What to look for: Nationals vs. Mets, 7:10 PM

Citi Field 1 slice


The Mets will look to salvage a split of their doubleheader against the Nationals and even their series with the Nationals on Saturday night at Citi Field at 7:10 pm.


BaronHere is tonight’s starting lineup for New York:

Curtis Granderson – RF
Ruben Tejada – SS
Michael Conforto – LF
Michael Cuddyer – 1B
Kelly Johnson – 3B
Kirk Nieuwenhuis – CF
Kevin Plawecki – C
Dilson Herrera – 2B
Matt Harvey – RHP


Here is tonight’s pitching matchup:

Matt Harvey (13-7, 2.80 ERA) will start for the Mets.

Max Scherzer (13-12, 2.91 ERA) will start for the Nationals.


Mets vs NationalsHere’s what I’m looking for tonight from the Mets.

A pulse.

The Mets have had next to no pulse since Sunday. Indeed, these games matter little in the standings, and clearly the Mets aren’t prioritizing home field advantage as much as the manager has said they are.

It’s ok, it’s pretty obvious.

But that doesn’t excuse poor play, a lack of offense, and the miscues which are taking place these days.

The Mets could do themselves a favor by showing a little life in this game. They’ve got a very abbreviated lineup out there for game two and they’re facing a tough customer in Scherzer, but hopefully they can get to him a little bit and eek out a win for the first time in six days.

It’s the last #HarveyDay.

The last one for the regular year, at least. And Harvey was splendid last Saturday in his NL East clinching win over the Reds.

He struggled a little bit with the feel for his pitches early last Saturday but was otherwise solid for 6 2/3 innings. He looks to kick it in gear tonight against Washington as he prepares for what looks like a start next Monday against the Dodgers in game three of the Division Series.

He’s allowed only two runs on ten hits with a walk and 13 strikeouts in his last two starts, spanning 11 2/3 innings. He has that extra life back to his fastball and he looks close to be firing on all cylinders. Hopefully he can help inspire the Mets offense with a Harvey-like performance tonight.

Momentum.

Whatever happens with the home field advantage situation, it would be nice for the Mets to build a little momentum and energy into the playoffs with a series win against the Nationals. Outside of last week’s sweep of the Reds, the Mets have been quite flat for most of the last three weeks. They’ve lost ten of their last 17 games and haven’t done a whole lot of scoring in the process.

Fortunately, they clinched the division ahead of this malaise. But it’s important to play well regardless of what’s at stake, or not in this case.

 

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