The New York Yankees start a critical weekend series with the crosstown New York Mets tonight. The Yankees are 2-8 in their last ten games and have just been swept by the Toronto Blue Jays in a four-game embarrassing series where they only got 8 runs in the series to the Jays 25. The Mets have been playing a bit better, going 6-4 in their last ten. They are 5 games out of first place in the NL East.
For the Yankees, this weekend series will tell if they stay in wild-card contention. As of this writing, the Yankees lost their home field advantage and slipped to the number two spot in the standings. The surging Blue Jays are now just .5 games out. Also, the Seattle Mariners and the Oakland Athletics are just 2 games out. So weekend play will be very telling.
The Los Angeles Dodgers have a commanding lead in the wild card standings in the National League, being 13 games ahead. The Mets are 5 games out, but with 22 games left to play, they still have a chance of getting a wild card berth. However, if they are swept by the Yankees this weekend, any hope for them is out the window. These two situations make it a must-win for both teams.
Tonight, September 10, 7:10 pm EDT
Tonight when the New Yor Mets take the field, Tylor Megill will be on the mound for the Mets. He is a lefty that is 2-4 with a 4.20 ERA and 78 strikeouts over 14 games. The 6′ 7″ 230 pounder started his season well, but the Mets have lost five of them over his last seven starts. No Yankee has ever faced Megill.
The New York Yankees will have Jordan Montgomery on the mound. “Monty” is 5-5 with a 3.47 ERA and a very respectable 131 strikeouts. Although Montgomery has pitched much better than his numbers suggest, he has gotten little run support in his games. If Franciso Lindor is in the lineup, Monty will have to be very careful with him as he has been successful off him to the tune of .571 in seven at-bats.
Tonight’s game will be on the YES Network, SNY, and MLBN out of market.
Saturday, September 11, 7:45 pm EDT
The New York Mets will send Taijuan Walker to the mound in the second game. Walker is a righty that is 7-9 with an ERA of 4.15 and 129 strikeouts. Walker, who was acquired in the offseason, has been spotty for the Mets. Unfortunately for the Mets, his last win came on July 3rd. At one point in the season he the Mets lost seven of his starts in a row. He didn’t get the win in his last start, but the Mets did. Walker gives up home runs, lots of them. In his career, Giancarlo Stanton has hit better off him than any other Yankee.
Corey Kluber will take the mound Saturday night for the Yankees. Kluber is 4-3 with a 3.69 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 12 starts. Kluber, a two-time Cy Young Award winner, had not pitched in nearly two years when he signed with the Yankees when the Yankees signed him. He got off to a slow start but eventually got better to the point that he had a no-hitter on May 19th. But after a few starts, he came down with shoulder tightness and was on the IL for 3 months. In his last two starts since coming off the IL, he has been rusty. He gave up 5 earned runs in his last outing against the Angels. This game will be on the FOX Network.
Sunday, September 12, 8:08 pm EDT
Sunday evening, the Mets will have Carlos Carrasco on the mound. He is a righty with a 1-2 record and an elevated ERA of 5.88 with 32 strikeouts. The Mets acquired Carrasco in the offseason, but due to a hamstring injury, he didn’t pitch the first game until July 30th and only got his first win of the season this past Tuesday off of the Marlins. Rizzo, Gallo, and Odor have been every successful off him, all hitting over .300. Rizzo, in 4 at-bats, has three hits off him.
As of this writing, the New York Yankees have no idea or are not saying who will pitch Sunday night’s game. The normal rotation would have Jameson Taillon on the mound, but he is on the IL. After that, it could be Gerrit Cole if his hamstring issue is resolved. After that, if the Yankees trust Andrew Heaney, it could be him. But more likely, it will turn out to be a bullpen game. Sunday’s game will be on ESPN.