The Minnesota Twins return home after a successful weekend in Ohio against the Indians. They failed to get the sweep, but were still winners in two out of three games. That was good enough to advance to 58-34 and a 6.5-game lead in the AL Central. The Indians were unable to close the gap any, but were fortunate to avoid a sweep. Minnesota had the day off on Monday, while the Indians struggled with the Tigers at home.
The Mets were off yesterday as well following winning a series in Miami against the Marlins. They won two of three with back-to-back wins from Syndergaard and deGrom. Zach Wheeler was expected to get the start here, but is heading to the IL with shoulder fatigue. Uh oh.
That may not look like much, though to the Mets it’s a terrible scenario that is happening at the wrong time. Wheeler is projected to be the most likely pitcher to get traded in the rotation. He’s been in trade talks for a while now. However, with the trade deadline approaching, they must send him to the IL, and in the process, his value is going to sink.
It’s likely that a few curse words were flown around in the front office. There are other trade pieces in the Mets’ rotation. They will entertain offers for Syndergaard and Jason Vargas, along with Jacob deGrom, but they’re not going to give deGrom up easy. I will say that Syndergaard is probably going to stay as well, unless they get a can’t pass up offer.
Steven Matz is in the same ballpark in this regard. In conclusion, no one is safe from getting traded in the Mets’ rotation. Matz is scheduled to get the start against the Twins this evening. The lefty is making his first start since June 29th. He was moved to the bullpen for a couple of appearances after struggling to get outs in the rotation. Michael Pineda, who has found his career again in 2019, will counter for the Twins. Head below for our free Mets vs. Twins pick.
N.Y. Mets vs. Minnesota Twins Pick:
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The Twins took a chance on Michael Pineda to stay healthy and so far so good. He’s been able to reverse the trend of nothing but injuries in his career in 2019. Pineda has made 17 starts this season, which ties last season. The only year he has made at least 30 starts was in 2016 with the Yankees. He didn’t appear in a game in 2012 and 2013 because of shoulder surgery, and then he needed Tommy John surgery after 17 starts in 2017 to repair his elbow.
2018 was another missed year for Pineda while he worked his way back to form. With all of that in mind, Pineda is having a pretty nice season. He enters Tuesday with an ERA of 4.56 and 1.18 WHIP. It doesn’t seem like much, but being able to pitch is a win in itself. Also, Pineda has been at his best recently.
We’ve been noticing him steadily improving since mid-June. In fact, it’s been the best we’ve seen Pineda in a long time. He has allowed just 1-run in four of his last four outings. Along with just 1-run, he’s yielded an average of only 4 hits per game. Pineda has been more effective at home, with an ERA of 4.28 and 1.10 WHIP. Matz was moved to the bullpen after posting a 11.12 ERA and 2.29 WHIP in his previous three starts.
He has a very tough matchup on the road against a team who are the best in the business at hitting left-handed pitching. Maybe an elite lefty can give them problems, but Matz is not elite. The Twins are hitting .293 on the season against left-handed pitching. Matz has been awful on the road, with a 7.07 ERA and 1.74 WHIP. This is not the easiest matchup to ease Matz back into the starting rotation; however, with Wheeler on the IL they have to rely on Matz as a starter again. The Twins look like the play here.