By: Billy Lewis
The New York Yankees will travel to Citi Field to take on the New York Mets for the first time this season. This weekend series sees two teams on totally different tracks this season. The Yankees come in sporting the best winning percentage (40-18, .690%) in Major League Baseball.
The Mets however, sit in fourth place in the NL East and after an 11-1 start, sit at 27-32. The Mets are coming off of a two-game sweep at the hands of the Baltimore Orioles. The Mets lost Wednesday afternoon 1-0. They lost Tuesday 2-1 and so their offense has been nonexistent.
Now the Yankees did not score through 9 innings, or ten, eleven, or twelve innings on Wednesday. Then they eventually beat the Blue Jays 3-0 using home runs from Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton in the 13th inning.
The pitching matchups would appear to favor the Mets in this series. Tonight sees Masahiro Tanaka (7-2 4.79 ERA) against Jacob deGrom (4-0 1.49 ERA). Clearly, deGrom’s ERA and record stand out. Having only four wins with an ERA under 1.50 almost seems criminal. The key for Tanaka tonight will be to keep the game close so the Yankees can try to exploit the Mets bullpen.
Saturday sees Steven Matz (2-4 3.42 ERA) and Domingo German (0-4 5.44 ERA). German is still looking for his first career win and Saturday is a great opportunity. Despite German’s high ERA he has shown flashes of greatness. The struggling Mets lineup will give German a chance to gain confidence and get his first big league win.
Sunday Night is the gem of the weekend series. Sunday Night Baseball will pit Luis Severino (9-1 2.20 ERA) against Noah Syndergaard (4-1 3.06 ERA). I would give the edge to Severino in this matchup because he tends to pitch deeper into games. Severino averages almost 6.2 IP per start while Syndergaard is only a tad over 5.2 IP.
Overall you have to like the Yankees chances this series. Their lineup has been better and they have a stronger bullpen than their crosstown rivals. It should be interesting to see how the Yankees shape their lineup without the benefit of a DH. My guess would be Hicks sits tonight and Gardner sits Saturday.
Luckily this season we have six games against the two New York rivals. After this weekend they will play again right after the All-Star break (July 20-22). The winner of this series will be that much closer to clinching the summer Subway Series.