Terry Collins is confident heading into Game 3, unsure of his lineup against Hendricks
The National League Championship Series shifts to Wrigley Field on Tuesday night in Chicago with the Mets leading the Cubs 2-0 in their best-of-seven series.
The Mets have Jacob deGrom facing Kyle Hendricks on Tuesday, and the Mets are glowing with confidence as they look to go up 3-0 in the NLCS.
“We have a lot of confidence,” manager Terry Collins said on Monday afternoon in Chicago. “Any night that he pitches, we’ve got a good chance to win. But, again, you still have to locate. You still got to make pitches. You just don’t walk out on the mound.”
Collins recognizes fatigue could be a factor for deGrom – he has thrown 204 innings between the regular season and postseason in 2015. But Collins believes adrenaline is what keeps deGrom’s and everyone’s energy level high at this point in the year.
“The intensity level and the adrenaline on this stage, you’re just not as tired as you think you are,” he said.
And it’s that adrenaline, Collins believes, which will keep his club from easing up on the Cubs even though they hold a 2-0 lead in the series.
“The minute you think they’re naive enough to think this is over, you’re making a big mistake,” Collins explained. They know exactly what they’re facing. We’ve come in here a lot of games and had very well-played games here at Wrigley Field and gotten beat. So we are certainly aware that we’ve got to continue to push forward. We’ve got to swing better here. This is a park that hitting’s huge. You’ve got to hit to win games here. So we’ve got to get ourselves going offensively and not worry about anything except winning tomorrow night.”
Outside of Curtis Granderson and Daniel Murphy, the Mets are hitting just .164 in the playoffs. Murphy and Granderson have driven in 15 of the Mets 30 runs in their seven playoff games to date.
As for his lineup in game three, Collins hinted he could sit Lucas Duda again, and instead have Murphy at first base with Kelly Johnson at second base.
But Duda is 2-for-4 with a home run in his career against Hendricks. Johnson is 1-for-2. However, Duda is just 2-for-21 with two walks and 13 strikeouts in the postseason. He is now 2-for-his-last-31 with three walks and 19 strikeouts in his last 11 games.
“I haven’t written the lineup yet,” Collins said. I haven’t even visited it. I haven’t looked. We just found out yesterday afternoon it was going to be Hendricks and I haven’t even looked at what the fit’s going to be.”