Manager: Terry Collins (7th year)
Last 10 games: 2-8
Who to watch: SS Asdrúbal Cabrera (.276 with 52 RBIs, 31 doubles), 3B Wilmer Flores (.271 with 18 HR, 52 RBIs), OF Brandon Nimmo (.268), RHP Jacob deGrom (15-9 with 3.55 ERA), LHP Jerry Blevins (3.04 ERA)
Season series vs. Nationals: 5-11
Sept. 22: RHP Edwin Jackson vs. RHP Robert Gsellman, 7:10 p.m., MASN
Sept. 23: RHP Stephen Strasburg vs. RHP Matt Harvey, 7:10 p.m., MASN
Sept. 24: RHP Max Scherzer vs. RHP Jacob deGrom, 1:10 p.m., MASN
Inside the Mets:
Let’s face it: The Mets have been one of the biggest disappointments in baseball this season. It’s not entirely by their own fault, however, as this team has been struck by one of the worst streaks of bad luck we’ve seen over the past few years. The Mets have had 28 total disabled list stints this season, second-most in the National League. The injury bug found it’s way to Queens and made a nest. Better call the exterminator. Now injuries happen and that’s a pefectly acceptable excuse for a team’s struggles, but there are most likely other reasons as well. For comparison, the Nationals have had 25 total DL stints and they were the first team in the major leagues to clinch a division title this summer. So there are probably many reasons as to why the Mets didn’t live up to expectations this year. And, of course with New York being New York, there has been plenty of chatter as to why that is and what to do about it.
Some reports have already come out as to how the Mets will change this offseason. The contracts of general manager Sandy Alderson and manager Terry Collins expire at the end of the season, but it has been reported that the GM will return next year while the 68-year-old skipper will retire. Nothing has been made official yet, but both figured to be on the hot seat entering this offseason anyway after the club’s first sub-.500 season since 2013.
Other noteworthy news coming out of New York the past couple of days included Yoenis Céspedes - who has been shut down for the season since straining his hamstring in a game at Nats Park last month - telling reporters that he plans to adjust his training routine this winter. Céspedes will only have played 81 games this season, thanks to multiple injuries, and has a long history of missing significant time throughout a season. The slugger will emphasize running this offseason to take better care of his legs, hoping to spend more time on the field than on the bench as the Mets try to get back to the playoffs next year.
The Mets rotation was shifted around for this weekend’s series as Jacob deGrom has been dealing with nausea and an upset stomach and was pushed back to Sunday. Robert Gsellman starts tonight’s opener at Citi Field with a 7-7 record and 5.22 ERA in 23 games (20 starts). The right-handed rookie has not fared well against the Nats this year, going 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in two starts. Matt Harvey, Saturday’s starter, has also been in the news this past week, with Alderson saying the Mets won’t part ways with the injury-plagued righty. Harvey has gone 1-3 with a 13.19 ERA in four starts since returning from a 2 1/2-month absence due to a right shoulder injury. deGrom, meanwhile, has been the Mets’ best and most consistent pitcher in 2017. He leads the team with a 15-9 record, 3.55 ERA and 228 strikeouts. Against the Nationals this year, deGrom is 3-1 with a 2.22 ERA in four starts.
Jerry Blevins continues to have a strong season in New York’s bullpen. The southpaw has a 3.04 ERA, 1.35 WHIP and 68 strikeouts in 47 1/3 innings. AJ Ramos remains the closer with a 4.08 ERA and 27 saves in 30 chances. Although, he did blow his last save opportunity on Tuesday in Miami.