New York Mets: Rafael Betancourt

Series preview: Mets vs. Rockies

August, 5, 2013
8/05/13
6:28
PM ET

Getty ImagesThe Mets face (l to r) Tyler Chatwood, Chad Bettis and Jhoulys Chacin during a midweek series against the Colorado Rockies.
METS (49-60, third place/NL East) vs. COLORADO ROCKIES (52-61, fourth place/NL West)

Tuesday: RHP Jenrry Mejia (1-1, 2.08) vs. RHP Tyler Chatwood (7-4, 3.15), 7:10 p.m. ET

Wednesday: RHP Matt Harvey (8-3, 2.21) vs. RHP Chad Bettis (0-1, 9.00), 7:10 p.m. ET

Thursday: RHP Dillon Gee (7-8, 3.97) vs. RHP Jhoulys Chacin (10-5, 3.40), 12:10 p.m. ET

Rockies short hops

• Left fielder Carlos Gonzalez should land on the disabled list before Tuesday’s series opener after aggravating a right middle finger sprain in his final at-bat Sunday. Gonzalez has experienced multiple setbacks since originally suffering the injury on a July 7 swing. He pulled out of the Home Run Derby and All-Star Game because of the issue. Josh Rutledge may take the roster spot.

• The Rockies arrive at Citi Field having lost six of seven games during the first two stops on their road trip, at Atlanta and Pittsburgh. Since the All-Star break, Colorado pitchers have a 5.11 ERA.


Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Troy Tulowitzki has yet to hit his typical second-half stride.


• Closer Rafael Betancourt has missed the entire second half after undergoing an appendectomy. Left-hander Rex Brothers has handled the duty in Betancourt’s absence.

• The Rockies intend to pick up left-hander Jorge De La Rosa’s $11 million option for 2014. De La Rosa, 32, is 10-6 with a 3.31 ERA.

• Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is still getting his timing down at the plate and has yet to produce at his typically high second-half level since returning from the disabled list July 11. He missed 25 games with a fractured rib on his right side. Tulowitzki is a career .319 second-half hitter.

Jhoulys Chacin is coming off an outing in which he limited the Pirates to one run in eight innings to earn his 10th win. Chacin keeps the ball down, producing a 1.30 groundout-to-flyout ratio. He also has been the most efficient pitcher in Colorado’s rotation. In fact, 53 percent of his plate appearances end in three pitches or fewer and 72 percent end in four pitches or fewer -- both among the tops in the majors.

Michael Cuddyer finished third in the Home Run Derby with a combined 15 long balls between the first and second rounds. He left the Rockies on Thursday and Friday to be with his ill wife.

• The Rockies’ have lost their No. 5 starters' last 10 outings, going 0-4 apiece with Roy Oswalt and Drew Pomeranz and 0-1 apiece with ex-Met Collin McHugh and rookie Chad Bettis.

Bettis, 24, allowed five runs in five innings in his major league debut Thursday at Atlanta, including surrendering homers to Jason Heyward and Justin Upton. A second-round pick in 2010 out of Texas Tech who can register 97 mph with his fastball, Bettis had been promoted directly from Double-A Tulsa. He had missed the entire 2012 season with a shoulder issue.

Pomeranz had an 8.10 ERA in four starts before developing biceps tendinitis.

McHugh, acquired by the Rockies for Eric Young Jr., had the first shot to replace Pomeranz. But the ex-Met allowed six runs in five innings in his Rockies debut on July 27 against the Milwaukee Brewers and was returned to the minors, leading to Bettis’ chance.

Oswalt suffered a setback in his return from a left hamstring injury while pitching a simulated game Saturday in Pittsburgh. Because Oswalt is a free agent at season’s end, the Rockies could choose to leave Bettis in the rotation even when Oswalt ultimately is ready to return.

