|WASHINGTON ( GONZALEZ )|
NY METS ( HEFNER )
|953||WASHINGTON||-145||Ov 7.5,-105||-140||Ov 7.5,-105|
|954||NY METS||+135||Un 7.5,-115||+130||Un 7.5,-115|
|vs Right-handed Starters||7-6||-0.4||8-5||3.8||0.244||0.308||5.0||0.270||0.315|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-5||5-2||3.4||0.231||0.274||5.3||0.250||0.307|
|vs Left-handed Starters||2-3||-1.5||3-2||4.8||0.247||0.314||5.0||0.240||0.314|
|Past 7 Games||3-4||-1||6-1||6.4||0.283||0.338||6.1||0.275||0.346|
|4/6/2013||DETWILER(L)||@ CINCINNATI||LEAKE(R)||7-6||W||120||8.5 un||O||10||6||3||13||11||0|
|4/7/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ CINCINNATI||CUETO(R)||3-6||L||100||7 un||O||8||7||1||11||13||0|
|4/9/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||CHI WHITE SOX||PEAVY(R)||8-7||W||-145||7 un||O||13||4||1||11||6||1|
|4/10/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||CHI WHITE SOX||FLOYD(R)||5-2||W||-150||8 un||U||11||7||0||9||5||0|
|4/11/2013||HAREN(R)||CHI WHITE SOX||AXELROD(R)||7-4||W||-140||8 ov||O||10||8||0||13||11||1|
|4/15/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ MIAMI||LEBLANC(L)||10-3||W||-180||7 ov||O||16||6||0||6||4||0|
|4/16/2013||HAREN(R)||@ MIAMI||SANABIA(R)||2-8||L||-160||8 un||O||8||7||1||11||4||0|
|4/17/2013||DETWILER(L)||@ MIAMI||NOLASCO(R)||6-1||W||-145||7.5 un||U||11||7||1||7||7||1|
|4/19/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ NY METS||HARVEY(R)||1-7||L||-105||6.5 un||O||4||6||1||8||4||1|
|4/20/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ NY METS||HEFNER(R)|| |
|4/21/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ NY METS||GEE(R)|| |
|4/22/2013||HAREN(R)||ST LOUIS||MILLER(R)|| |
|4/23/2013||DETWILER(L)||ST LOUIS||WAINWRIGHT(R)|| |
|4/24/2013||STRASBURG(R)||ST LOUIS||GARCIA(L)|| |
|4/27/2013|| ||CINCINNATI|| || |
|4/8/2013||HARVEY(R)||@ PHILADELPHIA||HALLADAY(R)||7-2||W||105||7.5 un||O||9||8||1||4||4||0|
|4/9/2013||GEE(R)||@ PHILADELPHIA||LEE(L)||3-8||L||180||7 ov||O||8||5||2||11||5||1|
|4/10/2013||HEFNER(R)||@ PHILADELPHIA||KENDRICK(R)||3-7||L||120||9 un||O||11||7||0||10||5||0|
|4/12/2013||NIESE(L)||@ MINNESOTA||WORLEY(R)||16-5||W||-110||7.5 un||O||15||6||1||6||6||2|
|4/13/2013||HARVEY(R)||@ MINNESOTA||DIAMOND(L)||4-2||W||-125||7 ov||U||10||6||0||4||3||0|
|4/16/2013||GEE(R)||@ COLORADO||NICASIO(R)||4-8||L||140||10 un||O||8||6||0||12||8||0|
|4/16/2013||LAFFEY(L)||@ COLORADO||FRANCIS(L)||8-9||L||125||10.5 un||O||12||10||2||13||12||3|
|4/18/2013||NIESE(L)||@ COLORADO||GARLAND(R)||3-11||L||105||9.5 un||O||8||5||1||17||7||1|
|4/23/2013||NIESE(L)||LA DODGERS||KERSHAW(L)|| |
|4/24/2013||HARVEY(R)||LA DODGERS||LILLY(L)|| |
|4/25/2013||HEFNER(R)||LA DODGERS||RYU(L)|| |
|4/27/2013|| ||PHILADELPHIA|| || |
|WASHINGTON: HITTING: The Nats were among the eight worst teams in the majors in runs (3.88 per game), BA (.242), OBP (.309) and OPS (.691). Much of that had to do with the first two spots in the batting order hitting .285 OBP and .283 OBP respectively. OF ROGER BERNADINA (.301 OBP) and SS IAN DESMOND (.298 OBP) were the regular 1-2 hitters in the order. $126 million OF JAYSON WERTH was also to blame, batting .232 with a meager 58 RBI in 561 at-bats. 3B RYAN ZIMMERMAN also missed two months with an abdominal problem and had a down year with 12 HR and 49 RBI in 101 games. But OF MIKE MORSE had a breakout season, leading the Nats in batting (.303), HR (31) and RBI (95). 1B ADAM LaROCHE suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in June, but should be fully healed. Washington is counting on a pair of talented 24-year-olds to contribute a little more in 2B DANNY ESPINOSA (.236 BA, 21 HR) and C WILSON RAMOS (15 HR in 389 AB). |
