The New York Mets look to bounce back from a rare loss in Philadelphia and pick up a series win when they take on the host Phillies in the finale of a four-game set Sunday afternoon. After scoring 17 runs in taking the first two games of the series, the Mets were held to three hits by Aaron Nola and three relievers in Saturday’s 3-1 loss.
It snapped a six-game winning streak in Philadelphia for New York, which also reportedly shipped away veteran second baseman Neil Walker in a trade with Milwaukee. Walker joins right fielder Jay Bruce, first baseman Lucas Duda and setup man Addison Reed in a group of veterans traded away in the past few weeks as the Mets look toward 2018. Still, a win Sunday would give the club its first series victory on the road since June 27-29 at Miami. The Phillies - who have won six of their last eight at home - aim for the series split behind Zach Eflin, while New York gives the ball to rookie Chris Flexen.
TV: 1:35 p.m. ET, SNY (New York), CSN Philadelphia
PITCHING MATCHUP: Mets RH Chris Flexen (1-1, 8.49 ERA) vs. Phillies RH Zach Eflin (1-3, 5.67)
Flexen gave up eight earned runs in six innings over his first two career starts and was lifted from the second one due to a blister, but he took a slight step forward in his next turn. The 23-year-old allowed three runs and four hits while striking out four in 5 2/3 innings against Texas on Tuesday to secure his first major league victory. Flexen’s first two starts came on the road and he surrendered 13 hits and five walks in those six frames.
Eflin returned from the minors to spin seven superb innings in a win over Atlanta on Tuesday, allowing two runs and seven hits for his first victory since July 22, 2016. “I worked on some mechanical stuff in Triple-A and I feel like I’m back to my old self,” he told reporters. “I feel comfortable back on the mound.” The former first-round pick allowed one earned run in five innings at New York on April 18 and has a 3.27 ERA in two career encounters.
1. Phillies CF Odubel Herrera singled in four at-bats Saturday to extend his hitting streak to 15 games, a career high.
2. Mets LF Yoenis Cespedes has 10 home runs in 18 career games at Citizens Bank Park, including one in each of the last two.
3. Mets RH Matt Harvey (shoulder) began a rehab assignment Saturday with one inning of work for Class-A Brooklyn, allowing one run on a hit and a walk.
PREDICTION: Phillies 6, Mets 4