Friday, April 8, 2016

Return of Phils-Mets will have Citi Field rocking

The Mets may not be entirely sure if Jacob deGrom will pitch their home opener against the Phillies on Friday at 1:10 p.m. ET, but they're eager to bask in a Citi Field atmosphere that should be electric regardless.
"We're excited about getting home," manager Terry Collins said. "We were very excited to bring our fans what they were looking for, and that is a World Series appearance. I know they're excited. We saw it in Florida. We saw it in Spring Training -- we had big crowds everywhere we went. So we're anxious to get home."
The Phillies, who will start right-hander Jerad Eickhoff, may need to game plan for multiple pitchers. Though deGrom is penciled in for the start, his wife is due with the couple's first child this week. So there is a chance that deGrom will go on paternity leave, with Bartolo Colon starting in his place.
After winning just five of 19 games against their closest geographic rivals last season, including posting a 1-8 record at Citi Field, the Phillies will be looking to do more consistent damage in New York this season.
Things to know about the game:
• After playing their first two games of the season with a designated hitter in Kansas City, the Mets will revert to their normal lineup on Friday. Expect Michael Conforto to move from DH back to his normal position in left field, with Yoenis Cespedes in center and Curtis Granderson in right. Juan Lagares and Alejandro De Aza will be available off the bench.
• Though Eickhoff started only eight games as a rookie, three of those outings came against the Mets. All three were quality starts, including his seven innings of scoreless, 10-strikeout ball on Oct. 1. But Eickhoff lost two of those three starts despite posting a 2.25 ERA with 20 strikeouts and just four walks.
• Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis, who homered on Opening Day, has five hits in nine career at-bats against deGrom. But he is just a .222 career hitter at Citi Field.

No comments: