After hanging around the NL playoff
picture all season long, the Mets might finally be falling out. After a rough start to the season, the D'backs have played their way into the picture. These two teams, headed in opposite directions, begin a 4 game series tonight.
Setting the Scene
New York just got swept three games at home by Washington,
scoring a total of six runs, and has now lost six in a row and 12 of its last
13. Not exactly the right way to go into an 11-game road trip.
So the Mets have dropped to four games under .500 at 47-51,
and are now seven games out in the battle for that second NL Wild-Card
Arizona, meanwhile, just took two of three games from
Colorado, missing out on the sweep by losing 4-2 Wednesday. So the D'Backs are
5-1 on their current homestand, and at 49-49 overall sit in third place in the
NL West, six games back of first-place San Francisco. Arizona also trails
Atlanta by five games games for that second NL Wild-Card berth.
Lefty Wade Miley (11-5, 3.02) gets the start for Arizona in
Thursday's series opener while 23-year-old Matt Harvey will make his ML debut
for New York.
Miley has been great almost all season, although he did go
through a recent rough stretch of three starts in which he gave up 15 runs. But, in his most recent outing, he held Houston to one run on four hits through seven
For the season, Miley has nine quality starts out of 16
tries, and the D'Backs are 11-5 in games he's started.
Miley has started once this season vs. the Mets, back in
early May, when he gave up four ER on seven hits through six innings of a 5-4
On the other side of this arms duel, Harvey, the seventh
overall pick in the 2010 draft, is getting the call because three-fifths of New
York's opening day starting rotation is on the DL. But, they might have a good
one in Harvey, who posted a 7-5 record and a 3.68 ERA at triple-A Buffalo this
year. Through 110 innings for the Bisons, he gave up 97 hits, walked 48 and
struck out 112.
The reports on Harvey indicate that at 6-4 he can get to the
upper 90s with his fastball. Last year in A and AA ball he whiffed 156 in 136
Odds and Trends
As of Thursday morning most MLB odds makers were listing
the D'Backs at right around -170 for Thursday night's game, with an
OVER/UNDER of nine.
Early betting action has seen about 65 percent of play come
in on Arizona, and 60 percent of play on the total is coming in on the UNDER.
The Mets are 57-37 on the OVER/UNDER this season, thanks
in large part to their bullpen and its five-plus ERA.
New York is also 10 games under .500 this year, 13-23, vs.
left-handed starting pitchers.
Free MLB Pick
The Mets are fading
badly, and desperate for some help in the starting rotation. Arizona,
meanwhile, is still harboring hopes of getting into the thicker part of the NL
Wild-Card race. So, we'll go with Miley and the D'Backs for Thursday's pick.