Mets-Phillies Game Thread 5/7/12
From one sizzling rivalry to one simmering rivalry. The Phillies return home to welcome the 15-13 New York Mets, a once-bitter rival. Since 2007, when the Phillies overcame the Mets’ seven-game division lead with 17 games left to play in the regular season — proving Jimmy Rollins‘ pre-season “team to beat” comment correct — the two teams had been at war. However, after the 2009 season when the Phillies had followed up their World Series championship with another Fall Classic appearance and the Mets followed up an 89-win ’08 season with a 70-92 finish, the rivalry lost its luster. The Mets’ financial issues made it hard even for Phillies fans to kick a team while it was down.
This year, though, the Mets finally match up well with the Phillies for the first time since ’07. David Wright is back as baseball’s premier third baseman, Johan Santana has overcome a significant shoulder injury, and an infusion of youth (Ruben Tejada, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Lucas Duda) has the Mets over .500, in third place in the NL East. Roy Halladay (3.59 xFIP) will open the series tonight, opposing Jonathan Niese (3.45).
- Andres Torres, CF (.312 wOBA)
- Kirk Nieuwenhuis, LF (.355)
- David Wright, 3B (.427)
- Lucas Duda, RF (.331)
- Daniel Murphy, 2B (.322)
- Ike Davis, 1B (.225)
- Justin Turner, SS (.262)
- Josh Thole, C (.322)
- Jon Niese, P