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After struggling mightily against the Atlanta Braves (7-6) a year ago, the New York Mets (9-4) have gotten their season series off to a good start in 2019. The Mets have won the first two games of their four game set with the Braves, already a third of their way to the six wins they registered against Atlanta in 2018. New York will look to continue their winning ways as they aim for their fourth straight victory tonight. First pitch for the contest is scheduled for 7:20 p.m. at SunTrust Park.
It hasn’t been a great start for the defending National League East champions, who won 90 games to take the division crown. Atlanta’s offseason started with a big splash, signing Josh Donaldson to a one year deal worth $23 million, but they didn’t do much else to upgrade their roster. The Braves have plenty of pitching in the pipeline, but how soon it translates to big league success could impact their ability to defend the NL East crown.
Tonight’s pitching matchup features a battle of lefties. The Mets will send out veteran Jason Vargas (1-0, 9.00 ERA), who got shelled in an inning of work in relief on Tuesday, giving up four runs in the ninth against the Minnesota Twins. Vargas’ last start came back on April 2nd, when he gave up two runs in five innings to pick up a win against the Miami Marlins. The Braves will counter with youngster Sean Newcomb (0-0, 1.64 ERA). Newcomb was excellent in his last outing, giving up two runs in seven innings against the Marlins on Sunday, but didn’t receive a decision in a game the Braves went on to win 4-3.
New York Mets Lineup:
<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” data-lang=”en”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>Looking to stay 🔥. <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/LGM?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#LGM</a> <a href=”https://t.co/mej8oVvvr4″>pic.twitter.com/mej8oVvvr4</a></p>— New York Mets (@Mets) <a href=”https://twitter.com/Mets/status/1117161943205281793?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>April 13, 2019</a></blockquote> https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js
- After going just 3-6 at SunTrust Park in 2018, the Mets already have two wins there this season.
- Vargas is 2-2 with a 4.01 ERA in six career appearances, including five starts, against Atlanta.
- Newcomb is 2-2 with a 1.82 ERA in six starts against the Mets, all of which have come in the past two years.
- After sitting out last night, Pete Alonso is back in the Mets’ lineup. Alonso will bat second and start at first base.
- The Mets will give Robinson Cano his first day off of the season, starting Jeff McNeil at second base. McNeil will bat leadoff.
- Wilson Ramos and Brandon Nimmo will also get a night off. Keon Broxton and Juan Lagares will both start in the outfield while Travis d’Arnaud catches.
- Ronald Acuna is 5 for 8 with a triple and a homer in his career against Vargas.
- Amed Rosario is 3 for 7 with a pair of doubles and an RBI against Newcomb.
- The Mets have scored at least six runs in six consecutive games. If they can do that again tonight, they will set a franchise record.