The New York Mets are hoping to gain some momentum after last night’s walk-off victory against the Pittsburgh Pirates. They will send to the hill Shaun Marcum, who is looking for his first win and looking to snap a disturbing trend by Mets starting pitching.
Outside of ace Matt Harvey (4-0, 1.28 ERA), the rest of the current pitchers in the Mets starting rotation have combined to go 4-13, with none of them collecting an ERA below 4.63. This includes Marcum, who is 0-2 with a 7.20 ERA so far this season. Hopefully tonight’s start gets him back on track, as he is 2-2 with a 2.65 ERA in six career starts against the Pirates.
If the Mets want to remain in any consideration for a postseason berth, starter’s two through five need to start performing because winning one out of every five only when Harvey takes the hill isn’t going to cut it.
Tonight won’t be easy as the Mets will have to face the lefty Wandy Rodriguez. He is 5-2 with a 2.88 ERA in his career against the Mets. The .714 winning percentage is his highest against any opponent he has faced at least nine times.
The key for the Pirates will once again be rookie Starling Marte. He needs to continue to be a table-setter at the top of the order for guys like Andrew McCutchen and Pedro Alvarez. Marte is currently second in the National League in hits with 43 and fourth in the league in runs scored with 26. He has been a pleasant surprise for the Pirates, who are putting together their third straight solid first half of the baseball season.
Wandy will look to stop the Pirates’ losing streak at two and prevent a third straight walk-off win by Mets’ outfielder Mike Baxter.