Marcus Stroman made his New York Mets debut on Saturday and has a few things to work on before he takes the mound next.
On Saturday night, Marcus Stroman made his much-anticipated debut for the New York Mets at PNC Park against the Pittsburgh Pirates. He was hit pretty hard but was able to keep the game close enough for the Mets to come back and win it.
He ended up allowing seven hits and three runs in 4.1 IP. His biggest problem was his command, which he admitted in his post-game interview. The first inning was the worst for him: he allowed four straight singles, a walk, and two runs.
However, after the first, he watched video of his mechanics and that appeared to do the trick. He was much better afterward and seemed to get into a rhythm. He also showed us why he won a Gold Glove in 2017: he made a stunning bare-handed play in the first inning that saved a run.
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Stroman’s first start as a Met was not ideal, but Mets fans should not be worried. First of all, Stroman has not pitched in nine days: his last start for the Toronto Blue Jays was on July 24. That long of a break between starts can ruin a pitcher’s groove, but he should be fine after last night.
Additionally, home plate umpire Bill Welke was terrible for Stroman (as well as Pirates starting pitcher Chris Archer). The strike-zone was very tight and lots of should-be strikes were called balls. The Pirates should have scored at least one fewer run than they did with Stroman on the mound.
The fact that Stroman was able to readjust and get into a good rhythm after his bad first inning is promising, so I don’t think he has much to work on before his next start.
We also can’t forget that he’s pitching in a different league, on a different team, with a different catcher, and this takes some getting used to. This start should be an anomaly, especially because of the unfortunate umpire situation that he had to deal with.
What does he need to work on before he takes the mound next?
He will probably need to work with both Mets catchers, Wilson Ramos and Tomas Nido, a little extra just so that they can get used to each other. By adding Stroman, the Mets now have one of the best starting rotations in MLB.
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He is one of the best pitchers in the entire league this year and will absolutely help the red-hot Mets as they get back into the playoff hunt.