There Was No Doubt About It

A Pittsburgh Pirates Blog

Pirates at Mets: Locke Looks to Rebound

06.15.16 Posted by

Locke vs. Syndergaard, 7:10 PM

You never know which Jeff Locke you’re gonna get. For over five weeks, Locke was good or very good in nearly every start (the biggest exception coming against the Merciless Cubs). Then he got kicked around in Colorado, albeit because of a horrendous cross-country flight in the middle of a homestand, and because he was probably left in the game as a sort of sacrifice at the alter of bullpen preservation. That doesn’t explain why he was bad, just why he was allowed to be bad long enough to give up 11 (!) runs.

This time, he faces the Mets, and the Pirates have done an exceptional job of shutting down their offense this year. And that’s been good, because the Mets’ rotation has been about as good as billed; they’ve been losing despite getting quality starts from their starters nearly every game. The last time the Bucs faced Syndergaard (tonight’s starter for New York), they scored three runs (two earned) off of him in six innings, and that was nearly enough, as the bullpen blew a late lead and lost the game in extra innings. As modest as that result was, I think you’d have to seriously consider taking it again, if offered.

It seems weird to say we should beat up on the Mets before the going gets tough, because the Mets are pretty good. But that’s the situation the Pirates are in: it only gets harder from here. It’s entirely possible they could play fairly well and still be under .500 after the seven games against the Cubs and Giants that come after this series is over.

First pitch is at 7:10 PM.

Filed under: game preview, Jeff Locke