Amed Rosario is paying dividends this month after pocketing the New York Mets’ largest international signing bonus over five years ago. Rosario carries a six-game hitting streak into Thursday afternoon as New York aims for a split of its four-game series versus the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks.
Rosario highlighted his second straight two-hit performance with an RBI single in Wednesday’s 4-2 victory, giving the Mets just their second win in 10 games overall and second in their last 12 encounters with the Diamondbacks. The 21-year-old Dominican is 9-for-20 during his hitting streak and has hit safely in 11 of his last 13 outings. While the victory may have been cosmetic at best for spiraling New York, the setback was Arizona’s 10th in 15 outings as it clings to a half-game lead over Colorado in the race for the top wild-card spot in the National League. Chris Iannetta continues to contribute since fellow catcher Jeff Mathis broke his hand in the opener, belting a solo homer on Wednesday to improve to 4-for-10 with three runs scored in the series.
TV: 12:10 p.m. ET, FSN Arizona, SNY (New York)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Diamondbacks LH Robbie Ray (9-5, 3.11 ERA) vs. Mets RH Rafael Montero (2-8, 5.47)
Ray returns to the mound for the first time since July 28, when he sustained a concussion and required three staples to close the wound on the left side of his head after being on the receiving end of a line drive. A first-time All-Star this season, Ray permitted two runs on four hits with 11 strikeouts through 4 2/3 innings during his only minor-league rehab start with High-A Visalia. Ray has handcuffed the Mets in his career, posting a 1-0 mark with an 0.53 ERA after allowing just one earned run with 13 strikeouts in 17 innings.
Montero recorded his first win in nearly two months on Saturday after yielding one run on six hits in as many innings of an 8-1 triumph versus Miami. Since being promoted from Triple-A Las Vegas on June 14, the 26-year-old Dominican has notched a 4.53 ERA while striking out 59 and walking 23 in 57 2/3 frames — a much better performance from the 8.24 ERA he posted in his first 19 2/3 innings this season. Montero had a brief cameo against the Diamondbacks on May 17, surrendering a walk-off solo homer to Chris Hermann in the 11th inning.
1. Arizona RF David Peralta recorded his third three-hit performance in nine outings on Wednesday.
2. With his next victory, New York’s Terry Collins (536) will move past Bobby Valentine for solo possession of second place on the franchise’s all-time managerial win list.
3. Diamondbacks SS Ketel Marte is 1-for-18 in his last five games on the heels of a 7-for-16 performance in his previous four.
PREDICTION: Diamondbacks 6, Mets 3