BOSTON – The Red Sox swept last-placed Orioles at the weekend and are now facing a slightly more difficult challenge with the Mets for two games in town. Here is a series preview:
New York Mets (73-77) vs. Boston Red Sox (86-65) Fenway Park Boston, MA
SERIES SCHEDULE (and TV information):
Tue September 21, 7:10 p.m. ET – NESN
Marry. Sept. 22, 7:10 p.m. ET – NESN / ESPN
HOW TO SEE:
Tue September 21, 7:10 p.m. ET – NESN (Channel Finders: Comcast Xfinity, Verizon Fios, Spectrum / Charter, Optimum / Altice, DIRECTV, Dish, AT&T U Verse, fuboTV and Sling) Live Stream: Watch NESN Live , fuboTV, MLB.tv (out of print)
Marry. September 22, 7:10 p.m. ET – NESN / ESPN (Channel Finder: Comcast Xfinity, Verizon Fios, Spectrum / Charter, Optimum / Altice, DIRECTV, Dish, AT&T U Verse, fuboTV and Sling) Live Stream: Watch NESN Live, fuboTV, MLB.tv (out of print), ESPN +
KNOW YOUR OPPONENT:
The Mets will almost certainly miss the postseason as they are six games behind the Braves in NL East and 7½ games behind the Cardinals for second place with wild cards. New York was in competition throughout the first half but struggled for the past few months, going from 10 to 19 in August and 8 to 10 in September to date.
Offensively, the Mets are below average, ranking on average 21st (.239), 23rd in baseball in OPS (.706) and 24th in Homers (165). Their pitching team was strong, ranking eighth in baseball in the ERA (3.84), 11th on average (0.236) and 13th in strikeouts (1,351).
New York was aggressive on the trading deadline, buying left-handed Rich Hill from the Rays and infielder Javier Báez from the Cubs. Hill (3.88 ERA in 53 ⅓ innings) was strong while Báez (.305 average, .946 OPS) got a thumbs up for his contributions.
The Mets pitching staff has been grappling with injury issues throughout the season as Noah Syndergaard (Tommy John surgery) has not pitched at all and Jacob deGrom (subarrow) has not pitched since July 7th.
Tuesday, 7:10 p.m. ET – RHP Marcus Stroman (9-12, 2.88 ERA) vs. LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (11-8, 5.00 ERA)
Wednesday, 7:10 p.m. ET – RHP Taijuan Walker (7-10, 4.27 ERA) vs. LHP Chris Sale (4-0, 2.40 ERA)
THREE SOX TO SEE:
Sale will present the series finale on Wednesday, making its seventh start since returning from Tommy John’s surgery. In his first six appearances, Sale is 4-0 with 2.40 ERA (30.0 IP, 8 ER, 6 BB, 31 SO).
Houck was relocated to the Bullpen late last week and is now tasked with a more prominent role as Garrett Whitlock (chest strain) is put on the injured list. Houck has made three relief bets this season, throwing 6⅔ scoreless innings in that role while recording eight strikeouts.
Arroyo, who has been on the COVID-19 injured list since August 27, could be activated ahead of Tuesday’s game. When he comes back it will be interesting to see how the Red Sox split playing time at the second base between Arroyo and José Iglesias, who is ineligible for the postseason but has had an ERA since joining the Sox in early September .387 of 1.022.
- The Sox won a two-game series against the Mets at Citi Field in April. 21 of the last 27 matches between the clubs were decided by 1 or 2 runs … The visiting team has won 11 of the last 15 matches between the clubs, including each of the last 6
- The Red Sox have won their last 5 games and are 11-6 in September … As of 08/20 they are 17-11 in games and 6-2-1 in series.
- The Sox’s current winning streak is the longest since winning 8 consecutive games on June 25th. until 07.02.
- The Red Sox’s 0.618 home win rate ranks 4th in the AL and 7th in the majors … They started the season 10-11 at home but have been since 37-18 (0.673).
- The Red Sox are 12-2 in their last 14 games, started by either Nathan Eovaldi or Chris Sale.
- Red Sox rescuers have allowed 3 ER in their last 25.0 IP and 4 ER in their last 33.1 IP (1.08 ERA) … In their last 9 games they have given up 5 ER in 39.2 IP (1.13 ERA).
- The Red Sox have used 56 players this season, the most tied in franchise history (also in 2012).
- As of August 8th, Bobby Dalbec has 12 HR and 36 RBI in 33 games … During this time he leads the majors (min. 100 PA) in SLG (.804), OPS (1,228) and wRC + (218). when hitting .333 with a .424 OBP.
- The Red Sox are 9th in the MLB with 201 HR … They have homered in 24 of their last 26 games; During this time (from August 23rd) they took 4th place in the MLB with 44 HR.
On Tuesday, the Red Sox have 11 games left, five at home and six away. How to end your season:
Thursday, September 23rd – REST DAY
Fri. September 24th – Sun. September 26th – against Yankees (3)
Mon-Fri September 27th – REST DAY
Tuesday September 28th – Thursday September 30th – @ Orioles (3)
Fri. Oct. 1 – Sun. Oct. 3 – @ Nationals (3)
AL Wild Card Rating: Boston Red Sox win half game against Blue Jays, Athletics on Monday; Yankees now within 2 games of the win
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