Colorado Rockies: Previewing the New York Mets Series
After the Colorado Rockies finished up their three-game series in Baltimore with a win, they prepared to square off against arguably the best pitching staff in Major League Baseball. Here are a few things to watch for as a big four-game series kicks off against the New York Mets in Queens.
1. Both teams will see their starting pitching go six-plus innings. We can only hope Colorado hits New York pitching early and hard. However, anytime you play the Mets, you realize you will more than likely be struggling through the first six innings. All five Rockies starting pitchers have shown lately that they can pitch deeper into games than we have seen in years past. Each starter pitched six-plus innings, with the exception of Tyler Chatwood, in his last start and all have given the Rockies a chance to win.
I am upset that Jon Gray will not be able to participate in this series as he finished off the Baltimore trip. However, Colorado’s starting pitchers should hopefully keep the Rockies in the game.
2. The Rockies will see former shortstop Jose Reyes for the first time since he signed back with the Mets. I think all Rockies fans were excited to see the Rockies face off against the veteran shortstop who left Colorado on not-so-great terms … but we may not get the chance. Reyes suffered an intercostal strain in the first game of a doubleheader on Tuesday. Reports say he may be able to return on Friday. However, if Reyes is not healthy, the Rockies will most likely see Wilmer Flores take the third base role.
After an offseason of controversy, Reyes was put on administrative leave until his trial began, and from there he was suspended until the end of May (51 total games). The Rockies shipped him to the minors and eventually designated him for assignment and was then picked up by the Mets. I think all Rockies fans would have loved the opportunity to see him play and hopefully fail multiple times in this four-game series. Only time will tell if Reyes will be healthy enough to at least get a pinch hit at bat in this four-game set.
3. The Mets look to avenge their series sweep they suffered earlier in the season at the hands of the Rockies. When the Mets were in town back in May, they started Harvey, Verrett and deGrom. This will be a completely different look this time around as the Mets are scheduled to start deGrom, Matz, Colon and Syndergaard. The Rockies were able to hit Harvey hard as he was in the midst of his 2016 decline, and did the same to Verrett, but most of their struggles in that series came against deGrom. Not only do we get deGrom again, we face Colon and Matz with nearly identical ERAs (3.35 and 3.36) and Syndergaard who can be nearly unhittable (9-5, 2.45 ERA, 1.13 WHIP).
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This is a much tougher pitching group, so the Rockies will need to bring their strong offensive game that most analysts say they often leave at Coors Field. This would be a good opportunity to light up a highly touted staff and take a series on the road to bump the Rockies closer to a wild card spot. Most have written the Rockies off for the 2016 season. However, a series win or even better a sweep, could be just the kick Colorado needs to stay in the midst of any playoff runs.
4. The trade deadline may affect the conclusion of this series. As we approach the trade deadline, there will be lots of distractions and rumors going on in the clubhouse. This is the time of year where all speculation will either fade away or come to life.
For the Rockies, many of the rumors surround shopping one of the starting outfielders. As the Rockies called up top prospect David Dahl, that did nothing but expand rumors of shopping an outfielder. Expect to see some distractions this weekend with the deadline looming, and hopefully the Rockies can benefit from whatever the front office has up their sleeve.
My hope though is that this will not distract from the series at hand and the players, along with Walt Weiss, can stay focused on taking at least three games in New York.
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We’ve officially reached the dog days of summer for the baseball season, and this is a perfect opportunity to continue to win series after series and creep up in the standings. No lead is safe in baseball, and the Colorado Rockies can continue to make their margin in the standings smaller and smaller. A series win in New York is just what the doctor ordered to continue momentum into an upcoming eight-game homestand.