STARTING PITCHING: STEPHEN STRASBURG is back fully healed from Tommy John surgery, but will reportedly be limited to 160 innings in 2012. That's still enough time to strike out 150 batters and win a dozen games though. In sending four quality prospects to Oakland, the Nats paid a huge price for GIO GONZALEZ. They hope he can overcome his control issues and become an elite No. 2. Well-traveled EDWIN JACKSON was also brought in to help bolster the rotation. He joins his sixth different club since 2008, but Jackson is just 28 years old and was serviceable after being traded to St. Louis last year (5-2, 3.58 ERA). JORDAN ZIMMERMANN was in the same boat as Strasburg last year, coming off elbow surgery and limited to 161.1 innings. But in that time, he had a team-best 3.18 ERA and 4.0 K-to-BB ratio (124 K, 31 BB). JOHN LANNAN remains the top lefty in the Nats rotation with a team-high 10 wins in 2011. He dominated left-handed hitters last year (.211 BA, 55 K in 185 AB), but still needs to improve his weak 1.4 K-to-BB ratio (106 K, 76 BB).
RELIEF PITCHING: DREW STOREN had a phenomenal first year as a full-time closer, saving 43-of-48 games with a 2.75 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 74 K in 75.1 innings. His role will remain the same in 2012 once he returns from the 15-day DL (elbow) to start the season. Newcomer BRAD LIDGE was limited to 25 innings because of shoulder problems last year, but he appears to be the closer until Storen returns. The Nats have arguably the best set-up man in the game in TYLER CLIPPARD, who led the majors with 38 holds and posted a 1.83 ERA and 0.84 WHIP for the season. He held opponents to a .162 average and fanned 104 batters in 88.1 innings of work. Lefty SEAN BURNETT saw a huge decline in his numbers, as his ERA rose from 2.14 to 3.81 and his WHIP jumped from 1.14 to 1.32. This was mostly due to a diminishing strikeout rate (8.9 to 5.2 last year).
|NY METS: HITTING: The Mets will be moving in the fences at Citi Field by as much as 12 feet and reducing the height to eight feet, making the park more homer-friendly. The loss of Jose Reyes and his NL-leading average at the top of the order weakens an already subpar lineup. 3B DAVID WRIGHT is coming off his worst season (.254 BA, 14 HR, 61 RBI) and could be traded at the July 31 deadline. New OF ANDRES TORRES provides very little at the plate (.221 BA, .312 OBP), but the future is bright for youngsters OF LUCAS DUDA (.852 OPS) and 1B IKE DAVIS (.926 OPS), who missed most of 2011 with an ankle injury. OF JASON BAY (.245 BA) continues to be a colossal bust. SS RUBEN TEJADA will be tasked with trying to replace Reyes. The 22-year-old made great strides last year, batting .319 after August 1. DANIEL MURPHY hit .320 last year, and will start at second, possibly losing AB in a platoon with JUSTIN TURNER. C JOSH THOLE hits well enough to be an above-average starting catcher. |
STARTING PITCHING: With the fences moving forward at Citi Field, the entire Mets pitching staff takes a hit. JOHAN SANTANA will be ready for Opening Day, but it's hard to have much faith that he'll remain healthy for an entire season. His velocity on his fastball is not what it used to be, topping out in the high-80's. MIKE PELFREY benefitted most from the pitcher-friendly ballpark with serviceable home numbers (3.94 ERA, 1.38 WHIP) and atrocious road statistics (5.49 ERA, 1.56 WHIP). JONATHON NIESE was also much better at Citi Field (3.54 ERA) than he was on the road (5.33 ERA), but he posted 14 games of 6+ strikeouts for the second straight season. DILLON GEE began the season 7-0 with a 2.86 ERA and 1.08 WHIP, but closed the 2011 campaign with a 5.51 ERA and 1.59 WHIP in his final 17 starts. Knuckle-balling R.A. DICKEY posted a second straight solid season with New York, notching a 3.28 ERA and a solid 1.23 WHIP. At age 37, he hopes to keep his pitches dancing in the smaller home ballpark.
