|4:10 PM PT5:10 PM MT6:10 PM CT7:10 PM ET19:10 ET23:10 GMT7:10 4:10 PM MST6:10 PM EST6:40 PM VEN3:10 UAE (+1)6:10 PM CT, July 24, 2019
Citi Field, Flushing, New York Attendance: 32,252
Mets, Padres tangle in matchup of fringe contenders
Jason Vargas and Robinson Cano each turned back the clock Tuesday night and did something their younger selves rarely or ever accomplished. It's going to take a lot more than one game, though, for the New York Mets to reset the clock on their 2019 season.
The Mets envision building on the momentum created by Vargas and Cano when New York hosts the San Diego Padres on Wednesday night in the middle game of a three-game series.
Noah Syndergaard (7-4, 4.36 ERA) is scheduled to take the mound for the Mets against the Padres' Dinelson Lamet (0-2, 5.14 ERA) in a battle of right-handers.
Vargas and Cano lifted the Mets to victory Tuesday night, when Vargas earned by allowing only one hit in six scoreless innings and Cano enjoyed the first three-homer game of his career as he accounted for all of New York's runs in a 5-2 win.
It was just the third time in 235 career starts that Vargas limited an opponent to one hit over at least six innings. Cano's three-homer game was the 14th in Mets' history and only the third in a home game.
Unfortunately for the Mets, the big night by their two 36-year-old veterans did little to change the club's daunting long-term prospects. At 46-54, New York is tied with the Pittsburgh Pirates for the second-worst record in the National League. The two teams are seven games behind the second wild card, the St. Louis Cardinals.
"We're working hard to right everything that's gone bad, and that's what we'll always do," Mets manager Mickey Callaway said Tuesday night. "We wish our record was better at this point. Obviously, that's something we regret at this point."
A poor start to the second half has left the Padres alongside the Mets as afterthoughts in the NL wild-card race. San Diego has lost eight of 10 since the All-Star break to fall to 47-53.
But even if the Padres never get back into the race, the second half will be full of pivotal moments for one of the youngest starting rotations in baseball.
Lamet, 27, is scheduled Wednesday to make his fourth start since returning from Tommy John surgery. He didn't factor into the decision on July 18, when he allowed three runs (one earned) over four innings as San Diego fell to the Miami Marlins, 4-3.
Lamet, who went under the knife in April 2018, has struck out 19 but walked six in 14 innings over his first three starts.
"The more I'm on the mound, the better I feel," Lamet told reporters after his last start. "The more batters I face, the better I feel."
Syndergaard didn't factor into the decision on July 18, when he gave up one run over seven innings as the Mets fell to the San Francisco Giants 3-2 in 16 innings.
Syndergaard is 1-2 with a 4.88 ERA in four career starts against the Padres. Lamet will be facing the Mets for the first time since his major league debut on May 25, 2017, when he earned the win after allowing one run over five innings in the Padres' 4-3 victory.
--Field Level Media
Updated July 24, 2019