Won The Series. Couldn’t Get The Sweep -April 1, 2018-

Picture: NY Daily News

The St. Louis Cardinals have a very good lineup.

I feel like that’s very important to mention. When they are matched up with Noah Syndergaard or Jacob deGrom they may not look as impressive as they are. They are deep though and contain proven Met killers like Yadier Molina. Paul Dejong and Jose Martinez seem interested in joining the club as well.

I do like the Mets lineup. I’m going to like it a little more when Michael Conforto returns.

**Speaking of Michael Conforto..It was announced that our young stud was on his way to New York this morning.**

We need our starting pitching to perform. To say anyone in the rotation besides deGrom and Syndergaard is anything but a question mark at this point would be patently false.

So all eyes were on Steven Matz this afternoon.  Up and down? Injury plagued? All accurate descriptions of his career thus far. He secured a rotation spot for the upcoming year with a strong close to the spring, but many questions remain. Although he was pitching through injury in 2017 he finished with an awful ERA just over 6. He may need time to build up his stamina as he only logged 66 innings last year.

For the record, I think Matz will be good as long as he can stay healthy.

Ok, enough preamble. Matz wasn’t too effective today. He allowed 3 runs to a very good Cardinals lineup, but only lasted 4 innings. He gave up four hits and struck out 4. 4’s all around. He also walked 3 batters, contributing to his high pitch count and early exit.

Here’s how the pitchers out of the bullpen fared after Matz’ early exit.

Not too bad. Two more runs were scored. Marcell Ozuna singled home a run, and Paul Dejong hit his second home run of the game. It should be mentioned that Yadier Molina hit a solo shot off Matz. These guys are Mets killers for real.

We saw the season debut of Jacob Rhame, Paul Sewald and AJ Ramos today. Sewald was a little shaky, allowing four base runners and one run in his 2 innings of work. Rhame who was a surprise addition to the opening day roster allowed a run in an inning and two thirds. I think we all breathed a sigh of relief when Ramos worked a clean inning.

Steven was opposed by Luke Weaver. Weaver, the Cardinals’ young pitching phenom, had a strong close to 2017 and a spring where he was nearly unhittable. He kept the Mets largely in check, allowing just one run over 5 innings. He struck out 3, walked 3 and allowed 5 hits. Amed Rosario drove in the only run off Weaver, singling to right, scoring Kevin Plawecki.

Not much offense today, but here’s the box score anyway.

Mets were essentially shut down all day, but Juan Lagares had 3 hits which was nice to see. Lagares was originally out of the lineup today, but replaced Brandon Nimmo, who was dealing with flu like symptoms.

Well, you can’t win them all. A sweep would have been nice, but it was great to get the series victory to open the year.

Mets are back in action tomorrow, with Matt Harvey taking the mound as we open a series against the Philadelphia Phillies in Citi Field.