The New York Mets hope to turn things around against the Philadelphia Phillies as they play four games in three days. The Mets have been dreadful at Citi Field where they have lost 17 out of their last 20 games at home. Their bats have disappeared over the last 18 innings as the combination of Blake Snell, Nathan Eovaldi and the Tampa Bay Rays bullpen shut them down over the weekend. The Phillies continue to surprise everyone and find themselves in a first place tie with the Atlanta Braves. Surprisingly the Mets have taken three out of the four games they have played against the Phillies in 2018.
Probable Pitching Matchups
(7/9, 4:10 PM) Zach Eflin (7-2, 2.97 ERA) vs. Zack Wheeler (2-6, 4.36 ERA)
(7/9, 7:10 PM) Aaron Nola (11-2, 2.41 ERA) vs. Corey Oswalt (0-1, 7.94 ERA)
(7/10, 7:10 PM) TBD vs. TBD (Great Matchup)
(7/11, 7:10 PM) TBD vs. Jacob deGrom (5-4, 1.79 ERA)
The Mets offense continues to flounder which has forced their batting average to drop to .229. The only team worse is the Baltimore Orioles, who swept a two game series from them earlier this year. Brandon Nimmo and Asdrubal Cabrera are having terrific years, but no one has the ability to drive them in once they get on base. The combination of mediocre hitters and frequent injures have led to this lackluster Mets offense.
On a positive note, Jacob deGrom was named the Mets lone All-Star. deGrom has been the only bright spot on a very disappointing team. He leads all of baseball in ERA and has a chance to start the midsummer classic. Max Scherzer was also named an All-Star and the partisan crowd in Washington may hold back deGrom from getting the start. The same deal happened to Matt Harvey and Clayton Kershaw in 2013. Harvey started the game at Citi Field, but Kershaw was having the better year at the time.
Phillies are Contenders Again
The Phillies have been the biggest surprise out of the National League this season. They have started July on fire, winning five of their first six games. The Phillies offense includes five guys with double digit home run totals and eight with double digit double totals. Outside of Carlos Santana, their regular lineup is all home grown players. This is the same trend many contenders like the Astros, Cubs and Yankees have established.
Aaron Nola is the lone Phillies All-Star for the Phillies this season. He has finally rounded in to the ace the Phillies felt he would be with he was taken seventh overall in the 2014 MLB Draft. He has 11 wins, a 2.41 ERA and 116 strikeouts in 116 innings. Zach Eflin has not had the same hype Nola has, but he has pitched like an ace as well. He has finally put it all together to put up a 2.97 ERA after two rough seasons to start his career.
Matchups to Lookout For
Odubel Herrera vs. Jacob deGrom: 6-27 (.222) Walk, 8 Strikeouts
Cesar Hernandez vs. Jacob deGrom: 3-16 (.188) 4 Walks, 4 Strikeouts
Asdrubal Cabrera vs. Aaron Nola: 4-11 (.273) Strikeout
Michael Conforto vs. Aaron Nola: 3-10 (.300) Home Run, Walk, 2 Strikeouts
Aaron Nola during night games in 2018: 6-1, 1.94 ERA, 55.2 IP, 55 Strikeouts
Hitters against Jacob deGrom w/RISP in 2018: 10-78 (.128) 35 Strikeouts