BREAKING NEWS: Fresh off another series win, Mets visit Giants for three

Having seen their winning streak come to an end the finale of a series they won in Los Angeles, the Mets (12-9) travel north to San Francisco for a three- game series against the Giants (10-13).

Over the weekend, the Mets beat the Dodgers handily to open the series, won again on Saturday, and saw an imbalanced pitching matchup turn very much not in their favor in the series finale yesterday. But the series win constitutes a great weekend for the Mets, and it continues the team’s streak that has seen it win every series since taking two of three from the Reds on the first weekend of April.

San Diego Padres v. San Francisco Giants

The team did suffer a couple of injuries that will affect its roster. Francisco Alvarez slipped a bit while taking an extra base and injured his thumb and is expected to miss six to eight weeks, as it turns out the injury will require surgery. The Mets called up Tomás Nido to take his place on the roster and will presumably turn to Omar Narváez as their starting catcher in Alvarez’s absence with Nido serving as his backup. Neither of the two has hit well at the major league level over the past few years, though both saw that playing time diminish significantly last year when Alvarez established himself as the starter.

Mets Series Preview: Mets close out homestand with three against Giants -  Amazin' Avenue

Brooks Raley also hit the injured list with inflammation in his left elbow. The team said that an MRI showed no structural damage and expects him to be back when his IL stint is up in two weeks, but he’s been one of several relievers who has gotten off to a great start this year. Grant Hartwig took his spot on the roster, at least for a day yesterday, and gave up a couple of runs in two innings against the Dodgers. Whether Hartwig sticks around or is cycled for another arm out of Syracuse, the loss of Raley likely makes for a temporary downgrade in that spot in the bullpen.

In the non-injury department, it would be fair if the Mets had some concerns about Adrian Houser’s status in the starting rotation. It’s still very early in the season, and the Dodgers are perpetually capable of putting up a big day at the plate. But Houser has a 7.45 ERA and a 5.14 FIP through his first four starts as a Met. If the team were to turn to another pitcher in the near future, Joey Lucchesi could get a look and is pitching reasonably well in Syracuse. Christian Scott, the Mets’ top pitching prospect right now, has a tantalizing strikeout rate and should get consideration for the role, but it wouldn’t be shocking to see the team consider him. There’s no indication that a change is imminent, but it’s a thing to think about.

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As for the Giants, the team begins the series in fourth place in the National League West, and they’re 5-5 over their past ten games. Most recently, they split a series with the division rival Diamondbacks with one of the losses having seen them lose by sixteen runs. On the whole, the team has scored 4.18 runs per game, which is a bit below the major league average. When it comes to run prevention, though, the Giants’ 5.05 runs allowed per game is the sixth-highest mark in the league.

Two of the Giants’ regulars are hitting well above league average by wRC+: Lamonte Wade Jr. and Patrick Bailey. Old friend Michael Conforto and new addition Jorge Soler have been just shy of the 120 wRC+ mark to start the year, and June Hoo Lee are Nick Ahmed are a tick above league average, while Matt Chapman is a tick below.

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Jordan Hicks, who is attempting to be a starting pitcher again this year, has gotten off to the best start of any Giants starter, but the Mets will miss him in this series. The Giants’ rotation ranks 22nd in baseball with a 4.56 ERA, but the team’s bullpen has a 5.62 ERA that is the second-worst mark in baseball, better than only the Phillies. Given the Mets’ ability to put up runs late in games, getting to San Francisco’s bullpen could be pretty useful over the course of these three games.

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