Nationals Baseball: Mets Mets Mets Mets

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Mets Mets Mets Mets

Four games.  In NYC.  The Mets are hot. There isn't going to be a better time for the Mets to close the gap between them and the Nationals.  In fact, there won't be another H2H series until Labor Day. If the Mets can't win here they'll have to rely on other teams to help them

That's why any series win here (3-1 or a sweep) would go a long way to getting the Nats the East crown they want. It's starting to get late in the year, to the point where it's harder to lose that ground once you make it up. Just look at last 7 games.  Nats weren't on, Mets were.  Mets gained two games.  At that pace they'd need to play 20+ games, or almost a month to make up 6 games. 

I know. I know. You can look through 125 of baseball history and find examples of whatever you want. So sure, you can lose a 6 game lead, in 6 games. But what is forgotten / ignored is that you are just as likely to turn a 6 game lead into a 12 game lead. But the above paragraph is more typical especially with no H2H. If the Nats take a 6+ lead after this series they should have a month sized cushion.

What will the dog days bring? A nice two months until the Mets try to mount a furious finish? A daily dogfight? This series helps set that up.

Win

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Huh. Maybe letting Matt Harvey pitch that many innings last year wasn't the greatest idea in the world after all.

I'm sure Syndergaard and Matz will be just fine though. What could possibly go wrong with letting a guy with a bone spur in his arm continue to pitch on a normal schedule? No risk whatsoever.

I'm guessing we're not going to be hearing John Feinstein run his big know-it-all mouth very much these next few days.

Zimmerman11 said...

Baker had the right idea but the wrong move, we should let Werth leadoff and keep Bryce in three hole... let revery work it out in the 8 or 9 spot... less ABs for Bryce isn't the right decision, results notwithstanding.

NotBobby said...

Giolito v. Colon
Strasburg v. Syndergaard
Scherzer v. TBD
Gonzalez v. Matz

Only feel strongly regarding Scherzer, but HRs could always kill his start.
I expect Matz to pitch better than Gonzalez.
That leaves the other two games to decide the series.

I agree, 1 win will be enough, any more is a cherry on top.

Fries said...

Personally I'd like to see a split. In the grand scheme of things 1 win would be sufficient, but getting the split (or a series win) a week after a sweep would definitely start to play mind games with the LOLMets. Giving them the series win after they just swept the Cubs is not the kind of momentum I personally want to see, even if it is going into the break.

And looking at the pitching matchups, I'd say the Nats have a decent shot to do just that. Colon has one of the highest strike rates in the league, so come out swinging and it'll be easy enough to tag him for a few runs. Hope Giolito goes 6 and there's one win I would think. Then Stras v Syndergaard is a toss up, but with how Thor has been lately I'd lean towards Stras. Scherzer is always a toss up since he can be lights out and still get the loss miraculously (see Brewers, Milwaukee). And then Gio could easily beat Matz in a 10-9 kind of score with how they've both been lately

PotomacFan said...

Dusty finally moved Rendon ahead of RZim in the line up. And what do you know, RZim hit a home run. I'd like to see Werth, Rendon, Harper, Murphy, Ramos, RZim, Espy, Revere. If Dusty insists on having Revere bat lead off, then move him there, and keep the rest of the order as in the previous sentence.

Who thinks Taylor will be recalled? I think we are going to see Trea Turner come up, bat lead off, and play CF, platooning with Revere.

BxJaycobb said...

Regarding pitching with bone spurs....just to be clear, apparently almost all pitchers have bone spurs. It's just the big ones that cause discomfort that are a problem (like Matz). Apparently Thor's is really minor and barely existent. I doubt he won't be able to pitch through it. By the same token, I'd be shocked to see Matz get through the year. If you look at the amount he throws his slider, he's gone from throwing it about 20% of the time, which is quite high, to not throwing it at all. That tells me he's very affected. So don't count on Thor being shut down. But I think we will see both Harvey and Matz on DL at same time some time soon...

Jay said...

