Mets vs Giants Preview

Joe Clark

Wednesday night’s NL Wild Card team features the last two NL Pennant winners in the New York Mets and the San Francisco Giants. Either one of these teams has the firepower to make another World Series run, but they have to win tonight first. Both of these teams enter tonight after having subpar seasons for their standards, as both teams finished 85-77. The Giants were the best team in baseball at the All-Star break, but limped to 30-42 finish in the second half. Both teams’ strength lies in their pitching, as the Giants’ rotation features Madison Bumgarner (who will face off against Mets ace Noah Syndergaard tonight), Johnny Cueto, and Jeff Samardzija. The Mets rotation has been ravaged by injuries this year, losing Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, and Steven Matz for the season. In their place though, others have stepped up, as along with the aforementioned Syndergaard, the Mets have the ageless wonder Bartolo Colon and rookies Seth Lugo and Robert Gsellman in their still-formidable rotation.

During the season, the Mets edged the Giants 4-3 in the season series. Along with their solid solid rotation, the Mets have a decent lineup, although it’s certainly not without it’s holes. At 1B, the Mets start James Loney (87 OPS+) starts, and while he hasn’t been terrible this season, having a consistent offensive contributor at 1st would be nice. The Mets also have a whole in RF, where trade deadline acquisition Jay Bruce (82 OPS+) hasn’t worked out, although he got hot at the end of the season. Beyond that though, the Mets have a good offensive led yet again by Yoenis Cespedes. If they can figure out Bumgarner and score 3+ runs, look for the Mets to win tonight.

Led by the best offensive catcher in baseball in Buster Posey, the Giants offense, while solid, isn’t elite, although they don’t need to be with their rotation. Posey is joined by 1B Brandon Belt (132 OPS+) and Brandon Crawford (106 OPS+) as the key contributors in the Giants lineup. Going up against Syndergaard will be a tough task, so look for the Giants offense, much like the Mets, to struggle.

In what is sure to be another pitcher’s duel, look for the Giants to win this one 3-1. Syndergaard will have a quicker hook than Bumgarner, and while the Mets have a decent bullpen, that extra inning or two could be a huge factor in tonight’s game. Regardless, this one could end up being an instant classic.