Mets come out of off-day ready for their close-up vs. the Dodgers
The Mets enjoyed a much needed off-day on Monday. Plus, how a sequel vs. the Dodgers could prove to re-energize this club in a big way.
Just Mets on Playback 📺
Our next live watch-along will take place tonight as the Mets kick-off a National League clash with the Dodgers at 7:10 PM EDT! Watch the entire game and interact with hosts Rich MacLeod and Andrew Claudio live on Playback!
What’s Up with the Mets? ⚾
The Mets were off on Monday — they open a three-game series with the Dodgers as they continue their 10-game homestand
Atlanta was also off on Monday, keeping New York’s lead in the NL East at an even three games
The Mets were listed at No. 2 of MLB.com’s latest Power Rankings
Injury Updates 🏥
RHP Drew Smith (straight right lat) threw off a mound on Sunday for the first time following a two-week shutout and is expected to return to the big leagues in the next 2-3 weeks
Playoff Odds Tracker 🎲
The Mets are 82-47 and lead the Braves by three games in the National League East with 33 games to go. They are on-pace for 102 wins which would be their best mark since the 1986 season (108)
The Mets have the second-easiest schedule down the stretch of the season (.447 opposing winning percentage, per Tankathon)
Playoff odds (FanGraphs):
Make the playoffs: 100 percent ↔️
Win the National League East: 82.5 percent ⬇️
Clinch a first round bye: 82.3 percent ⬇️
Win the World Series: 17.3 percent ⬆️
Today’s Game 🗓
Match-up: Mets (81-46) vs. Dodgers (89-38)
Where: Citi Field — Flushing, New York
Starters: RHP Taijuan Walker (10-3, 3.38 ERA) vs. LHP Andrew Heaney (2-1, 1.94 ERA)
When: 7:10 PM EDT
Where to Watch: SNY, Playback
Who doesn’t love a good sequel? 📝
The Empire Strikes Back. The Dark Knight. The Godfather Part II. Sometimes, on rare occasions, sequels can be even more satisfying than the originals.
Who’s to say that can’t be the case for Mets vs. Dodgers?
After an early season bout on the West Coast that resulted in what some considered to be one of the most gratifying series splits you could ever get, the top two clubs in the National League are set to face-off for the second and final time in the 2022 regular season.
Some may say that it’s only three games at the end of the Summer, but the Mets know all-too-well that this can be the ultimate regular season litmus test for their ball club.
“It matters,” Max Scherzer said after Sunday’s game. “You play this game to face the best. Obviously, they’ve been one of the best teams in all of baseball. For them to come into town, you want to beat them.”
Prior to their series split earlier this season, the Mets had gone 5-22 vs. these same Dodgers since the start of 2017. Since defeating them in the 2015 NLDS, New York had taken a series from L.A. just once, winning two-of-three in September 2018. Conversely in that same timespan, they’d been swept by the Dodgers four times.
This is a team that for years had outclassed the Mets and that coming into this season New York knew they’d eventually have to get past. They entered their last series with that very attitude and it showed, as they rebounded after a tough first two games to earn a very hard-fought split of the four-game set.
I expect no different entering Tuesday night, as the Mets could use a jolt of electricity after some recent sleepy performances – for this team, they’re still 6-4 over their last 10 games while not playing their best baseball, by the way.
This year’s Mets club has stepped up nearly every time they’ve been tested throughout this season, going 4-4 against the Dodgers and Yankees (combined 80 games over .500), 9-7 against the Braves (29 games over .500) and 14-5 against the Phillies (16 games over .500). There’s no reason to think that they won’t be ready for their big-time marquee matchup in this Hollywood sequel — except this time, they play in New York.
Things sure as hell won’t be easy for the Mets, as they’re facing a Dodgers team that’s 44-10 over their last 54 games. Despite the recent injuries to their starting staff – Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler and now Tony Gonsolin have all been placed on the injured list — this Los Angeles organization has become an absolute machine and can still throw out multiple starters with sub-2 ERAs in this series as they will with Andrew Heaney and Dustin May.
But one thing is for sure — this team is ready for their close-up.
“It’s a great opportunity for us,” Scherzer said. “A great challenge for us to go out there and face them.”
Down on the Farm 🌾
All Mets minor league affiliates were off on Monday.
Mets Top 30 Prospects (MLB.com)
Around the League 🚩
Cardinals DH Albert Pujols homered against the 450th different pitcher in his career, breaking Barry Bonds’ all-time mark in the club’s win over the Reds
The Dodges lost RHP Tony Gonsolin to the injured list with a forearm strain, but were able to outlast the Marlins with a 3-2 win in extras
Twins RHP Kenta Maeada is not expected to pitch this season following Tommy John surgery last year