6/9/23 Game Preview: New York Mets at Pittsburgh Pirates

Jeff McNeil, New York Mets

Things have managed to go from bad to worse for the New York Mets (30-33) rather quickly. A disaster series in Atlanta has led to the Mets’ first six-game losing streak since August of 2019 and put them 8.5 games back of the Braves in the National League East. Manager Buck Showalter accentuated the positives from the Mets’ offense and resilience last night, traits they hope will help snap the skid as they continue their road trip tonight against the Pittsburgh Pirates (32-29). First pitch for the opener of this weekend series is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at PNC Park.

2022 was another rebuilding season for the Pirates, who went 62-100 to finish in a last-place tie in the National League Central, trailing the first-place St. Louis Cardinals by 31 games. Pittsburgh opted to add some seasoned veterans to their roster to help guide the younger players in the offseason, bringing in established players like Rich Hill, Carlos Santana and longtime Pirate Andrew McCutchen in a homecoming of sorts. The franchise also got some much-needed clarity on a key piece of its future by agreeing to a long-term extension with outfielder Bryan Reynolds, avoiding yet another trade of an established player on the rise. The early returns were great for Pittsburgh, which surged to the top of the division with a red-hot April before falling back to the pack in May. The Pirates are warming up again, however, which is not good news for a Mets’ team that is struggling at the moment.

Right-hander Tylor Megill (5-3, 4.40 ERA) is set to take the mound for the Mets tonight. Megill pitched well in his last start, allowing one run in 5.1 innings against the Toronto Blue Jays last Saturday, but was stuck with a no-decision when the Mets lost the game 2-1 after his departure. The Pirates will counter with the aforementioned Hill (5-5, 4.41 ERA). The one-time Met picked up his fifth win of the season on Sunday by limiting the St. Louis Cardinals to one run in 6.2 innings of work.

Local Coverage:

Television: SNY

Radio: WCBS

New York Mets Lineup:

Pre-Game Notes:

    The Mets went 6-1 against the Pirates last season and won two out of three during their last trip to PNC Park in September.

    Megill has a 0.93 ERA in two career starts against the Pirates but has yet to be a factor in the decision.

    Hill is 2-2 with a 6.69 ERA in nine career appearances, including seven starts, against the Mets but hasn’t faced them since he was a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2019.

    The Mets have officially placed 1B Pete Alonso on the 10-day injured list with a bone bruise and sprained left wrist that is expected to sideline him for 3-4 weeks. IF Luis Guillorme has been recalled from AAA Syracuse to take Alonso’s place on the active roster.

    The Mets have recalled LHP Zack Muckenhirn from AAA Syracuse to provide a fresh arm for their bullpen. RHP Stephen Nogosek was designated for assignment to make room for Muckenhirn on the active roster.

    C Tomas Nido has cleared waivers and was outrighted to AAA Syracuse.

    Mark Canha is back in the Mets’ starting lineup after sitting out last night. He will start at first base and bat seventh.

    Daniel Vogelbach will sit with the lefty Hill on the mound. Mark Vientos will serve as the designated hitter and bat ninth.

    Brett Baty will sit against the lefty Hill. Eduardo Escobar will start at third base and bat eighth.

    Ke’Bryan Hayes is 3 for 5 (.600) in a small sample size against Megill.

    Starling Marte is 3 for 11 (.273) with a double and 3 RBI in his career against Hill.

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