Suddenly, the Mets are struggling at home…
Entering August, the Mets had the second best home record in all of baseball–just a shade behind the Cardinals–as they were 36-18 at Citi Field. On the other side of the coin, this team also owned the 5th worst road record.
Since then, the script has flipped for this club.
After being 17-32 on the road on August 1st, the Mets are 20-5 since, evening their overall away record to 37-37 on the season. At home, however, the team is just 10-8 in that same time span.
While 10-8 isn’t terrible, this team went from being dominant in their own ballpark to struggling of late. They’ve lost three of their last four series at home–with the one series victory coming against the Phillies–after dropping the rubber game of their series with the Marlins on Wednesday night.
While their slugging trade deadline acquisition Yoenis Cespedes is hitting just .217 with 20 strikeouts in 18 games at Citi Field this season, their problem has hardly been on the offensive end.
In their last 18 home games, the Mets are averaging 6.11 runs per game, even after being shutout on Wednesday night for the first time since July 23rd.
The concern here is how the Mets pitching staff has performed of late. Since August 21st, Mets pitchers have a 5.49 ERA at Citi Field, spanning the course of 169 innings.
It’s really been a collective effort by this pitching staff, and there aren’t really any particular culprits. Jacob deGrom has hit some bumps over the past month, as have Matt Harvey and Jon Niese, but they’ve each had solid starts at home of late in addition to their poor ones.
The real issue here has been the long ball. In 72 home games this season, the Mets pitching staff has allowed 69 total home runs, but in their last 18 games at Citi Field, they’ve allowed 20–nearly 30 percent of the homers they’ve given up in 2015 at home. Quite obviously, if the Mets want to continue their success, they cannot allow home runs at such a prolific rate as they have in the past month and a half in their own ballpark.
The pitching as a whole has really struggled of late, as the Mets team ERA has gone up from 3.18 to 3.42 in the past 29 days.
Come playoff time, when this Mets team will be facing the likes of Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw in a five-game series, they’re going to have to win with what has gotten them here and what this team was been built on–their pitching. Especially in their own ballpark.