The New York Mets caught a bit of a break heading into their three-game series with the Los Angeles Dodgers. That break was that they will not have to face All-Star, reigning Cy Young Award winner and MVP candidate Clayton Kershaw whose start was moved up due to the Dodgers adjusting their rotation. The Mets were scheduled to face Kershaw in the opening game of the three-game series later this evening but instead will be facing Dan Haren.
The reason Kershaw’s start was moved up was due to fellow starting pitcher Zack Greinke dealing with some elbow discomfort. Thankfully for the Mets they miss Kershaw. He is pitching in a league of his own right now, and with how anemic the Mets’ offense has been of late it would have been easy pickings for the lefty.
Instead Kershaw took the ball last night against the San Diego Padres and was dominant as always. He went eight innings, allowing one run on three hits while punching out ten. The win put Kershaw at 15-3 on the season, his ERA is a minuscule 1.82 and he has struck out 184 batters in his 21 starts. Those numbers are truly remarkable; he is no doubt going to win another Cy Young Award, and he would have my vote for NL MVP.
In seven career starts against the Mets, Kershaw is 5-0 with a 1.62 ERA, so I’d say the Mets lucked out missing him. The Mets have had enough problems offensively of late. I could only imagine what Kershaw would have done against them. Missing him puts the Mets in a good position to jump out in front in this series when they take on Haren this evening.
No knock on Haren, but he is no Kershaw, and the Mets will have to take advantage of that. The Mets have handled Haren in the past in 11 career appearances which includes ten starts as Haren is 3-3 with a 5.25 ERA. It would be nice for the Mets to take a couple of games in this series in hopes that they can get back on track. I would like to see them finish off the year strong, but lately it looks like they are beginning to tail off like they do every year.
It is still going to be tough even though they miss Kershaw, but the Mets need to find a way to put some wins together. The Dodgers are a first-place team, and it would give the Mets a great deal of confidence if they were able to come out of this series with a couple of wins. We shall see what transpires over the course of this series, but whatever happens at least the Mets don’t have to face Kershaw.