7 IP, 1 R).
According to Elias, it’s the first time that Mets starters had five straight games with at least five innings pitched without allowing more than one run since May 2015. The starting pitchers during that streak were Matt Harvey, Jonathon Niese, Dillon Gee, Bartolo Colon and Jacob deGrom.
The Mets went 4-1 over the stretch with a 0.83 ERA with 20 KS and 10 BB while holding hitters to a measly .202 BA. The only loss came in Friday night’s 3-2 walkoff loss. The bullpen was stellar as well allowing just one earned run over the past three games. They appear to be less taxed and the Mets are hoping the trend continues as they claw their way back into contention.
“This is fun, you’re playing the world champs, you are playing arguably the best team in our division,’’ manager Terry Collins told reporters after the game. “We’re a little healthier and having Ces back is big, but we’ve got to go pitch. It’s going to be a fun week. I just hope we go out and play well.’’
The Mets will open with Jacob deGrom against Chicago on Monday. deGrom is coming off his worst back-to-back performances of his career, allowing a total of 15 earned runs over just eight innings pitched.
The win on Sunday raised the Mets’ record in the daytime to 5-11 this season…they are 5-2 in Atlantas’ new SunTrust Park, scoring 47 runs over the stretch…they have been horrid over the years down in Georgia, posting a 67-106 (.387) all-time record at Turner Field…
MLB’s 2017 First-Year Player Draft begins on Monday, June 12 and runs through Wednesday, June 14…former Met Todd Zeile will represent the club at MLB Network’s studio on the first night of the draft…The Mets’ have the 20th overall selection in the first round.