Saturday, May 23, 2015

AJ v Harvey In a Deluxe Duel; Lineup & Notes

Today's Game: AJ Burnett (3-1, 1.38) battles Matt Harvey (5-1, 1.98). This should be a dandy. Burnett has won his last three starts after a long bout of non-support. But he's not so hot against the New York gang - AJ is 5-9 with a 4.18 ERA in 24 career starts, and was beat up pretty well by the Mets last year as a Phil. Harvey is the real deal; over his short career, he's K'ed more than a man per inning, has a WHIP under one and a 2.39 ERA, to go with a 2.31 FIP. Matt hasn't given up a run in his last 16 innings while becoming the fifth pitcher in team history to surrender no runs with nine strikeouts in consecutive starts, yet hasn't won in his last three outings. He last faced the Bucs in 2013 (he lost last year to TJ surgery) and got a no-decision. The game starts at 4:05 and will be Root Sports and 93.7 The Fan.

Same set as yesterday, with Fran back behind the dish.

  • AJ needs four K's to pass Luis Tiant and move up to #39 on the all-time whiff list.
  • Chris Stewart has thrown out 50% (7-of-14) base stealers.
  • Per Elias Stats, Gerrit Cole is the first Pirate pitcher in over 100 years to win 27 of his first 50 major-league games.
  • The game is expected to sell out with the perfect trifecta - great holiday weather, a top flight pitching match and Josh Harrison bobblehead day.
  • Among all MLB teams, Pittsburgh’s starting pitchers rank second with a 3.32 ERA while the New York Mets rank third (3.43).
  • The Mets have decided to go with a six-man rotation. Dillon Gee is coming off the DL, but they'll keep his replacement, Noah Syndergaard, in the rotation. The six starters will provide a layer of protection for Matt Harvey, returning from TJ surgery, and 42-year-old Bartolo Colon.

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