The New York Mets and New York Yankees had to take a rain check and postpone the beginning of the Subway Series until today. The Mets and Yankees will play a double-header with an afternoon and night contest taking place at Yankee Stadium. This is only a two-game series, so this will be the only day of the Mets and Yankees for now. An entire day of New York baseball doesn’t sound too bad, though, for fans of the rivalry at least.
Masahiro Tanaka was going to get the nod for the Yankees yesterday, while James Paxton pitched today. Paxton will make his scheduled start on Tuesday night and Tanaka will get the early start. Jason Vargas was scheduled to pitch Monday and will get the late game against Paxton instead of going against Tanaka like the original plans. The Yankees will see Zack Wheeler in the early contest and Vargas at night.
With the Yankees sitting the day out on Monday, the Rays seized the opportunity to grab a slim lead in the AL West. The Rays are ahead in the division by a half a game, but have also played one more game than the Yankees. Tampa aren’t going away despite the popular opinion that they may fade back. Even when the Yankees get healthier with the return of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, the Rays aren’t going to go away if they maintain this consistent level of play.
The Yankees might be looking behind, or in this case ahead, to see that things are a lot closer than expected. Considering how well the Yankees have played this season, they’re entering today at 40-24, a lot of teams would have a comfortable lead in their division with a record like that. The Rays and Yankees will meet for three days at Yankee Stadium next week for an important series. James Paxton and the Yanks will focus on the Mets in the Subway Series today, though. Head below for our free Mets vs. Yankees pick.
N.Y. Mets vs. N.Y. Yankees Pick Game 2*:
Betting odds provided by bovada.lv
Like we went through yesterday, Jason Vargas has been a gem for the Mets this season. He’s been one of the most surprising players across Major League Baseball in 2019. With his career teetering on the point of irrelevancy, Vargas must have worked has tail off in the offseason to get back into form.
He looks like the same guy who helped the Royals win a World Series. Vargas acted like an x-factor then, and while he isn’t playing for much with the Mets, his team might be able to ship him out to a contender for prospects. If the Mets get something in return for him, then it works out well for both player and club.
It’s head turning to see that Vargas has been a better starting pitcher than deGrom and Syndergaard for the Mets. When you look at only his numbers as a starter, Vargas holds an ERA of 2.84 in nine starts. He was awful in relief against the Twins to skew his numbers up considerably. Take that appearance out and he’s been the best pitcher statistically for the Mets in 2019.
Crazy how things work for a guy who just posted an ERA of 5.77 a season ago. His matchup may be even more difficult than yesterday, though. Vargas draws Paxton on the other side, so it’s not going to be an easy night to earn his 3rd win of the season. Run support for Vargas hasn’t been a strong suit of the Mets. It hasn’t been as bad as deGrom last season, but the Mets have scored just 3 runs per game for him in his last six outings. However, that wasn’t the case in his most recent showing, as the Mets put up 7 runs in a shutout and complete game for Vargas against the Giants.
Paxton has been unflappable at home in Yankee Stadium. Some pitchers do not like the pressure of Yankee Stadium, cough Sonny Gray, and others embrace the situation and that has been the case for Paxton. He has been nearly perfect with an ERA of 0.34 and 0.71 WHIP at home. In 26.2 innings of work, Paxton has given up a total of only 3 runs in total. He hasn’t allowed more than a run in any of his starts at Yankee Stadium. The Mets are hitting .211 with 1 home run against Paxton in 57 at-bats. Vargas keeps this game reasonably close, but expect the Yankees to pull away against the Mets’ bullpen for a win by a couple of runs or more.