The New York Mets head from one cold city to another as they begin a three-game series with the Chicago Cubs. Each team comes in on a different trend; the Mets sit in first place while the Cubs are in last place in the NL Central. Once again, there is no guarantee that every game in the series is played this week due to impending ugly weather.
Sees “❗️Freeze Warning” for Chicago today. 🌨 pic.twitter.com/TktCufckY0
— New York Mets (@Mets) April 20, 2021
The Mets offense is not struggling to get hits but is failing to hit for power and hit with runners in scoring position. They have a .246 team average but just a .353 slugging percentage which is the third-worst in baseball. The Mets hit just .194 with runners in scoring position, but they look amazing compared to the MLB worst .137 average the Cubs own.
What separates these teams is their pitching. The Mets 2.93 team ERA is fifth in baseball, while the Cubs 4.98 mark is third from the bottom. When scoring is not coming easy, the Mets have covered their tracks with amazing pitching. Jacob deGrom (0.45) and Marcus Stroman (0.90) are both in the top-10 of MLB’s ERA leaders.
Taijuan Walker takes the mound and has been stellar in his first two starts. Walker has allowed three runs in 10.1 innings pitched with 12 strikeouts. His five walks are high than where he wants to be, but he can attack the inconsistent Cubs offense tonight.
Former Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta takes the mound for the Cubs and has pitched very well in his second go-around in Chicago. Arrieta has not thrown more than 90 pitches in any of his three starts but has gone at least five innings in all of them. The 35-year old has plenty of experience against the Mets and has a 3.09 ERA in 16 career starts against them.
Matchups To Lookout For
Taijuan Walker vs. Joc Pederson: 7-for-15 (.467), 2 Doubles, Home Run, Walk, 2 Strikeouts
Jake Arrieta vs. Jeff McNeil: 15-for-26 (.577), Double, Home Run, Strikeouts
Jake Arrieta vs. Brandon Nimmo: 5-for-16 (.312), Double, Home Run, 2 Walks, 4 Strikeouts