Tyler Chatwood enters Tuesday’s start off an outing in which he allowed eight runs (seven earned) in 2 1/3 innings against Atlanta. He is believed to be nursing a leg injury, although he has not acknowledged the issue. Despite the rocky last outing, Chatwood has been the most unforeseen success story among Rockies starting pitchers.

Todd Helton, who had started nine of the past 10 games for the Rockies, had a back issue resurface Sunday while pinch-hitting. Helton turns 40 on Aug. 20.

Dexter Fowler is 4-for-22 with five walks on the road trip.

• Reliever Adam Ottavino is a product of Brooklyn’s Berkeley Carroll High. He trains with Jose Reyes, Pedro Beato and other athletes at a Garden City, Long Island, facility during the offseason.

Mini-Series preview: Mets at Rockies

June, 27, 2013
6/27/13
1:18
AM ET

Getty Images/USA TODAY SportsJeremy Hefner faces Tyler Chatwood in the makeup of an April postponement.
METS (31-43, fourth place/NL East) vs. COLORADO ROCKIES (39-40, third place/NL West)

Thursday: RHP Jeremy Hefner (2-6, 3.89) vs. RHP Tyler Chatwood (4-1, 2.22), 6:10 p.m. ET

Rockies short hops

• Closer Rafael Betancourt (groin) is expected to return from the disabled list on Friday, the day after the Mets make their cameo appearance at Coors Field.

Set-up man Rex Brothers has handled closing duty in the interim. The southpaw has been 3-for-3 in save conversions and has made 31 consecutive scoreless appearances -- the second-longest streak in franchise history. Opponents are hitting .175 over 29 innings during that span. The Rockies record is 33 straight scoreless appearances by Mike Myers in 2000.

• Right fielder Michael Cuddyer homered twice at Fenway Park on Wednesday, extending his hitting streak to a franchise-record-tying 23 games. Cuddyer is hitting .375 (36-for-96) with five homers and 16 RBIs during the streak, which is the longest in the majors this season. Cuddyer shares the franchise record with Dante Bichette, who had a 23-game hitting streak in 1995.

• Outfielder Dexter Fowler missed Wednesday’s game with right wrist soreness. Tyler Colvin instead started in center field.

Troy Tulowitzki (fractured rib) has started playing catch, but is not expected to return until after the All-Star break. Since Tulowitzki’s last start on June 13, Josh Rutledge and Jonathan Herrera have shared shortstop duties.

Carlos Gonzalez was named NL Player of the Week for the period ending June 16. He has a National League-leading 21 homers, one ahead of Philadelphia’s Domonic Brown. Gonzalez left Sunday’s game with leg cramps, but returned to the lineup Tuesday.

Roy Oswalt, who signed with the Rockies on May 3, has allowed nine runs in 11 innings over two starts in the majors with Colorado.

• Since allowing five runs (four earned) in his season debut on April 24 against Atlanta, Tyler Chatwood has not allowed more than two runs in any of his past seven starts. Chatwood did miss a start earlier this month with pain in the triceps. Chatwood, 23, was obtained from the Los Angeles Angels on Nov. 30, 2011 for Chris Iannetta.

• Ex-Met Hisanori Takahashi was obtained from the Chicago Cubs last weekend for a player to be named, but the Rockies have assigned the 38-year-old left-hander to Triple-A Colorado Springs. He allowed four runs in one inning in his Sky Sox debut.

• Catcher Wilin Rosario has six multi-hit performances in his past 10 games.

