In addition to being an improved week for the offense, the Mets’ pitching staff also had a pretty excellent week. Luckily for the Mets, all of the worst pitching performances for the week were lumped together in Wednesday’s blowout loss to the Blue Jays.
Zack Wheeler started Wednesday’s game and allowed six runs on seven hits, including two home runs in four innings of work. He struck out seven and took the loss. This was a frustrating let down after his bounce back start last week. Wheeler’s results remain inconsistent so far this season.
Steven Matz also continues to have an up and down year and took a step back this week. He, too, was unable to pitch past the fourth inning in his start on Saturday, surrendering four runs and six hits on Saturday night. The bullpen held firm, however, and the Mets were able to secure the walkoff victory to let Matz off the hook. He has averaged just 4 2⁄3 innings in his starts this year.
Seth Lugo did the heavy lifting in relief of Matz, pitching two scoreless innings and allowing just one hit, striking out two. Overall, he has been fantastic this week. He also pitched three scoreless innings in relief of Noah Syndergaard in Tuesday’s rout of the Blue Jays. He accumulated 0.2 fWAR for his long relief efforts this week and his ERA has now dipped under 2 for the season and his WHIP has fallen below 1.
The Mets won both games Noah Syndergaard pitched this week and he threw well in both of them, but only managed to go five innings in his aforementioned start against the Blue Jays on Tuesday. He allowed two runs on five hits and struck out seven in to earn the win. The brevity of his outing may have been due to the fact that between the days off and the rain postponement, he had more time off between starts than he is accustomed to. He looked sharper in yesterday’s game, striking out seven in seven innings en route to his fourth win of the season. Syndergaard is still struggling to put hitters away this season, running high pitch counts more often than he would probably like, but he is getting the job done and keeping the Mets in games that he pitches.
Also due to the days off, the Mets had the luxury of being able to skip Jason Vargas’ start this week, allowing him to throw a simulated game in an attempt to work out his struggles. We will see if this effort yielded any results, as he is slated to pitch tonight’s game.
Jacob deGrom remains unquestionably the ace of the staff, putting all lingering concerns about his elbow to rest with a sparkling effort in Friday night’s series opener against the Diamondbacks. He struck out a career-high thirteen batters in the outing. He, too, now has four victories on the year.
Robert Gsellman and Jeurys Familia both helped secure Friday night’s victory for the Mets by each pitching a scoreless inning of relief behind deGrom. Familia struck out the side to earn the save. Familia also earned the win on Saturday night by pitching a scoreless top of the ninth before the Mets walked it off in the bottom of the ninth. With Familia having pitched two days in a row, Robert Gsellman finished off yesterday’s game with 1 2⁄3 innings of relief, earning his first save of the season. Gsellman was also just about the only pitcher to emerge unscathed in Wednesday’s game, pitching a scoreless inning in the blowout loss.
Jacob Rhame, fresh back from Triple-A Las Vegas also threw in Wednesday’s game, allowing just one hit in 1 1⁄3 innings of work. He also threw a scoreless inning the day before in the blowout win, starting off his latest tenure with the Mets on the right foot.
A.J. Ramos and Buddy Baumann—filling Jerry Blevins’ role while he was out on paternity leave—both got knocked around in the Blue Jays’ rout of the Mets on Wednesday, however. Baumann pitched two innings and gave up three runs on three hits, striking out three. He was optioned back to Triple-A when Blevins was activated from the paternity list. A.J. Ramos was even worse, allowing three runs himself in just 2⁄3 of an inning. He did, however, bounce back to throw a scoreless eighth inning in Saturday’s walk-off win.
Paul Sewald also helped the bullpen hold the fort in relief of Steven Matz on Saturday, pitching a 1-2-3 seventh and striking out two batters.
Jerry Blevins, returning from paternity leave, faced just one batter this week in yesterday’s win, striking out David Peralta to lead off the eighth inning before yielding to Gsellman.