Thanks to some timely rainfall last night, the Mets get a much-needed do-over.
After an encouraging win against the Dodgers on Thursday night, the Mets dug themselves an early hole against the Diamondbacks on Friday night, with Bartolo Colon serving up a two-run, 2nd inning homer to Aaron Hill. Fortunately for the Mets, the rain became too much and the game was delayed in the middle of the fourth inning. Since less than five innings of baseball were played when the game was called, the Mets and Diamondbacks will start from scratch in Sunday’s doubleheader.
Today, the Mets will send Zack Wheeler to the mound to oppose Josh Collmenter and the Diamondbacks. Wheeler will look to bounce back from two consecutive subpar starts in which he gave up five runs in each game (though only 3 were earned in his last start against the Nationals). Outside of throwing six scoreless innings in Miami on May 7, Wheeler hasn’t looked sharp this month. Wheeler, who turns 24 next week, will certainly be given plenty of time to figure it out. A consensus top-20 prospect in baseball before last season, Wheeler certainly has the ability to be an effective big league pitcher. In my opinion, Wheeler’s biggest problem right now is his walk rate. In 20.1 innings this month, Wheeler has walked 15 batters. Outside of allowing base runners, walks limit the pitcher’s ability to go deep into games. Though he’s thrown over 100 pitches in two of his four starts this month, Wheeler is averaging just over five innings per start.
On an optimistic note, Wheeler threw 6.1 innings of effective baseball in Arizona on April 14, earning his first, and, thus far, only win of the year.
Opposing Zack Wheeler in that game in mid-April was, you guessed it, Josh Collmenter. In what was his first start of the year (after appearing as reliever in four games), Collmenter didn’t look particularly sharp. Only throwing four innings and 73 pitches, Collmenter gave up three runs to take his first loss of the season. In an obvious contrast to Wheeler, the 28 year-old Collmenter rarely walks hitters, allowing just 13 free passes in 47 innings so far this year.
If the rain can hold off today, the Mets will be in for a good game. Zack Wheeler will surely be looking to break his losing streak and earn his second win of the year as the Mets take on the Diamondbacks at Citi Field today.