which is why the phrase “deGrom trade” is an easy search engine term.
The Mets were originally going to start deGrom Friday but scratched him due to a family situation, and the ace will start in the middle game of a three-game series against the Miami Marlins on Saturday at Marlins Park.
On a team with one of the National League’s worst records at 32-47, deGrom is doing his part even if the record does not show it. He is 5-3 with a 1.69 ERA, though three of those wins were when the Mets opened 11-1 and were 17-9 in April.
The Mets are 15-38 since then after stranding 10 and wasting nine walks in Friday’s 7-2 loss to Miami. They are 6-10 when deGrom starts and have dropped eight of their last 10 games when deGrom pitches.
Most of it is due to the sub-par offense as New York owns a .232 batting average. The Mets have scored three runs or fewer in nine of deGrom’s last 10 starts, including last Saturday’s 8-3 loss when he allowed three runs and five hits in six innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
“My changeup was terrible,” deGrom said. “My slider was good at times, but other times it wasn’t even close to being a strike. So I had one pitch, my fastball, that I couldn’t really locate. You’re trying to get big league hitters out with a pitch that you don’t really know where it’s going, and the other ones were garbage. I just wasn’t very good tonight.”
It is because of the losing that the debate rages on about what the Mets should do with deGrom, who made his major league debut on May 15 Zach Gentry Jersey , 2014, and will not be a free agent until after the 2020 season.
Whatever the decision is on deGrom it will be made by John Ricco, who is filling in along with Omar Minaya and J.P. Ricciardi while general manager Sandy Alderson focuses on cancer treatments. Before Wednesday’s 5-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates, he discussed the possibility of dealing of deGrom.
“We’re going to talk about that,” Ricco said. “We just kind of got into this. Sandy was on the record with one point of view. We’ll get together to discuss it. Obviously, they’re two huge pieces for us. We’ll have to consider. For me, everything has to be on the table. But you have to look long and hard before you move a game-changing, top-of-the-rotation pitcher.”
Against Miami, deGrom is 4-4 with a 3.62 ERA in 14 career starts. This season he allowed four runs on seven hits in six innings in an 8-6 win at Miami on April 10 and pitched seven scoreless innings in a 2-1 home loss on May 23.
While the Mets start their ace, Miami will unveil another prospect when Pablo Lopez starts. After Sandy Alcantra pitched five innings Friday, Lopez will be the sixth Miami pitcher to make his major league debut.
“It’s still very unreal,” Lopez told reporters before the series opener. “It still doesn’t feel real that I’m right here with this field , with these teammates, this scenario. It’s still very overwhelming, but still very exciting as well.”
Lopez is among four prospects acquired from the Seattle Mariners for David Phelps on July 20, and when he struck out eight in 4 2/3 innings during spring training, the Marlins noticed.
“I remember hearing at the winter meetings in November, I believe, how much our guys liked him and the presence he had,” Miami manager Don Mattingly told reporters. “We were able to see it in spring training. It was impressive, just his whole demeanor, the way he handles himself. You can tell, he’s a sharp kid, well prepared.”
In 12 combined starts for Double-A Jacksonville and Triple-A New Orleans , he is 2-3 with a 1.44 ERA while opposing hitters are hitting .196 (46-for-235). He is ranked sixth among full-season minor leaguers in ERA and WHIP (0.93) and leads all Miami minor league pitchers in ERA.
Lopez started the season at Jacksonville, where he was 1-2 with a 0.62 ERA in eight starts. In his four starts with New Orleans, he allowed seven earned runs in 18 2/3 innings.
SAN FRANCISCO — Two teams expecting key pitchers to be ready for their regular duties clash Saturday afternoon when the St. Louis Cardinals and San Francisco Giants lock horns for the third time in their four-game series.
The clubs have split the first two games, with the Cardinals doing pretty much all the hitting in an 11-2 shellacking on Thursday night, before the Giants got the better of a pitchers’ duel in a 3-2 victory on Friday.
Two days after watching Johnny Cueto get rocked in his return from the disabled list, Jeff Samardzija is expected to make his first start for the Giants since May 29.
Samardzija (1-4, 6.56) struggled through pectoral and shoulder soreness in April and May before being shelved.
“I always willed myself through little injuries and pains here and there along the way,” Samardzija told SFGate.com. “I thought with a little break, I’d be fine. It just ended up being an uphill battle the whole time. We feel back to normal.”
He pitched well against the Cardinals last season, allowing a total of one run and seven hits in 15 innings in two starts, striking out 17.
He didn’t get a decision in either game, both of which the Giants won.
Samardzija has faced the Cardinals 23 times in his career 2 times as a starter, and has a 4-4 record with a 3.68 ERA.
The veteran’s return means the Giants will have their three top guns — Madison Bumgarner, Cueto and Samardzija — in the rotation at the same time for the first time this season.
Samardzija will be opposed by Cardinals right-hander Carlos Martinez (5-4, 3.20), who is coming off consecutive strong outings against Cleveland and Arizona, giving up a total of four runs in 12 innings in a pair of wins.
He will be pitching in San Francisco for just the second time in his career, having allowed one run in five innings in a Cardinals win in 2014.
Martinez is 2-1 with a 3.09 ERA in his career against the Giants in five games, including three starts.
The 26-year-old has dominated his head-to-heads with several of the Giants’ top hitters, including Buster Posey (1-for-9, .111) and Andrew McCutchen (7-for-39, .179). McCutchen delivered the eventual game-winning hit in Friday’s San Francisco win.
St. Louis welcomed back Paul DeJong from the DL on Friday and he responded immediately with a hit and scored both of the Cardinals’ runs.
The standout second baseman had been out for seven weeks with a fractured hand.
The Cardinals didn’t have closer Bud Norris available to them in the first two games of the series after he experienced pain in his right index finger in Arizona on Wednesday.
Norris, a San Francisco Bay Area native , underwent an MRI on Friday and was cleared to remain on the active roster.
He threw a side session before Friday’s game and Cardinals manager Mike Matheny announced he would be available to pitch on Saturday.
“At this point in this season, we’re going to get every look at every guy we can,” Matheny said of recent roster shuffling that included the return outfielder Dexter Fowler from the DL on Thursday. “Whenever they get a runny nose, I think we’ll have two different doctors check it out. It’s that kind of year. Be cautious when we can.”
Fowler hasn’t started either game in the series, but is a candidate to play Saturday based on his five career extra-base hits, including a home run, in 33 at-bats against Samardzija.