NEW YORK (AP) — Rainouts have become routine for the New York Mets.
The series finale between the Mets and Atlanta Braves scheduled for Sunday night at Citi Field was postponed because of more wet weather in New York.
The teams will make it up as part of a single-admission doubleheader on July 26 beginning at 5:10 p.m. Both games will be set for seven innings.
It was the second washout of the series and third in five days for the NL East-leading Mets in a season filled with interruptions from the very beginning.
Two-time Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom (3-2, 0.80 ERA) had been slated to pitch for New York against Max Fried (2-2, 4.63) in a nationally televised game on ESPN. But with rain falling throughout an unseasonably chilly afternoon in Queens and a forecast of showers deep into the night, the game was called a little more than 90 minutes before the scheduled first pitch.
The teams were also rained out Friday night. That game will be made up in a single-admission doubleheader on June 21 starting at 5:10 p.m., also with seven-inning games.
New York won 13-2 on Saturday night, the only game of the scheduled three-game series that was played.
The depleted Mets (25-20) begin a nine-game road trip Monday night at Arizona, which ended a 13-game losing streak Sunday with a 9-2 win over St. Louis.
New York manager Luis Rojas said deGrom will start the opener, and first baseman Pete Alonso (sprained right hand) could come off the injured list along with reliever Seth Lugo (right elbow surgery) and outfielder Kevin Pillar, who sustained multiple facial fractures when he was hit square in the nose by a fastball on May 17.
Despite having 16 players on the injured list, New York has won four straight overall and nine of its past 10 at Citi Field, where the Mets are 15-5 this year.
“I know that we can take this game to the road, too,” Rojas said.
Fried was pushed back to Tuesday at home against Washington, with Charlie Morton starting Monday evening versus the Nationals as scheduled.
“It gets messed up. Guys are pitching on way too much time off,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “But what are you going to do? You just have to deal with it.”
Atlanta split two games in Boston last week between off days on Monday and Thursday.
“It’s not ideal,” Snitker added. “We go on a weeklong road trip and played three games.”
Things will be much different down the road.
Atlanta (24-26), the three-time defending division champion, will now play a four-game series at Citi Field from June 21-23 and a five-game set in Queens from July 26-29.
After getting rained out Wednesday night, the Mets swept a doubleheader from Colorado in a pair of seven-inning games Thursday. It was New York’s fourth doubleheader already this season — the Mets are 6-2 in those games — with essentially six more scheduled, including against Miami on Aug. 31 to finish an April game suspended by rain in the first inning.
“We know that there’s a pile of doubleheaders coming our way,” Rojas said. “I don’t think that’s bothering us. … I think the guys just have that strong mentality that we’ll be ready.”
New York has played four fewer games than any other major league team. The Mets have had seven games postponed by bad weather, plus the suspension against the Marlins. Even the first scheduled series of the season was wiped out in Washington because of COVID-19 issues for the Nationals.
After missing a couple of weeks due to tightness on his right side, deGrom returned from the injured list Tuesday night and struck out nine in five innings of three-hit ball against the Rockies, his first big league outing since May 9. The right-hander did not get a decision in New York’s 3-1 win.
BEHIND THE PLATE
With Alonso expected to be activated, Rojas said Tomás Nido and James McCann will split catching duties for the time being.
Nido was the clear backup going into the season but has provided some surprising punch on offense to go with his solid defense.
McCann, who signed a $40.6 million, four-year contract to join the Mets as a free agent last offseason, is just beginning to break out of a season-long slump. He has been playing first base for the first time in his professional career to help fill in for Alonso.
Braves: OF Cristian Pache (hamstring) was supposed to begin a rehab assignment Saturday with Triple-A Gwinnett, but was held out when he felt discomfort warming up. “They didn’t want to take any chances so they just shut him down and will try him again on Tuesday,” Snitker said. “Actually, I think his groin was a little tight this time, and they didn’t want to push that, either.”
Mets: CF Brandon Nimmo (left index finger bone bruise) should start swinging in a few days, Rojas said. … RHP Dellin Betances, on the 60-day IL with a right shoulder impingement, has thrown a couple of side sessions but the Mets have not discussed timing for a rehab assignment yet, Rojas said. … OF Mason Williams was promoted from Triple-A Syracuse to the big league taxi squad.
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