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Martin Pérez Shines in Queens as Rangers beat Mets 7-3

Image Credit: Major League Baseball

Flushing, NY- The Mets plans on widening their division lead were put to a halt this week. In a matter of five games that resulted in a 1-4 record, Francisco Lindor and the Mets faced off against three potential All Star pitchers in Marlins Sandy Alcantára, Astros Justin Verlander and Rangers Martin Pérez. In what may seem to be a rough patch of the season by losing three of their last four home games, this year’s Mets have proven they are not to be reckoned with. For their series record on the season, the Mets stand at 17-5-2 and are 9-3 in rubber games. With the series finale between the Mets and Texas Rangers going down today at 1:40pm in Queens, let’s dive into the results and probable matchups. 

3-Game Series – Texas Rangers vs. New York Mets – Results and Probable Matchups

Friday 7/1 – Mets win 4-3 

Saturday 7/2 – Rangers win 7-3

Sunday 7/3 – First pitch 1:40pm 

RHP Jon Gray (4-3, 3.89 ERA) vs. RHP Carlos Carrasco (8-4, 4.85 ERA)

TEXAS RANGERS

In midst of a 9-game roadstand, Marcus Semien and the Rangers are zoned in on minimizing the 12.5-game AL West division lead set out by the Houston Astros. The Texas pitching rotation led by left-hander Martin Pérez and right-hander Jon Gray, has progressed into one of the best in the American League. The Rangers have allowed 69 HR this season, which ranks 3rd least in the AL behind the NY Yankees and Astros. 

Martin Pérez – Starting Pitcher – Guanare, Venezuela 

Image Credit: Major League Baseball

Pitching Line on Saturday Afternoon @ NY Mets

6.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 Hits, 4 Strikeouts, 97 pitches – 61 strikes

Before facing off against potential AL Cy Young candidate Martin Pérez, the Mets stood 12-4 in their last 16 games against left-handed starting pitchers. With this in mind, Pérez seemed to have everything going by forcing the Mets into soft-contact on early counts. He set a statement in his seventh victory of the season. “He’s given us quality start after quality start,” said Rangers manager Chris Woodward when asked about Pérez’s 2022 season. Saturday’s performance marked Pérez’s 13th outing of the season, where he’s gone 6.0 innings or more. 

Pérez emphasized during the postgame his focus on going deep into ball games: “If I go deep in the game, we’re going to have a chance to win. I think one big thing is I don’t want them to use the bullpen when I pitch. I’m just trying to go deep, and give the bullpen a chance to rest a little bit more.” 

He has allowed 3 earned runs or less in 12 outings this season. Proving it each and every fifth day, the 31-year-old is shaping up to receive the All-Star nod in the coming days. “I’m not thinking that. If I go, I’ll go, but I’m just focusing on pitching every five days, and getting the win every five days. I want my team to have a chance to make the playoffs this year,” said Pérez during postgame. 

In 16 starts this season, Pérez stands 7-2 with a 2.34 ERA and 81 strikeouts in 100 innings pitched. He currently leads the American League in innings pitched and ranks 4th among AL starting pitchers in ERA. He most certainly deserves the nod to represent the Texas Rangers and his native country of Venezuela in this year’s mid-summer classic held at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California. 

Adolis García – Outfielder – Ciego De Avila, Cuba 

Image Credit: Major League Baseball

2022 season statistics: .256 BA, 15 HR, 50 RBI, 75 Hits, .296 OBP

Recently, Adolis García was named the unanimous selection as Rangers June Player of the Month. In 26 games played in June, the 29-year-old batted .314 with 7 HR, 18 RBI, and 33 total hits, which shaped a .348 on base percentage. In the first two games of the series against the Mets, García has 1 hit with 1 RBI and 1 walk. 

García has proven to be the ultimate team player on defense, switching outfield positions whether in center or right field, when asked upon. He has totaled 7 outfield-assists on the season, marking the Rangers team-high. 

NEW YORK METS

In spite of the Atlanta Braves winning 22 of their last 27 games, the Mets currently hold a 2.5-game lead in the NL East. In the last month, with matchups against several World Series contenders such as the Los Angeles Dodgers, San Diego Padres, Milwaukee Brewers and Houston Astros, the Mets finished June with a 13-12 record, 48-30 overall. 

Throughout the majority of this season, New York has weathered the storm by hitting with runners in scoring position and getting elite pitching performances out of Taijuan Walker, David Peterson and Chris Bassitt and Carlos Carrasco. However, in the last week or so, the Mets have struggled offensively in key spots as well as on the mound. The Mets offense has scored 10 runs in their last 5 games with a team batting average of .191. In this span, opponents are batting .243 with 24 runs scored. 

“We’re trying to stay true to who we are. We got a couple of guys that spoiled us with a high level that will get back there again… Just got to keep running them out there,” said Mets manager Buck Showalter during postgame. 

With runners in scoring position this season, the Mets have totaled 22 hits (2nd in MLB) and 55 RBI (1st in MLB). Nonetheless, in their recent stretch of 1-4 play, the Mets have seemed unable to convert in scoring opportunities. In the 5-game stretch, New York has stranded 73 runners on base. 

Showalter showed no stress during the postgame when asked about the Mets struggles: “It’s just a part of the game. Baseball season is so long, it’s about shortening the tough times and stretching out the long ones. It’s pretty simple, so that’s what we’re trying to do.”

Image Credit: Bill Menzel/Latino Sports

The absences of Max Scherzer, Jacob DeGrom along with Tylor Megill due to injuries have put a heavy workload on New York’s pitching staff. One of the three will return on the bump this week as Scherzer is projected to start this upcoming Tuesday against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ballpark. On the season in eight starts, “Mad Max” is 5-1 with a 2.54 ERA and 59 strikeouts in 49.2 innings pitched. 

Starling Marte – Outfielder – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

📸 Photo Credit: Bill Menzel/Latino Sports

Marte has entered a hot streak as of late, batting .321, .345 OBP with 2 RBI and 9 hits in his last 7 games played. Additionally, the 33-year-old has produced for the Mets in key scenarios defensively down the stretch. To add to his clutch factor in this Mets lineup, Marte is batting .267 with 16 hits and 23 RBI with runners in scoring position. 

In a lineup paired alongside Lindor, Pete Alonso and Brandon Nimmo, Martes offensive capabilities have resulted in early scoring opportunities for the Mets. On Saturday afternoon in the bottom of the first inning, Marte got the Mets on the scoreboard with a 2-run homer to left-center field. 

Carlos Carrasco will take the mound for New York in the series finale against Texas. In his last three starts, Carrasco has a 9.69 ERA with 13 strikeouts in 13 innings pitched. Rangers RHP Jon Gray is set to make his fourteenth start of the season on Sunday afternoon. Gray stands 3-0 with a 1.37 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 19.2 innings pitched in his last three starts. 

Robert Rizzo writes for Latino Sports and NY Sports Day 

Follow on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/robert.rizzo.1042

Email: RobertRiz994@gmail.com

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