|NY METS ( WHEELER )|
CLEVELAND ( KAZMIR )
|929||NY METS||+145||Ov 8,-115||+155||Ov 8,-115|
|930||CLEVELAND||-155||Un 8,-105||-165||Un 8,-105|
|vs Left-handed Starters||22-23||+3||25-17||4.1||0.244||0.310||4.5||0.250||0.309|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+2.8||4-3||5.9||0.310||0.367||4.6||0.296||0.329|
|vs Right-handed Starters||49-45||+6.4||37-53||4.3||0.245||0.317||4.3||0.252||0.324|
|Past 7 Games||3-4||-0.6||3-4||3.4||0.229||0.298||4.9||0.292||0.358|
|8/30/2013||GEE(R)||@ WASHINGTON||ZIMMERMANN(R)||3-2||W||182||7.5 ov||U||7||5||0||6||4||0|
|8/31/2013||WHEELER(R)||@ WASHINGTON||HAREN(R)||11-3||W||170||7.5 ov||O||17||8||0||11||9||0|
|9/1/2013||NIESE(L)||@ WASHINGTON||OHLENDORF(R)||5-6||L||140||8 ev||O||13||7||0||16||11||1|
|9/2/2013||MATSUZAKA(R)||@ ATLANTA||MAHOLM(L)||5-13||L||200||8.5 ev||O||10||8||1||17||10||1|
|9/3/2013||TORRES(R)||@ ATLANTA||MEDLEN(R)||1-3||L||210||7.5 un||U||8||8||0||7||5||0|
|9/4/2013||GEE(R)||@ ATLANTA||LOE(R)||5-2||W||125||8 ov||U||12||11||1||7||7||0|
|9/6/2013||WHEELER(R)||@ CLEVELAND||KAZMIR(L)|| |
|9/7/2013||NIESE(L)||@ CLEVELAND||KLUBER(R)|| |
|9/8/2013||MATSUZAKA(R)||@ CLEVELAND||SALAZAR(R)|| |
|9/12/2013||NIESE(L)||WASHINGTON|| || |
|9/13/2013|| ||MIAMI|| || |
|8/27/2013||SALAZAR(R)||@ ATLANTA||WOOD(L)||0-2||L||120||7 un||U||6||10||0||3||2||0|
|8/28/2013||MASTERSON(R)||@ ATLANTA||MAHOLM(L)||2-3||L||-110||7.5 un||U||9||7||0||10||11||0|
|8/29/2013||JIMENEZ(R)||@ ATLANTA||MEDLEN(R)||1-3||L||135||7.5 ev||U||7||6||0||8||5||0|
|8/30/2013||MCALLISTER(R)||@ DETROIT||PORCELLO(R)||2-7||L||135||9.5 ev||U||7||7||0||9||7||1|
|8/31/2013||KAZMIR(L)||@ DETROIT||SANCHEZ(R)||5-10||L||155||8.5 ev||O||9||5||0||15||9||0|
|9/1/2013||SALAZAR(R)||@ DETROIT||VERLANDER(R)||4-0||W||150||8.5 un||U||5||6||0||11||10||0|
|9/6/2013||KAZMIR(L)||NY METS||WHEELER(R)|| |
|9/7/2013||KLUBER(R)||NY METS||NIESE(L)|| |
|9/8/2013||SALAZAR(R)||NY METS||MATSUZAKA(R)|| |
|9/9/2013||JIMENEZ(R)||KANSAS CITY||SANTANA(R)|| |
|9/10/2013||MCALLISTER(R)||KANSAS CITY||GUTHRIE(R)|| |
|9/11/2013||KAZMIR(L)||KANSAS CITY||SHIELDS(R)|| |
|9/12/2013||KLUBER(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||DANKS(L)|| |
|9/13/2013|| ||@ CHI WHITE SOX|| || |
|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.
