The Mets begin a three-game against the Baltimore Orioles at Citi Field tonight at 7:10.The Orioles come into this series as arguably the biggest surprise in baseball this season. Led by Buck Showalter
, Baltimore is 39-27 and only 1.5 games back in the tough American League East.Baltimore is a young but balanced team on offense. Their biggest threat is Adam Jones
, who is hitting .311 with 18 homers, 39 RBI, and a .360 on-base percentage. Young first baseman Chris Davis
is also having a nice campaign, hitting .294 with 12 home runs and 31 RBI.Luckily for the Mets in this series, they will avoid facing Baltimore's two best pitchers, Jason Hammel
and Wei-Yin Chen
. Hammel, who threw a one-hit shutout in his last outing, is 7-2 on the season with a 2.87 ERA. Chen, a rookie out of Taiwan, is 6-2 with a 3.36 ERA. Past these two, the Baltimore rotation is pretty weak.Here are the pitching matchups:Game 1- Tonight 7:10R.A. Dickey
(10-1, 2.20 ERA) vs. Jake Arrieta
(3-8, 5.89 ERA)Game 2- Tuesday 7:10Johan Santana
(4-3, 3.23 ERA) vs. Tommy Hunter
(3-3, 5.58 ERA)Game 3- Wednesday 7:10Dillon Gee
(4-5, 4.43 ERA) vs. Brian Matusz
(5-7, 4.94 ERA)More notes...
- No hitter watch for Dickey? :)
- Mark Reynolds, who used to be one of the most dangerous power hitters in the game, is having a terrible season. Coming off a 37 home run season, Reynolds has just five in 145 at-bats this year. Although he is hitting .241, better than last year and a lot better than two years ago, he just isn't the power threat this year that he's been in years past.
- The Orioles will be without Endy Chavez, who was placed on the DL Thursday. They will also be missing Nick Markakis, who hasn't played a game this month.
- On paper, the Mets pitching should dominate this series. As long as the offense can score four runs in each game, which will be harder than it sounds with this lineup, the Mets will likely win the series.