After sweeping the Royals in a three-game series, the Yankees are staying in the Bronx for a two-game Subway Series matchup against the Mets, who, at 46-53, have disappointed even more than their crosstown rivals in 2023. The directions of the two teams could be very different by the time the trade deadline rolls around, but for now, we get to see two teams towards the bottom of their divisions that happen to be in the same city play against each other.
Tuesday: Justin Verlander vs. Domingo Germán:
The Mets’ season has been one full of turmoil and underperformance for lots of players, and the 2022 AL Cy Young winner hasn’t had a worthy follow-up at age-40. In 83 innings pitched, Verlander has thrown to the tune of a 3.47 ERA, 3.98 FIP, and a 4.50 xFIP, all of which are some of the worst in his career. He’s pitched a little better recently, but on the whole, he hasn’t met expectations. After being signed to a huge $43.3 million deal, there are some questions as to whether or not Verlander will be traded at the deadline.
Despite some strong outings this season, including a perfect game against the Athletics, Domingo Germán hasn’t been all that strong for the Yankees, either. His 4.52 ERA is a bit worse than his 4.11 xFIP in 97.2 innings pitched, but neither are among the best he has posted in a season, and neither are towards the top of the Yankees rotation. Verlander might be underperforming this season, but he can still throw with the best of them, and the Yankees are going to need the best form of Germán in order to top the Mets in the first game of the series.
Wednesday: José Quintana vs. Carlos Rodón:
José Quintana lost in his Mets debut after returning from bone graft surgery to repair a stress fracture and remove a benign lesion from his rib, but the 34-year-old left hander said he felt good in his first start this season. He’s looking to take a big win in his second appearance on the mound in 2023. The former Baby Bomber throws four pitches, a sinker, four-seam fastball, changeup, and curveball. In his first game, he threw five innings and ended with a 3.60 ERA, 2.08 FIP, 3.38 xFIP, and the lowest average fastball velocity of his career at 90.5 mph. Last year, Quintana pitched in 165.2 innings with the Pirates and Cardinals, posting a 2.93 ERA with a 2.99 FIP and 3.72 xFIP in a comeback season.
In Carlos Rodón’s last start, he blew kisses to Yankees fans in attendance at Angel Stadium after throwing 4.1 innings, giving up four hits, six earned runs, two home runs, walking five batters, and striking out only three. His three starts as a Yankee have not gone as advertised, and his season ERA is all the way up at 7.36. Rodón’s FIP and xFIP aren’t doing him any favors at 7.17 and 6.27 respectively. After coming back from injury, the hype was real, but so far, he hasn’t lived up to it. What better way to start winning the hearts of the Bronx faithful than a big performance in the Subway Series? These two teams have some very expensive top-of-the-rotation hurlers, and Rodón can begin to prove he is worth the long-term gamble in the back end of this two-game set. At the very least, it would take a small step to restore some confidence from the fanbase.