After losing the first two games of this weekend's Subway Series, the Mets will try to salvage the final game of the series when they take their hacks against Yankees starting pitcher Andy Pettitte. They will attempt to do so by trotting out the following starting lineup, courtesy of the team's official Twitter account:
Sunday #Mets lineup: Torres-CF, Bay-LF, Wright-3B, Hairston-RF, Duda-DH, Rottino-1B, Quintanilla-SS, Nickeas-C, Valdespin-2B
— New York Mets (@Mets) June 10, 2012
That doesn't look too imposing, does it? There's no Kirk Nieuwenhuis, no Daniel Murphy, no Ike Davis (which isn't necessarily a bad thing) and no Josh Thole to be found in the starting lineup. But before you start waving the white flag, let's look at what each player has done against Andy Pettitte in his career, listing the number of hits that player has collected followed by his batting average, on-base percentage, extra-base hits (if any) and runs batted in (if any).
- 1. Andres Torres: 1-for-4 (.250/.250/.250)
- 2. Jason Bay: 14-for-32 (.438/.500/.625), 1 double, 1 triple, 1 HR, 3 RBI
- 3. David Wright: 10-for-21 (.476/.522/.857), 2 doubles, 2 HR, 3 RBI
- 4. Scott Hairston: 4-for-12 (.333/.333/.750), 2 doubles, 1 HR, 2 RBI
- 5. Lucas Duda: has never faced Pettitte
- 6. Vinny Rottino: has never faced Pettitte
- 7. Omar Quintanilla: has never faced Pettitte
- 8. Mike Nickeas: has never faced Pettitte
- 9. Jordany Valdespin: has never faced Pettitte
Five of the nine hitters in the starting lineup have never faced Pettitte. The other four batters are hitting a combined .420 against him (29-for-69) and have reached base at a .467 clip, while slugging .696 versus Andy Pettitte.
So before you decide to throw in the towel for this series, have some faith in your team. The lineup might not be the one you'd like to see when trying to avoid a sweep at the hands at your crosstown rivals. But Terry Collins knows what he's doing. He knows the numbers against Pettitte. He knows that the Yankees might look at the Mets' lineup and think this game is in the bag.
It's not. And nine innings from now, the brooms might have to be put away in deference to a Mets victory.