After winning two out of four games against the St. Louis Cardinals, the New York Mets will begin a three-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday night. After getting swept by the Chicago Cubs last week, the Mets have won four out of their last six games.
Lucas Duda has been the driving force behind the Mets recent success. The first baseman is batting .372 in his last 12 games.
The highly touted phantom Noah Syndergaard will start game one of the series for the Mets. The 22-year-old is looking to remain in the Mets rotation.
Syndergaard was called up from Triple-A Las Vegas earlier this month after Dillon Gee went on the 15-day DL with a groin injury. In two starts this season, Syndergaard is 1-1 with a 3.18 ERA.
With Gee expected to return to the Mets rotation after one more rehab start in the minors, this could be the last time Syndergaard pitches in the majors for a while.
“I would love to stay,” Syndergaard told MLB.com “Nobody wants to be pitching at Triple-A. The ultimate goal is to be pitching in the big leagues.”
Starting for the Pirates on Friday night will be Gerrit Cole. The right-hander is 5-2 with a 2.40 ERA on the season. With a win, Cole would tie four other pitchers for the major league lead in wins.
Friday night’s game will be the third game of the Pirates eight-game home stand. The team got swept by the Minnesota Twins earlier this week.
Josh Harrison has been Pittsburgh’s hottest hitter over the last week. The outfielder is 16 for 29 over his last six games.
After hitting.194 in April, Andrew McCutchen is having a much better May. The centerfielder is batting .282 with three home runs and 10 RBIs this month.
In game two of the series, ace Matt Harvey will pitch for the Mets. The former North Carolina Tar Heel is 5-1 with a 1.98 ERA this year for New York.
Harvey has thrown 16 straight scoreless innings dating back to May 1. In his last two starts, Harvey has 18 strikeouts in 15 innings of work.
Harvey will pitch against A.J. Burnett, who has had a rough time winning games this season. Burnett has a 1.38 ERA, but only has three wins on the year because of the lack of run support Pittsburgh have given him.
In the final game of the series, Jon Niese will be up against Francisco Liriano. This season, Niese is 3-4, with a 3.72 ERA. Liriano has a 1-4 record with a 4.15 ERA.
Niese is coming off his worst start of the year. He went five innings against the Cardinals while allowing eight earned runs off of 11 hits. His ERA increased from 2.49 to 3.72.
Like Niese, Liriano has also been struggling lately. Liriano has three straight losses, including an 8-5 loss against the Pirates on Tuesday night. In that start, Liriano pitched two innings as he gave up seven runs on five hits.
New York will begin a three-game series against the Philadelphia Phillies on Memorial Day at Citi Field. With the team now in second place in the NL East, the Pirate series will be a good opportunity for the team to get back in first place in the division.