The New York Mets fly across the country after a disappointing sweep to the Los Angeles Dodgers and face the San Francisco Giants. The Giants have the best record in baseball, while the Mets cannot seem to get out of their own way by creating new heartbreaking ways to lose. Playing on the west coast means a late-night start of 9:45 p.m. ET from Oracle Park.
Just landed in San Francisco. No rest for the weary. Excited to compete on the West Coast! @Mets
— Marcus Stroman (@STR0) August 16, 2021
The struggles on offense were evident in the series against the Dodgers, where they went 2-for-27 with runners in scoring position. Their inability to hit for power has hampered any offensive rallies they put together. The Mets have a .380 slugging percentage this season which is fourth worse in baseball. They are the only team in the bottom five who is not in last place.
The Giants are a complete 180 of where the Mets are. Expectations were minimal in a division where the Dodgers and San Diego Padres were supposed to reign supreme. The Giants flipped the odds against everyone and have become a powerhouse, leading the NL with 176 home runs despite playing in their spacious home ballpark. Their pitching has also propelled them to success with a 3.22 ERA which is the second-best in baseball.
Rich Hill looks to bounce back after his last outing against the Washington Nationals. After the game was suspended after one inning, Hill took over in the second for Carlos Carrasco. Hill only lasted three and allowed the same amount of runs while striking out four. Over 18 innings with the Mets, he has a 5.00 ERA and struck out 12 batters. In eight career starts at Oracle Park, Hill has a 3.21 ERA.
Kevin Gausman is the Giants starter and is putting together the best season of his career. The 2021 All-Star has a 2.29 ERA which is sixth in MLB to go along with a .182 average against, the second-best in baseball. Gausman is in the middle of a small skid with a 5.16 ERA in his last five starts and has only gone more than five innings once.
Matchups To Lookout For
Rich Hill vs. Brandon Belt: 6-for-15 (.400), 2 Doubles, Home Run, 3 Walks, 2 Strikeouts
Rich Hill vs. Buster Posey: 10-for-20 (.500), Double, Home Run, Walk, Strikeout
Rich Hill vs. Wilmer Flores: 4-for-12 (.333), 2 Doubles, Home Run, 5 Strikeouts
Rich Hill vs. Brandon Crawford: 6-for-18 (.333), 5 Walks, 4 Strikeouts
Kevin Gausman vs. Kevin Pillar: 14-for-39 (.359), Double, 2 Walks, 10 Strikeouts
Kevin Gausman vs. Jeff McNeil: 4-for-6 (.667), Double