This road trip has become a never ending nightmare for the New York Mets (26-26), who have been ravaged by injuries and bullpen meltdowns. The latest instance for both cases came in last night’s loss to the Atlanta Braves (32-22), when Steven Matz left after three innings with an injury to his left middle finger and the overworked bullpen couldn’t make leads of 4-0 or 6-2 stand up. The Mets are now 2-5 on the road trip after dropping two of the first three games in Atlanta, but they have a chance to salvage a split in the series finale tonight. First pitch for the final game of this four game set is scheduled for 7:35 pm at SunTrust Park.
The Mets will send lefty Jason Vargas (1-3, 10.62 ERA) to the mound tonight. Vargas was awful again last Saturday, giving up five runs in three innings of work against the Milwaukee Brewers despite being handed leads of 3-0 and 5-3, but was spared from a loss because the Milwaukee offense exploded after he left the game. The Mets originally had Vargas slated to start tomorrow night against the Chicago Cubs, but they bumped him up a day to fill in for the injured Noah Syndergaard since Vargas only threw 67 pitches against Milwaukee. The Braves will counter with their ace, Met killer Julio Teheran (4-2, 4.20 ERA). Teheran delivered a quality start last Friday, allowing three runs in six innings against the Boston Red Sox, but got stuck with a loss due to a lack of run support.
New York Mets Lineup:
- CF Brandon Nimmo
- 2B Asdrubal Cabrera
- LF Jose Bautista
- RF Jay Bruce
- C Kevin Plawecki
- 1B Adrian Gonzalez
- 3B Luis Guillorme
- SP Jason Vargas
- SS Amed Rosario
- Teheran has dominated the Mets this season, going 1-0 in two starts and allowing only six hits in 14 shutout innings of work while striking out 12.
- Vargas was lit up by the Braves back on May 3rd, giving up six runs in 4.2 innings to suffer his second loss of the season at Citi Field.
- After sitting out of last night’s game, Jay Bruce is back in the Mets’ lineup. Bruce will bat cleanup and play right field.
- The Mets will play the red hot Jose Bautista in left field, allowing Brandon Nimmo to move to center and give Michael Conforto the day off. Bautista will bat third while Nimmo remains in the leadoff spot.
- Kevin Plawecki will catch tonight, giving Devin Mesoraco the night off, and bat fifth.
- The Mets added relievers Tim Peterson, Buddy Baumann, and Scott Copeland to the roster prior to the game to add some much needed fresh arms to their beleaguered bullpen. Baumann takes the open roster spot created by Syndergaard’s trip to the disabled list, while the Mets sent down Jacob Rhame and Phillip Evans to create room for the two righties on the active roster.
- The Mets have transferred Juan Lagares to the 60 day disabled list and designated P.J. Conlon for assignment to create spots on the 40 man roster for Peterson and Copeland.