Don't forget Matz got a cortisone shot in his elbow as well. I feel sort of bad for Harvey. The Mets really mishandled him last year in my opinion, and are mishandling Syndergaard and Matz right now. I'm hoping for 2 wins, but would be happy with 1. Don't get swept is what I am worrying about. I don't feel like any of the games are a lock. Hopefully, Sherzer will pitch like the #1 guy that he is and we win that one. If so, then we only need 1 more from the other 3. Citi field will be crazy. I think the Brewers series was tough bc the Nats were looking to the Mets series a little bit. Shouldn't be too hard to get motivated for these. We'll see what happens.

NotBobby said...

PotomacFan -

I was at Chiefs game on Tuesday and watched TT in CF, He looked fine. Arm was good enough, but got beat on several balls over his head i am not sure that he can read the flyballs yet all that well. He did SMASH a homer on second pitch of the game and laced a liner back up the middle and promptly stole second base, so that was nice...

mike k said...

It surprises me that Taylor would be sent down for anyone not named Turner. Reason being he's 1) giving the team value now, as a righty platoon with Revere, and hasn't performed poorly in that role since "losing" the starting job, and 2) doesn't "need at-bats." 21 year-olds who are future starters need at-bats. I think the Nats brass knows that ship has sailed on Taylor. My guess is "needs at-bats" is a nice PR white lie.

That's why I agree with PotomacFan that we'll see Turner come up sooner rather than later and take over Taylor's old role. Perhaps sending Taylor down just happened early because of Papelbon's return, and after the All-Star break they will make a decision on what reliever to send down to make room for Turner. Doesn't make sense to give Revere at-bats against lefties for the rest of the year.

Sorry I know this post is off-topic - here you go: yes I agree that winning games against our division rival is a good thing ;)

Robot said...

Drop Revere to the 9-hole, and move J-Dub to leadoff.

PotomacFan said...

I have to think that Michael A. is on the trading block. Unfortunately, he is not worth much.

Bjd1207 said...

@mike k - I think they wanted the extra reliever arm for the rest of this week heading into the break. So I expect we'll see a roster move bringing back some position player in exchange for a pen arm before the 2nd half kicks off. But I think Taylor or Turner is equally possible at this point.

A couple other notes - Revere doesn't have bad career splits against lefties, and this year he's actually posting reverse splits I think. I don't think he needs a platoon partner, and if we're talking about a 4OF job I'd prefer Taylor back up rather than Turner.

Anonymous said...

I saw the Chiefs in Durham last night. Turner looked fine as CF but didn't have to make too many, if any, challenging plays. He went 2-4 with a double, stole 3rd, but also had two Ks and looked fooled by some off-speed stuff, so K rate could be a problem in the majors.

Cole was having problems with his control and got hammered as a result; a 4+ ERA in the minors and getting caved in by a mediocre Bulls team doesn't make him look like even a legit AAA guy. Looks like SP depth is still a concern for the big league team.

I'm disappointed that I may have permanently missed the window to see Giolito in the minors, but it was nice to see Lombardozzi playing, even if it looks like he isn't on track to ever crack the majors again.

Bjd1207 said...

@Anon 8:59 - Luckily I think Cole at this point is pretty far down the prospective MLB rotation. Giolito, Voth, and now probably Lopez ahead of him

Mythra said...

Recipe to win the NL East includes winning the head to heads against the Marlins and Mets this year. Split is 4 games off the schedule with no ground lost. Just glad that Thor vs Stras is on Friday night so those idiots at Fox can't swoop in and take the game. Someone tell Max that he's got a national audience on Saturday and he'll be pumped, just hope the AAA starter they'll bring up won't look like Cy Young against us.

Only game that scares me is the Gio start, but all I know Matz's arm might fall off at the elbow. Would love to see Dusty shuffle the rotation to be Max, Stras, Tanner, Ross (Or Giolito), then Gio (Who is actually pitching like our #5 guy now.)

At least that would match Gio against more #5 starters and give the team a chance to compete.