Series preview: Mets at Rockies

April, 27, 2012
4/27/12
6:21
AM ET

Getty Images/Associated Press
The Mets face (l to r) Drew Pomeranz, ageless Jamie Moyer and Jeremy Guthrie this weekend at Coors Field.
METS (11-8, third place/NL East) vs. COLORADO ROCKIES (9-9, third place/NL West)

Friday: RHP Chris Schwinden (2-2, 2.05 at Triple-A Buffalo) vs. LHP Drew Pomeranz (0-1, 6.75), 8:40 p.m. ET

Saturday: RHP Dillon Gee (1-2, 5.21) vs. RHP Jeremy Guthrie (2-1, 5.92), 8:10 p.m. ET

Sunday: LHP Johan Santana (0-2, 3.00) vs. LHP Jamie Moyer (1-2, 2.28), 3:10 p.m. ET

Rockies short hops

• With an April 17 victory against the San Diego Padres, Jamie Moyer became the oldest pitcher to win a major league game, at 49 years, 151 days. The victory, the 268th of his career, tied Jim Palmer for 34th all time. Next up: Mike Mussina and Burleigh Grimes at 270. Moyer actually has been Colorado’s best starting pitcher so far this season, despite the 1-2 record. He is the only Rockie to complete at least five innings in each of his starts. He received a no-decision in his last start despite limiting the Pittsburgh Pirates to one run in six innings at PNC Park. Moyer missed last season after undergoing Tommy John surgery, which he only intended to have in order to throw batting practice to his children. But he felt so good while rehabbing, he opted to make a comeback. Moyer needs two strikeouts to match Luis Tiant for 36th all time, with 2,416.

• Left fielder Carlos Gonzalez produced his first two homers of the season Tuesday at Pittsburgh, off Kevin Correia and Tony Watson. Gonzalez had been weakened by a battle with strep throat that caused him to miss three games. He is just starting to regain his strength.


Chris Humphreys/US Presswire
Marco Scutaro has needed to readjust to second base after primarily playing shortstop with the Red Sox in recent seasons.


• The Dec. 16 signing of former Minnesota Twin Michael Cuddyer to a three-year, $31.5 million contract marked the first time the organization had opened the purse strings for a major free-agent acquisition since 2000. That year, Colorado signed Mike Hampton and Denny Neagle. (The Hampton signing gave the Mets the compensatory draft pick they used to select David Wright 38th overall in June ’01). Cuddyer, who grew up with Wright in Norfolk, Va., has been the Rockies’ most productive hitter so far with a .303 average, two homers and 11 RBIs in 66 at-bats. A first-time All-Star last season in the American League, Cuddyer has taken over the right-field role held by Seth Smith and Ryan Spilborghs in 2011.

• The Rockies acquired Marco Scutaro from the Boston Red Sox on Jan. 21 for right-hander Clayton Mortensen. Scutaro started 102 games at shortstop and two games at second base last season, but is being asked to play the latter position with the Rockies. He initially looked shaky, but has progressed since the start of the season.

• Two-time reigning Gold Glove winner Troy Tulowitzki already has matched last season’s error total with six. On a wet day, he airmailed two throws for errors. Three days later, Tulowitzki then had a second two-error day. Teammate Jason Giambi played fielding highlights for Tulowitzki to try to settle the Rockies’ shaken shortstop. The six errors are one shy of Starlin Castro’s NL-leading total with the Chicago Cubs. Tulowitzki has this to fall back on: He is a lifetime .328 hitter with seven homers and 15 RBIs in 116 at-bats against the Mets.

• The Rockies are targeting 110 starts for 38-year-old Todd Helton at first base this season. Helton does not play day games after starting night games. Giambi is the primary alternative. Helton’s 1,318 RBIs are the most in Rockies franchise history. He and Wright are the only two active players who lead their organizations in most runs driven in. Helton and R.A. Dickey were baseball teammates at the University of Tennessee.

• Closer Rafael Betancourt is 6-for-6 in save conversions. Matt Belisle (1.23 ERA) is now the primary setup man. Rex Brothers (4.05 ERA) began the season in that role, but is now more likely to handle the seventh.

• Left-hander Drew Pomeranz was the centerpiece prospect returned in last July’s trade of Ubaldo Jimenez to the Cleveland Indians. The 23-year-old southpaw was the fifth overall pick in the 2010 draft, out of the University of Mississippi. The Mets then selected Matt Harvey seventh overall. With the Rockies not needing a fifth starter the first time through the rotation, Pomeranz began the season with a start with Double-A Tulsa to keep his innings count in check. Friday’s outing will mark his seventh career major league start.

