The Mets had the day off yesterday, but they spent the holiday weekend hosting the Mariners, who began the series in first place in the American League West. Despite the massive gap between their playoff prospects, though, the Mets were able to beat the Mariners in two of the three games.
Kodai Senga was brilliant in the series opener, a low-scoring game that the Mets won. In the second game of the series, the Mets put up a real fight but ultimately lost a high-scoring game by one run. And on Sunday, Pete Alonso hit his 40th and 41st home runs in the series finale, leading the way in the team’s victory.
Between the results of those games and the ones that their rivals played, the Mariners’ slim lead in the AL West has turned into a first-place tie with the Astros—with the Rangers just one game back of both of those teams.
The Mets’ place in their division is another story entirely, as the team is virtually guaranteed to finish either in fourth or last place in the National League East. The other team that will occupy one of those two spots is, of course, the Nationals.
It’s relatively rare for division rivals to play a two-game series, but the schedule makers have the Mets and Nationals doing just that this week. The series opener takes places tonight, and the series finale takes place tomorrow night. And then the Mets have another off day on Thursday before heading to Minnesota for three games against the first-place Twins.
If the Mets’ draft pick next summer is your top priority, you’d probably not mind if the team lose both of these games to the Nationals. But the players who are on the field are clearly still trying their best to win. Francisco Lindor and Pete Alonso have both looked like the cornerstone players that they are. Ronny Mauricio got off to a fantastic start in his first series in the big leagues, which makes these games a bit more exciting than they otherwise would have been for this stretch.
Tuesday, September 5: José Quintana vs. Patrick Corbin, 7:05 PM on SNY
Quintana (2023): 47.0 IP, 35 K, 20 BB, 1 HR, 3.26 ERA, 3.32 FIP, 1.340 WHIP, 1.3 bWAR
It’s hard not to think of what the Mets’ season might have looked like if Quintana hadn’t needed surgery in the spring that kept him out for the first half of the season. Since returning, though, he’s been great. While he hasn’t yet matched the number of innings that Justin Verlander threw for the Mets this year, Quintana’s 3.26 ERA in eight starts is just a little bit worse than the 3.15 ERA that Verlander posted in sixteen starts. In a season that saw so much go wrong for the Mets, Quintana’s performance has gone right, and he looks like a very good piece of the team’s 2024 rotation.
Corbin (2023): 154.1 IP, 109 K, 48 BB, 27 HR, 4.90 ERA, 5.11 FIP, 1.497 WHIP, 0.4 bWAR
For the past few years now, Corbin has been a below-average major league starting pitcher. He had a 5.74 ERA at the end of April this year, but since the beginning of May, he’s put up a 4.68 ERA. Among the 52 qualified starting pitchers in baseball this year, he ranks 45th in ERA. He’s faced the Mets twice this this year, and while he seemed to have their number at times in the past, he has a 4.63 ERA in those two games.
Wednesday, September 6: TBD vs. Joan Adon, 7:05 PM on SNY
The Mets haven’t announced their starter for the second game of the series yet, but the team does have Kodai Senga slated to pitch the series opener in Minnesota on Friday. With Carlos Carrasco having struggled so much that he was moved to the bullpen instead of making his last turn in the rotation, this could be a bullpen game, or maybe the Mets will call up someone from Syracuse or give Carrasco a start.
Adon (2023): 29.0 IP, 23 K, 7 BB, 5 HR, 5.90 ERA, 4.95 FIP, 1.138 WHIP, -0.1 bWAR
The 25-year-old Adon threw a handful of innings for the Nationals in 2021, but he racked up most of his major league experience in fourteen starts for them in 2022—albeit with a 7.10 ERA. This year, he’s spent the majority of the season in Triple-A, but he’s struggled—slightly less than he did last year, at least—in his time on the major league roster.
Prediction: The Mets and Nationals split the series.
How will the Mets fare in their two-game series against the Nationals?
This poll is closed
The Mets pull off a two-game sweep.
Banana split: The Mets and Nationals each win once.
The Nationals sweep the Mets into last place.