The Mets (61-75) arrive in town Monday as a team that is tough to figure out. Yes, they’re 50-74 since starting the season 11-1 and have mostly been one of the bottom 10 teams in baseball. But more recently, have only lost two of the last 15 series they’ve played since July 9, either splitting or winning 13 of them.
That still amounts to a 26-24 record over that stretch and a team like the Dodgers should be able to handle business. Dating back to 2012, the Dodgers have won 30 of the last 40 games from the Mets in the regular season.
But baseball is weird and a team like the Mets can’t be taken for granted.
Year to Date
|Home/Road W-L||38-34 (Home)||33-35 (Road)|
|Run Differential||128 (5th)||-50 (20th)|
|Runs per game||4.70 (14th)||4.13 (18th)|
|OPS+||104 (5th)||96 (18th)|
|wRC+||106 (5th)||92 (21th)|
|ERA||3.43 (2nd)||4.21 (18th)|
Going 15-10 over their last 25 games, the Mets are averaging over five runs per game on offense. But when you look closer, 40 of the 131 runs were scored on two consecutive nights that saw them blowout the Orioles 16-5, and the Phillies 24-4.
When last these clubs met, the Dodgers were in the middle of a 31-13 stretch to pull themselves back into the NL West race. Los Angeles clubbed 11 homers over the three-game series at Citi Field, sweeping New York. Now the Dodgers are surging, winning eight of their last nine games to take the lead in the NL West.
The Dodgers have only nine games remaining in the regular season at home. They’re right in the thick of the playoff race and it’s going to be a fun finish to the season. Make sure you’re part of the fun with some tickets from our friends at StubHub.
The toughest test of the series comes Monday night with the Mets’ ace on the mound in Jacob deGrom. Despite a league-best 1.68 ERA, the Mets are 11-16 in deGrom’s 27 starts.
Monday, 5:10 p.m. PT (SportsNet LA, MLB Network*)
By Game Score, the third worst start of deGrom’s fantastic season came against the Dodgers back on June 23. The right-hander allowed three runs on five hits, walking three in six innings. The Dodgers won that game by the score of 8-3, highlighted by a pinch-hit grand slam by Matt Kemp in the eighth.
Since the start of July, the 30-year-old deGrom has a 1.45 ERA, allowing 16 runs (12 earned) in 74 1⁄3 innings over 10 starts. The Mets have only won five of those games.
Alex Wood will get the ball for the Dodgers coming off one of his best starts of the year, going seven scoreless against the Rangers last Wednesday. The 27-year-old is 7-1 with a 2.43 ERA over his last 12 starts.
Tuesday, 7:10 p.m. PT (SportsNet LA, KTLA)
A pair of lefties square off Tuesday as Jason Vargas and Rich Hill get the nod. Vargas has had a rough year, allowing 51 runs in 70 innings. However, over the last four starts, the 35-year-old is 3-0 with a 1.99 ERA, allowing just five runs in 22 2⁄3 innings.
Despite the three-run homer on Thursday against Arizona, Hill has been stingy at home. The 38-year-old has allowed just eight runs (seven earned) over his last five starts at Dodger Stadium, striking out 34 and walking just three in 28 2⁄3 innings.
Wednesday, 4:35 p.m. PT (SportsNet LA, MLB Network*)
The Dodgers get their second look at Zack Wheeler Wednesday. The right-hander went seven innings in a 5-2 loss on June 22 during the Dodgers sweep. Cody Bellinger smashed a grand slam in the sixth inning of that game.
Wheeler has gone at least seven innings in nine of his last 13 starts that goes back to that day against Los Angeles. In the 12 starts since, the 28-year-old has been doing his best deGrom impression, going 7-1 with a 1.83 ERA.
Hyun-jin Ryu makes his fifth stat back since returning from the disabled list. In the previous four, Ryu has allowed seven runs (six earned), while striking out 23 and walking only two. The lefty is 4-1 with a 2.24 ERA overall this season.
*= out-of-market only