DENVER — In a flashback to last year’s trip to the Mile High City, the Mets were again hit with snowy and frosty weather that shelved their series opener against the Rockies.
The Mets’ game against the Rockies, scheduled for 8:40 p.m. ET at Coors Field, was postponed due to heavy snow in the forecast, the home team announced on Friday afternoon. The matchup will be made up as part of a split doubleheader on Saturday, with Game 1 starting at 3:10 p.m. ET and Game 2 beginning at 8:40 p.m. ET. It will be the Mets’ fifth doubleheader of the season.
The city of Denver issued a winter storm and freeze warning beginning Friday evening that would last all the way until Saturday morning/afternoon. Total snow accumulations were forecasted to be between 3 and 10 inches, with temperatures dropping to 26 degrees.
The Mets were snowed out in Colorado last year (April 16, 2021). Prior to that, the last time the Mets were snowed out was on April 2, 2018 vs. Philadelphia at Citi Field. Before last season, the Mets were last snowed out in Colorado on April 15 and April 17, 2013.
Of course, when the Mets begin a three-game road trip to sunny California against the Giants on Monday, the weather in Denver is expected to return to being warm and sunny.
Carlos Carrasco (3-1, 3.73 ERA) was scheduled to face off against right-hander German Marquez (1-3, 6.16 ERA) in the series opener. The Mets did not announce their Saturday pitching plans as of Friday afternoon, but it is expected that Carrasco will take the mound on an extra day of rest for at least one of the two games.
The Mets (26-14) are in need of a spot starter on Saturday for whichever game Carrasco does not pitch. Trevor Williams (2-4, 4.20 ERA) just pitched Game 1 of the team’s doubleheader against the Cardinals on Tuesday, so he would be pitching on just three days’ rest if the Mets decided to go that route. Taijuan Walker (1-0, 3.52 ERA) is the scheduled starter for Sunday.
But it gets trickier after that, with injuries deconstructing the top of the Mets rotation.
Max Scherzer is sidelined until at least the end of June with a moderate to high oblique strain, so the Mets will need a regular replacement for the ace beginning Monday at San Francisco, which was his scheduled start day. Tylor Megill, who has been dealing with right biceps tendinitis since at least last Sunday, is expected to begin playing catch sometime this weekend. But Megill doesn’t appear close to rejoining the rotation.
And, of course, Jacob deGrom is still on the 60-day injured list with a stress reaction on his scapula. DeGrom recently began increasing his distance and velocity while throwing on flat ground, but he has yet to throw off the mound.
David Peterson, who has not pitched since May 13 for Triple-A Syracuse, is the next best depth option to replace Scherzer. But, as of Friday afternoon, the Mets were still going through their options for Saturday’s spot starter and Monday’s outing. It’s possible, a team official said, that Peterson could jump into the rotation as early as Saturday and the Mets will push Williams back to Monday.
These next several weeks will feature a jigsaw puzzle of sorts for Buck Showalter’s Mets as they maneuver how best to proceed with their thin rotation.
Williams and Peterson, both of whom can be considered the team’s long-relief options, potentially sliding into the rotation on a regular basis will rely on their results. Williams has been solid for the Mets, hurling 7.2 scoreless innings combined in his last two outings (one long relief outing and one start against the Nationals and Cardinals, respectively). Peterson has a 1.89 ERA in 19 innings and four games (three starts) for the Amazin’s early this season, when he filled in for the injured Taijuan Walker.
Most alarmingly, the Mets bullpen is in danger of being overworked while Scherzer and Megill are on the IL as both of those right-handers were able to go deep into games. Without them, the relief corps may be called upon earlier, thus taxing a unit that is already one of the team’s weakest links.
The Mets are 6-2 in doubleheaders this year with two sweeps and two splits.