|CLEVELAND: HITTING: SS ASDRUBAL CABRERA's reinvented swing, modeled after Ben Zobrist, likely led to his power surge. OF GRADY SIZEMORE is back on a one-year deal, so he has plenty of financial incentive to stay healthy. But he will begin the season on the DL after back surgery. OF SHELLEY DUNCAN is expected to get more playing time in replacing Sizemore, but speedy OF EZEQUIEL CARRERA is also waiting for his shot. Injuries and off-the-field issues spoiled OF SHIN SOO-CHOO's 2011, but there's a good chance he bounces back . . . OF MICHAEL BRANTLEY does everything well enough to get a regular gig in center. C CARLOS SANTANA is developing into a middle-of-the-order run producer. DH TRAVIS HAFNER can't be trusted to stay healthy or to produce power numbers. After another down year, 1B MATT LaPORTA will have to sit and watch CASEY KOTCHMAN start at first more often than not. 3B LONNIE CHISENHALL will get his chance to play every day, but dwindling production the past two years is a concern. 2B JASON KIPNIS will get first crack at second base. He's got nice pop for a middle infielder. |
STARTING PITCHING: JUSTIN MASTERSON's strikeout rate continues to decline, and he still gets hit hard by lefties. Still, his strong groundball rate guarantees he's a solid middle-of-the-rotation arm at worst. His velocity dropped last year, and there's no telling if UBALDO JIMENEZ will ever regain his early 2010 form. He's the definition of high-risk, high-reward. DEREK LOWE was a decent middle-of-the-rotation arm in the National League, but now he must adjust to facing superior A.L. lineups . . . Healthy again, JOSH TOMLIN will remain in the rotation. He's hittable, throwing strikes and relying on his defense. Former Twins hurler KEVIN SLOWEY rounds out the staff. Although he posted a 6.67 ERA last year, Slowey has exhibited pinpoint control in his career with just 84 walks in 532.2 innings, tallying a .470 K-to-BB ratio. JEANMAR GOMEZ is a decent minor league arm, but his ceiling is low (long term and in the immediate future). CARLOS CARRASCO may not pitch in the bigs this year after Tommy John surgery.
RELIEF PITCHING: CHRIS PEREZ is entrenched as the closer, but he was a bit of a disappointment last season. His velocity dropped slightly, and his strikeout rate fell off a cliff. If Perez gets hurt, VINNIE PESTANO is next in line for saves. He may be undersized, but his stuff is overpowering. TONY SIPP proved he can get out righties too, but his value is as a lefty-on-lefty guy. Ditto for sidearmer JOE SMITH, who is deadly on righties. But it would be a surprise if he shut down lefties for a second straight year. RAFAEL PEREZ has been hampered by shoulder soreness in Spring Training, but the lefty should once again be serviceable in the late innings this year.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (NY METS-CLEVELAND) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Mets-Indians Preview* ======================
By JEFF BARTL STATS Writer
New York (63-75) at Cleveland (74-65), 7:05 p.m. EDT
Scott Kazmir once was in Zack Wheeler's position - considered one of the top pitching prospects for the New York Mets and a big piece of the franchise's future.
Traded in a lopsided deal that prevented him from ever donning a Mets uniform, Kazmir gets his first chance to face the team that drafted him when the playoff-hopeful Cleveland Indians host Wheeler and New York on Friday night.
Struggling to get into postseason contention as the 2004 trade deadline approached, New York shipped Kazmir - the 15th overall pick two years earlier and one of baseball's top prospects - to Tampa Bay as part of the deal that landed right-hander Victor Zambrano.
The Mets ended up finishing 20 games below .500 that season, and Zambrano would be gone in 2006.
Kazmir (7-7, 4.36 ERA), meanwhile, has had a solid major league career that includes seven appearances in postseason games. He's never faced the Mets, but he'll do so Friday while looking to help Cleveland (74-65) bolster its playoff chances.
The left-hander, though, is 0-3 with a 7.11 ERA over his last four starts after allowing four runs in five innings of a 10-5 loss to Detroit on Saturday. He went 4-0 with a 1.93 ERA in his previous nine.
"I just wasn't hitting my spots," Kazmir said after seeing his record fall to .500. "The ball would be left up or out over the middle of the plate."
The Indians hope Kazmir can bounce back as they seek a fourth victory in five games following Wednesday's 6-4 win over Baltimore. Yan Gomes and Ryan Raburn each drove in two runs for Cleveland, which trails Detroit by 6 1/2 games for the AL Central lead and is chasing Tampa Bay for the second wild-card spot.
The team brought a chicken onto the field for batting practice, a stunt manager Terry Francona said is a sign of his club being loose despite the pressure of the playoff race.
"I think it's great," Francona said. "Guys are trying to have fun. That's the best way to be a good team."
The Mets (63-75) won't have to worry about playing beyond the regular season for a seventh straight year, though Wheeler has given them hope for a bright future.
Wheeler (7-3, 3.36) and injured phenom Matt Harvey are expected to be a formidable duo at the top of New York's rotation for years to come. Wheeler is 3-1 with a 2.51 ERA over his last five starts after beating Washington on Saturday, giving up two runs in 6 2-3 innings of an 11-3 win.
The 23-year-old rookie had only three strikeouts but threw 69 of his 99 pitches for strikes.
"He's not trying to strike people out," manager Terry Collins said. "With the great arm that he had, people were looking for that ... when he got up here. I think while he was here, he said, 'Hey, look, I don't have to. I can get outs if I pitch to contact, and stay in games longer.'"
The Mets ended a three-game skid with a 5-2 win over Atlanta on Wednesday, though they announced it is likely first baseman Ike Davis would miss the rest of the season due to a strained right oblique.
Lucas Duda had a homer among three hits in that contest and is 7 for 14 over his last four.
|Last Updated: 10/21/2014 9:02:39 AM EST|