DJ Stewart hit for the cycle! The latest on Brandon Nimmo and the clear frontrunner for the last rotation spot
Brandon Nimmo is confident he will be ready for opening day, plus notes on the race for the final spot in the rotation
What’s Up with the Mets? 🌴
The Mets fell to the Cardinals 8-7 at Clover Park (Box)
David Peterson both struck out four and walked four in four scoreless innings of work
Tylor Megill was less successful in his outing - he gave up three runs and walked five in 3.2 innings of work
DJ Stewart went 4-for-4 and hit for the cycle, the first spring training cycle since 2020
Luis Guillorme went 2-for-4 with a run scored
Danny Mendick also went 2-for-4 while driving in a run
Injury Updates 🏥
Brandon Nimmo feels “a lot better” and is hoping he will be ready to go on Opening Day
Today’s Game 🦩
Game 2️⃣1️⃣ of 3️⃣0️⃣
Match-up: Mets vs. Nationals
Where: Ballpark of the Palm Beaches - West Palm Beach, FL
Starters: RHP Justin Verlander vs. LHP Patrick Corbin
When: 6:05 PM EDT
Where to Watch: n/a
Right now, there’s no question who the fifth starter in the Mets rotation is… ✍🏻
When José Quintana was hit with a lesion on his rib which required surgery and a lengthy stay on the injured list, that opened up a competition for the final spot in the Mets’ rotation, while at the same time shortening the Mets starting pitch depth in the process.
Joey Lucchesi, David Peterson, Tylor Megill and Elieser Hernandez were thrusted into that competition. Lucchesi - who has since been optioned to Triple-A - and Hernandez struggled, leaving Peterson and Megill as Buck Showalter’s final two options to fill the vacancy, and as it stands now Peterson really should have the edge.
The southpaw has had a strong spring. In four games he has yet to allow a run and has struck out 13 batters in 12 innings of work. His outing on Sunday in Port St. Lucie wasn’t his best of the spring, but at the same time he showed that grit which earned Showalter’s trust as the, “next man up” for the rotation in 2022. The danger with him is walks and strike quality, which again he struggled with in this latest outing. The good news is he managed to work around them and kept his spring ERA spotless. The 2022 season was a step forward for the 27-year-old, who ended the year with a 3.83 ERA and 126 strikeouts in 105.2 innings. Walks continued to be a problem as he issued 4.1 walks per nine innings which was a slight increase over the previous year.
This spring he has also had the luxury of having two Cy Young winners around and he credited both Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer in helping him prepare for the upcoming season.
As for Megill, his spring has been solid, just not as successful as Peterson. In four games this spring, he has a 3.00 ERA but only has eight strikeouts in twelve innings and he got lit up on Sunday against St. Louis. Megill had a lost season last year between injuries and ineffectiveness, appearing in just 15 games and ended the year with a 5.13 ERA and 51 strikeouts in 47.1 innings. The Mets tested the waters with Megill as a reliever towards the end of 2022 and he didn’t fare well in that role, showing diminished stuff in the process.
Given his performance and that Peterson is a lefty in a rotation that is already full of righties, he leaves little question who should get the nod to join the other four as a starter on Opening Day.
Around the League 🚩
Team USA advanced to the finals of the WBC with a 14-2 win over Cuba (ESPN)
José Altuve was diagnosed with a fractured thumb after getting hit by a pitch in the World Baseball Classic. It will require surgery and there is no timetable for his return (ESPN)
The Rockies signed utilityman Jurickson Profar to a one-year deal worth $7.7 million (ESPN)
Juan Soto suffered a mild oblique strain and is considered day-to-day (San Diego Union Tribune)