RELIEF PITCHING: Two former Blue Jays late-innings relievers, FRANK FRANCISCO and JON RAUCH, were signed from Toronto to pitch at the back of the bullpen. Francisco will likely get first crack at the ninth-inning role, saving 17 games last year and keeping his strikeout rate above one per inning for the fourth straight year. Rauch is an imposing figure at 6-foot-11, but he posted a 1.35 WHIP and paltry 6.2 strikeout rate last year. But 52 saves since 2008 makes him a worthy candidate for ninth-inning duty. RAMON RAMIREZ was part of the Andres Torres/Angel Pagan trade and he should be a valuable set-up man. He had a strong two-year stint with San Francisco, posting a 2.07 ERA and 1.09 WHIP.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (WASHINGTON-NY METS) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Nationals-Mets Preview* ========================
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO STATS Writer
Washington (9-6) at New York (7-7), 3:05 p.m. EDT
Superb pitching has been vital to the New York Mets' early success at Citi Field.
They may need another strong performance on the mound if they're going to beat Gio Gonzalez and the Washington Nationals on Saturday.
New York (8-7) has won five of seven home games thanks in large part to a 2.14 ERA - 1.87 from the rotation. That's a dramatic difference from the Mets' 6.42 ERA in eight road games.
They got another strong performance in the opener of this series Friday, when Matt Harvey outpitched Stephen Strasburg in a 7-1 victory, ending their eight-game home slide to Washington (9-7). Harvey allowed one run and four hits with seven strikeouts in seven innings.
"He pitched great, but that's the mark of a true ace," manager Terry Collins said. "Games like that can spread to great seasons."
Gonzalez (1-1, 4.50 ERA) pitched plenty of great games last season for the Nationals in finishing third in the Cy Young Award voting, and he certainly had his way with the Mets in his final three starts. The left-hander won all three while posting a 0.96 ERA.
That includes limiting New York to a .116 average in two road outings.
Gonzalez will try to continue that dominance while rebounding from Sunday's 9-0 loss to Atlanta. He was tagged for seven runs and seven hits - two homers - with three walks in five innings after compiling an 0.82 ERA over his first two starts.
"Our job is to make sure we keep them as close as possible, and I didn't do that," Gonzalez said.
Jeremy Hefner (0-2, 7.20) hasn't come close to doing that, either.
The right-hander has surrendered seven runs and four homers in four innings over his last two games - one start. Rain and snow postponed two games and have kept him from starting since a 7-3 loss at Philadelphia on April 10.
Hefner, however, was impressive in his only home start so far, yielding one run in six innings of a 7-5 loss to Miami on April 5.
Hefner's recent troubles may only continue since he lost all three starts versus the Nationals as a rookie last year while compiling a 5.29 ERA. Bryce Harper went 3 for 9 with a double, a triple and a homer in their matchups.
The Mets have 12 homers at Citi Field after going deep four times Friday, and they've hit at least one in each of their first seven home games for the first time since 2002.
They haven't put together a longer season-opening string at home since homering at least once in the first 14 games of their inaugural season of 1962.
Ike Davis and Lucas Duda hit two each Friday, and all three of Davis' have come at home. The first baseman is hitting .173 while tying Marlon Byrd with a team-high 15 strikeouts, but at 4 for 10 he's one of the few Mets who has had some success against Gonzalez.
Duda, 1 for 2 against Gonzalez, is 7 for 17 with four solo homers and seven runs over the past six games.
New York last won back-to-back home meetings with the Nationals when it swept a two-game set from May 18-19, 2011.
|Last Updated: 9/2/2014 6:19:37 AM EST|