MLB Game Preview - Chicago at NY Mets
Thu Aug 29, 2019 7:10 PM EDT

CLE
2
DET
0
F
OAK
9
KC
8
F
TB
9
HOU
8
F
MIN
10
CHW
5
F
CIN
3
MIA
4
F(12)
CHC
4
NYM
1
F
SEA
5
TEX
3
F
PIT
11
COL
8
F
LAD
5
ARI
11
F
SD
5
SF
3
F
Mets desperate to avoid sweep vs. Cubs
Thu Aug 29, 2019 10:37 AM

The New York Mets flirted with posting the biggest comeback win in team history Wednesday night. On Thursday, they just need to figure out a way to earn their biggest win of the season.

The Mets will look to avoid a damaging sweep at the hands of the visiting Chicago Cubs when the teams meet in the finale of a three-game series. Right-hander Jacob deGrom (8-7, 2.56 ERA) is scheduled to take the mound for New York against Chicago left-hander Jon Lester (10-9, 4.49).

The Cubs put another dent into the Mets' playoff hopes in eventful fashion Wednesday, scoring six runs in the first inning before hanging on for a 10-7 win.

New York trailed 8-1 in the second and 10-1 in the third but chased Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks during a five-run fifth. The Mets, whose biggest comeback win was from eight runs down against the Houston Astros on Sept. 2, 1972, had the tying run on deck in the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth and sent the tying run to the plate in the ninth.

The rallies served as a neat summation of the season thus far for the Mets, who were no better than .500 every day from May 4 through Aug. 4 but got within a half-game of a National League wild-card berth by Aug. 10, the final day of a 16-game stretch in which they went 15-1.

Now the Mets, who have lost five straight to fall four games behind the Cubs in the race for the second NL wild card, need to begin another surge.

"(Thursday's) going to be huge," Mets left fielder J.D. Davis told reporters. "We've lost these two, so we've got to scratch one, any way we can."

Chicago's playoff predicament is far less murky, but there will be no shortage of urgency Thursday night for the Cubs, who are three games behind the wild card-leading Washington Nationals and two games behind the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central. The Cardinals' six-game winning streak ended when they fell 4-1 to the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday afternoon.

A win Thursday would continue building some rare road momentum for the Cubs, who have won consecutive road series for the first time in almost four months.

Chicago, which took two of three from the Pittsburgh Pirates Aug. 17-19, last won back-to-back road series when it won the final two games of a three-game set against the Arizona Diamondbacks April 27-28 before sweeping the Seattle Mariners April 30-May 1.

"We're not satisfied here with a series victory," Hendricks said. "We're looking to come out (Thursday) and get a big one from Jon and sweep."

DeGrom didn't factor into the decision in his most recent start, when he gave up one run on four hits over seven innings Friday as before the Mets lost to the Atlanta Braves 2-1 in 14 innings. He struck out 13 and walked one.

Lester took the loss Friday when he gave up six runs on nine over 4 1/3 innings as the Cubs fell 9-3 to the Nationals.

DeGrom is 2-2 with a 3.04 ERA in eight regular-season starts against the Cubs. Lester is 6-1 with a 3.40 ERA in nine regular-season starts against the Mets.

--Field Level Media

Team Record Comparison

Team Standings GB W-L Aw/Hm Stk L10
Chicago            
NY Mets            

Scheduled Starting Pitchers

Jon Lester - CHC
Matchup
Season
vs. Opp Has not pitched vs. NY Mets
Jacob deGrom - NYM
Matchup
Season
vs. Opp Has not pitched vs. Chicago

Hot Batters (Last 10 team games)

Injury Report