Red Sox-Mets Preview
After one starter with one of baseball's best home ERAs failed to end the New York Mets' woes at Citi Field, they will turn to another in that category.
Noah Syndergaard seeks to win his sixth straight home start and help the Mets avoid their first six-game slide at Citi Field in two years Sunday in the finale of a three-game series with the Boston Red Sox.
New York (71-58) fell 3-1 on Saturday despite a strong start from Jacob deGrom, who allowed two runs in six innings as his home ERA rose to 1.57 - the fourth-best mark in the majors and third-best in the NL.
Right behind deGrom among NL pitchers is Syndergaard (8-6, 3.19 ERA), who has a 1.82 ERA at Citi Field while going 7-1 in nine outings. Syndergaard has a 1.62 ERA with 41 strikeouts over 39 innings in winning his last five home starts.
The rookie right-hander will pitch one day after his 23rd birthday. He earned his first road win Tuesday by yielding four runs over five innings with nine strikeouts in a 6-5 victory over Philadelphia.
"This is a good step in the right direction," Syndergaard said. "I'm not trying to pay too much attention to that."
Syndergaard is 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in three interleague starts as he faces Boston (60-69) for the first time.
The Red Sox are in position for their first road sweep after Joe Kelly won his sixth straight decision Saturday and Pablo Sandoval and Brock Holt had RBIs in a two-run sixth inning.
Interim manager Torey Lovullo is without Hanley Ramirez, who will likely sit out a third straight game with a shoulder issue.
David Ortiz was out of the lineup with a heel problem, though he had a pinch-hit double in the ninth. He will likely start Sunday.
"He knows himself very well, and when he says he needs to get off his feet, we understand that needs to happen quickly," Lovullo told MLB's official website.
Catcher Ryan Hanigan's status is not clear after he was scratched from Saturday's lineup an hour before the game with tightness in his right calf with Blake Swihart replacing him. Rusney Castillo is expected to start Sunday after he was rested and limited to a pinch-running appearance the day before.
New York captain David Wright is expected back in the lineup after going 4 for 11 in consecutive extra-inning contests before resting Saturday. The Mets are being cautious since he missed more than four months with spinal stenosis.
New York averaged 10.4 runs in a seven-game win streak before this series in which it has totaled five in 19 innings.
"We've been smashing the ball and today, the last two games, we have not," manager Terry Collins said. "Today we looked a little tired."
Yoenis Cespedes is 0 for 7 in this series. Collins indicated that he and Travis d'Arnaud may rest Sunday with Michael Cuddyer and Juan Lagares coming into the lineup.
Boston will start Wade Miley (10-10, 4.51), who is 0-1 with a 3.71 ERA in three career starts versus New York. The Red Sox have lost seven of his last nine outings, with the left-hander going 2-3 with a 4.53 ERA.
The Mets' Juan Uribe is 5 for 22 in this matchup and Cuddyer is 4 for 17.