Also, I know I was dogging on Tanner earlier in the year with some inconsistent starts. Crow does not taste well and is not filling, but I acknowledge my misplaced criticism.

Bjd1207 said...

@Mythra - Can confirm. Crow does not taste any better in Espinosa or Zimmerman flavors either

Kenny B. said...

I think overall the Nats have the pitching advantage in the series, but to me the decisive factor will be the offenses. We've seen the Mets and Nats offenses each go silent for stretches this season. The Mets' offense seems to have been alive lately, and so was the Nats' during the Cincinnati series, but that 1-0 Scherzer loss to Milwaukee is lingering in the back of my mind.

I suppose we'll just have to wait for them to play the games. I would love to see the re-awakening of BRYCE and to see Murphy continue to play Mets-killer, but I'll take another Danny Explode-inosa if that's what will beat the Mets. Zimmerman may be finally coming around for his patented hot-streak, and naturally we would all love to see him join the fun at Citi field.

Eric said...

Going back to the last thread for a second, this is the kind of thing that I feel Harper rails against:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/mlb-benched-bryce-harpers-super-patriotic-fourth-of-july-bat/2016/07/06/e5489fac-43a5-11e6-bc99-7d269f8719b1_story.html?hpid=hp_local-news_harper-1155am%3Ahomepage%2Fstory

I think he feels baseball would be more popular if that kind of "flare" or whatever weren't so rigidly curtailed. I don't think his attending the home run derby would ever do anything to help that cause.

Anonymous said...

Examining the Nats/Mets series in 2016, it seems the reasons for the Nats victories are less likely to repeat than the reasons for the Mets victories. Consider the Nats wins...

Nats have won 3 games when Harvey has started. Two of those during Harvey's early season slump. The last when Harvey was taken out due to the rain delay.

Nats won a game against Thor recently when he had his worst performance of the season.

Nats won a game against Verrett when Matz was scratched.

Nats won a game against Colon when he control issues, likely the result of the off the field issues.

BxJaycobb said...

Harvey possibly going to have surgery and out for the year.

Cespedes has been great for the Mets, but they have to be nervous that dealing Michael Fulmer was an astronomical loss of value. Looks like he might be an ace and boy do they need the pitching depth with every starter dealing with injury except DeGrom (and Wheeler not back until August-September due to setbacks).

BxJaycobb said...

I don't root for anybody to get hurt, and I CERTAINLY don't want anybody to have career-threatening injury, which this has been in the past.
http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/16866238/mets-pitcher-matt-harvey-weighing-season-ending-surgery

Ric said...

Going back to yesterday's blog entry:

@SM, " I don't buy that it has no, or even marginal, effect on a hitter's second half performance."

@Harper, "Selection bias. A lot of guys that make the HR derby do so bc they are having unusually powerful first halfs, halfs that are on some level out of character. So the second halves are less about "decline" and more about returning to normal. You also have to be careful looking at some of these stats because it's HR rate that matters not HRs. There are a good 20+ games less in the 2nd "half" so there is going to be fewer HRs."

Perhaps Bryce doesn't want to participate in the Derby because HE thinks it effects his second-half performance. In 2013, Bryce hits 13 HRs in 201 ABs before the ASG. After the ASG/HRDerby, Bryce hits 7 HRs in 223 ABs.

We can agree that Bryce was not having an "unusually powerful first half". And seven HRs in half a season is not "returning to normal" for Bryce.

I'm not arguing that there is cause/cessation here. But in Bryce's mind, there probably is.

Anonymous said...

Giolito doesn't have an H or R in his name . . .

NotBobby said...

I think this game just made it more likely that Chapman will be a Nat... Perez got whooped.

NotBobby said...

Solis too

Froggy said...

OMG Perez is terrible.

sirc said...

All of Oli's showmanship is fun when he and the team are winning. But the man can't get right handed hitters out. His splits passed alarming in April and are at red alert level in July. He must not face a right handed hitter unless the team is up 4 or more runs.

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