The Mets might not be contenders come July, but we can at least hold off on the fire sale talk for a few days. With a 2-1 win over the Yankees last night, the Mets are back at the .500 mark (22-22) for the first time since April 9.
R.A. Dickey, who entered the night with a 5.08 ERA, tossed six innings of one-run ball for his first win since his first start of the season. Justin Turner continued his hot hitting by going 3-for-4 with an RBI double while Daniel Murphy put the Mets ahead with a solo shot in the sixth inning. Francisco Rodriguez pitched for the third straight day and converted his 15th consecutive save.
The Mets were 5-13 as recently as April 20, but have won 17 out of their last 26 games. Yes, they have had some surprising contributions from the likes of the Jason Pridie and the aforementioned Justin Turner, but the big key has been the pitching staff. They have an impressive 2.89 ERA since April 20.
Sure, many still wonder when Sandy Alderson will take a hammer to the roster or how the club will find a way to avoid K-Rod’s vesting option, but the team’s recent surge should put a stop to all that. At least for a little while. It’s depressing, anyway. It’s time to enjoy the season for what it is.
Diamondbacks’ left-hander Anthony Banda is set to make his big league debut on Saturday, per a team announcement. The Diamondbacks recalled the southpaw from Triple-A Reno prior to the game after Taijuan Walker was placed on paternity leave.
It’s been a rough season for the club’s top prospect, who enters Saturday’s contest with a 5.08 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.3 SO/9 over his first 101 innings in Triple-A this season. The 23-year-old lefty carries a 7-5 record through his first 18 starts and is coming off of his worst outing of the year, during which he issued 15 hits, seven runs and just one strikeout against the Angels-affiliated Salt Lake Bees.
Facing Banda is Nationals’ right-hander Tanner Roark, who owns a 4.98 ERA, 3.3 BB/9 and 7.2 SO/9 through 106 2/3 innings in 2017. Roark pitched a respectable six innings in his last start, scattering four hits, three runs and five strikeouts en route to his seventh win of the season. He also has the added benefit of pitching behind one of the league’s most potent offenses, and boasts a hefty run support average of 5.68 runs per game.
The D-backs currently lead the Nationals, 1-0, and will face off for their second game at 8:10 ET on Saturday night.
ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the Dodgers are “exploring a possible deal” for Mets’ right-hander Addison Reed. It’s not the first time the righty has incurred interest from a top contender. The Brewers, Yankees and Red Sox are all supposedly in on Reed, and Newsday’s Marc Carig adds that up to half a dozen teams have already made inquiries prior to the trade deadline.
Reed, 28, is currently in his third campaign with the Mets. He’s coming off of a career-best performance in 2016, during which he looked nearly unhittable with a 1.97 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.5 SO/9 through 77 2/3 innings. His numbers have regressed a little in 2017, but he’s still working with 16 saves and a solid 2.35 ERA, 1.2 BB/9 and 9.2 SO/9 through his first 46 innings.
While there’s no doubt Reed would help stabilize any bullpen he’s dealt to, the Dodgers may have less of a prominent position to offer the right-hander. Kenley Jansen has already locked down the closing role in Los Angeles, which would likely see Reed in some kind of set-up role as he finishes his last season before hitting free agency.