After this weekend, the rest of interleague play wraps up in the middle of June with the Mets heading to The Bronx June 18-20.
Neither of New York’s teams have been playing particularly well heading into the friendly rivalry. (It wasn’t what it used to be; admit it.)
The Mets have dive-bombed to last place in the NL East after beginning May in first place. The Yankees have lost eight of their last 12, but still remain in second place five games behind the Rays.
The Mets have averaged just 4.2 runs per game in May, while the Yankees have averaged two runs better in the month and still hold the highest team batting average and on-base percentage in the majors.
However, I expect this series to be low-scoring due to the quality of starting pitchers, the loss of the DH and both teams’ slumping core hitters.
|Date:||Yankees starters||Mets starters|
|Fri., 7:10 p.m.||J. Vazquez (2-4, 8.01)||H. Takahashi (3-1, 3.12)|
|Sat., 7:10 p.m.||Phil Hughes (5-0, 2.25)||Mike Pelfrey (5-1, 3.02)|
|Sun., 8:05 p.m.||CC Sabathia (4-2, 3.43)||Johan Santana (3-2, 3.72)|
Players to Watch:
Yankees: Derek Jeter. He’s always the guy to watch in interleague play. Against the Mets, he’s hitting .386/.441/.596 in 317 career plate appearances. He leads many statistical categories in interleague play and just picked up three hits yesterday to warm up.
Mets: David Wright. He’s always had great success against the Yankees (.336/.402/.593), but is in a major slump. He just snapped a 15-game streak of striking out at least once and is hitting a meager .262 this year.
Even though both teams haven’t been playing well, they know this weekend is a time to rise to the occasion and create instant classics. Yankees sweep this series, starting with an extra-innings win tonight.
**Luis Castillo is not in the lineup tonight.**