After letting a chance at a sweep slip through their fingers in Washington on Sunday, the New York Mets (3-1) got off to a sluggish start in Miami last night. The Mets fell behind the Miami Marlins (2-3) on several occasions, but they rallied each time before taking the lead for good with a four run ninth inning. That last charge, headlined by Pete Alonso’s first big league homer, was enough to help the Mets pick up a 4-3 victory. The Mets will now look to secure their second straight series victory to kick off the new year when they take on the Marlins again tonight. First pitch for the contest is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. at Marlins Park.
The Mets will send lefty Jason Vargas (7-9, 5.77 ERA in 2018) to the mound today for his first start of the season. Vargas struggled in the first half of 2018, nearly getting booted from the rotation, but a strong second half combined with an excellent camp has the Mets confident that the veteran left hander is due for a bounce-back year. The Marlins will counter with young righty Jose Urena (0-1, 9.64 ERA). Urena was hit hard by the Colorado Rockies on Opening Day, giving up six runs (five earned) in 4.2 innings to take his first loss of the year.
New York Mets Lineup:
- Vargas is 2-1 with a 3.18 ERA in three career starts against the Marlins.
- Urena has seen a ton of the Mets, going 5-5 with a 3.38 ERA in 14 appearances (including 10 starts) against them.
- Despite homering last night, Pete Alonso will sit as part of a pre-planned day off. Dominic Smith will make his first start of the season at first base and bat sixth.
- Brandon Nimmo is back in the lineup after getting a day off against lefty Caleb Smith yesterday. Nimmo will start in left field and bat leadoff.