CINCINNATI — Steadier than ever with their rotation, and after keeping all of their starting pitchers in line for almost two months since acquiring Marcus Stroman, the Mets are making tweaks for the season’s final days.
Consider it a sign that, yes, their games still matter and every tiny advantage might make a difference.
More imminently, the Mets are swapping their Long Island natives, moving Stroman to Sunday and Steven Matz to Monday, a change that highlights each pitcher’s strengths.
Stroman is a ground-ball pitcher who uses a sinker down in the zone as his go-to pitch and has gotten grounders on 59 percent of batted balls in his career. Thus, he would be well suited to go against the Reds at hitter-friendly Great American Ball Park.
Matz has confusingly drastic home/road splits this year, posting a 1.94 ERA at Citi Field and a 6.62 ERA everywhere else. Instead of pitching in Cincinnati on Sunday, he faces the Marlins in Queens on Monday.
Noah Syndergaard is lined up to pitch the season finale Sept. 29 against Atlanta. If it matters in the race for a wild-card spot, the Mets instead might go to Jacob deGrom on short rest, Callaway said.
“If it comes down to it, you might see Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard pitch on the last day of the season to try to get somewhere,” Callaway said. “Whatever we have to do to extend the season.”
The Mets ended play Friday 3 1/2 games behind the Brewers for the last playoff berth.
Another MLB rookie record for Pete Alonso: He has homered in 15 ballparks ... Robert Gsellman (partially torn right lat) threw another bullpen session Friday and hopes to advance to live batting practice in a couple of days.