Mets Shoot For '18 Subway Series Lead in Game 5

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Yankee Stadium and The 4 Train Bronx New York

Yankee Stadium and The 4 Train Bronx New York
The 4 Train rumbles past Yankee Stadium in The Bronx on an April afternoon in 2014. Photo credit: Paulo JC Nogueira.

 
Another day, another game in the standings. The Yankees look like they are about to slip into an extended funk at the plate, and this time they won’t have the pitching to claw out improbable wins. In no time, they will be closer to 10 games behind the Boston Red Sox than 1 game behind.
 
Unless they empty the farm for Jacob deGrom, there is no pitcher available that is worth any serious group of prospects. And unless they start raking like everyone thinks they are capable of, this club has Wild Card Play-In Game potential for 2018, nothing more. It wasn’t long ago we were talking about busting the 1998 team’s numbers. Let’s hope we duplicate 2017’s success at least.
 

If You Can’t Pitch or Hit You Can’t Win

On paper, the Yankees lineup is indeed Murderer’s Row 2.0, but we’ve seen only flashes of that potential this season. And it’s been mind-numbing. Out of blind faith and hope against hopelessness, I’ll stack Yankees in a Draft King lineup night in and night out. It’s like buying a Lottery ticket — you have a chance, while you have no chance.
 
There is no compelling reason to stack Yankee hitters in the two remaining games of this series. Steven Matz and deGrom should keep the Bombers off balance — and while the Yankees might actually even win both of these by outlasting the starter and going ahead against the ‘pen, there does not appear to be an offensive explosion in the offing.
 

The Numbers

The Wise Guys have the Yankees at -228 on the moneyline with an under/over of 9. When playing in Yankee Stadium, the total has gone over in 5 of the last 7 contests between these two clubs. Straight up, the Yankees are 6-2 against the Mets over their last 8 matchups, going 4-2 at home.
 
The only offensive stat that favors the Mets is strikeout rate — 8.61 vs 9.10.
 

Steven Matz and The Mets

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Matz (4-7, 3.38 ERA, 1.25 WHIP) is gettable by a number of Yankee hitters, particularly Didi Gregorius (5-10, double) and Giancarlo Stanton (4-12, 2 home runs, 4 RBI). Albeit small sample sizes against Matz overall, he’s doesn’t seem to fool anyone.
 
But the pinstripes are looking terrible at the plate. Swinging at pitches well outside of the strike zone, jumping on first pitches when a pitcher obviously can’t find the plate, you name it. We’ve seen this movie before.

Sonny Gray’s Biggest Start

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His biggest start only because a nightmare outing will send Yankees Universe into DEFCON 4, especially on the heels of Domingo German’s train wreck last night. Gray is 6-7, 5.46 ERA with a 1.51 WHIP, which is still astounding to look at. A loss today and decisions will be coming soon. The Yankees can’t afford to slip further in the East, and with German vanquished common sense says Gray’s spot in the rotation next. Luis Cessa will take over for German. Who will replace Gray is the $64K question.
 
Gray has to be particularly concerned with Jose Bautista, Yoenis Cespedes, Michael Conforto, and Brandon Nimmo. Stacking against Gray at home is not the worst play in the world, and could reap rewards today. Be cautioned that he will be a short leash by manager Aaron Boone, and the Yankees bullpen is still a formidable weapon, so your DK points from a Mets stack will have to happen early.
 
We’re rooting for Gray. We want to see a masterpiece, but reality bites. Here’s hoping we can’t predict baseball.
 
Remember this is for speculation only, not meant to be taken as gospel. And don’t forget to double-check your lineup(s) just prior to game time as the weather may create havoc for you. We exist under the manta that “You can’t predict baseball” but it’s fun trying. Good luck with your lineup and let’s go Yankees!

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