Jeremy Guthrie was acquired at the start of spring training from the Baltimore Orioles for Jason Hammel and Matt Lindstrom.

• With center fielder Dexter Fowler struggling (.222), lefty-hitting Tyler Colvin has chipped away at some of his playing time. Colvin was acquired from the Cubs with infielder D.J. LeMahieu on Dec. 8 for Ian Stewart and Casey Weathers.

• Right-hander Juan Nicasio, whom the Mets will not face, is an inspirational story. He is coming back from a broken neck, which he suffered on a line drive off the bat of Washington’s Ian Desmond last Aug. 5.

• Defensive-oriented third baseman Chris Nelson is hitting .224.

Jorge De La Rosa, returning from Tommy John surgery, is due to pitch in an extended spring training game Friday.

Matchups

Schwinden vs. Rockies (career: never faced)

Gee vs. Rockies (career: never faced)

Santana vs. Rockies (career: 2-0, 0.00 ERA)
Troy Tulowitzki .429, 2 K, 7 PA
Todd Helton .333, 3 PA
Marco Scutaro .250, 1 RBI, 3 K, 12 PA
Carlos Gonzalez .250, 1 K, 4 PA
Jason Giambi .227, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1 BB, 7 K, 23 PA
Dexter Fowler .200, 2 BB, 3 K, 7 PA
Ramon Hernandez .190, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 4 K, 22 PA
Michael Cuddyer .000, 1 BB, 1 K, 3 PA

Pomeranz vs. Mets (career: never faced)

Guthrie vs. Mets (career: 0-2, 4.73 ERA)
David Wright .500, 2 RBI, 1 K, 6 PA
Scott Hairston .333, 3 PA
Ike Davis .333, 2 K, 3 PA
Daniel Murphy .000, 1 RBI, 3 PA
Ruben Tejada .000, 1 K, 3 PA

Moyer vs. Mets (career: 10-6, 3.94 ERA)
Daniel Murphy .500, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 6 PA
David Wright .415, 4 HR, 14 RBI, 1 BB, 3 K, 56 PA
Scott Hairston .000, 2 BB, 11 PA
Ike Davis .000, 1 BB, 3 PA

Last series results

Mets won, 2-1, at Coors Field, May 9-12, 2011 (AP game recaps)

Rockies 2, Mets 1: Chris Capuano was stellar on the mound and shoddy at the plate. Capuano (2-4) made one key mistake in 6 2/3 strong innings, hanging an 81 mph slider to Chris Iannetta, who broke a tie in the seventh inning with a low liner that just cleared the left-field fence. The pitcher's performance at the plate, though, left something to be desired. He struck out three times, including once with the bases loaded in the sixth. That's simply the way the night went for the Mets, who left 10 runners on base and dropped to 0-5 against Colorado this season including a four-game sweep at Citi Field last month. Once again, they struggled to come up with the timely hit. New York is 1-for-16 with runners in scoring position over the last two games.

Mets 4, Rockies 3: Mike Pelfrey hit a tiebreaking, two-run double and limited the Rockies to three solo homers. Ike Davis left in the fifth inning after he strained his left calf when he appeared to trip over third baseman David Wright's foot as the two closed in on a pop up by the Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki. Wright hung on to the ball near the mound for the second out of the fourth inning as Davis tumbled to the ground. Davis bounced up quickly but was limping noticeably. He remained in the game for the final out of the inning, then was replaced. The Mets had lost all five of their games to the Rockies this season but finally put together a couple of rallies against their new nemesis to counter home runs by Troy Tulowitzki, Seth Smith and Carlos Gonzalez. Despite the trio of long balls he served up, Pelfrey (3-3) allowed six hits over 6 2/3 innings and improved to 6-2 lifetime against the Rockies, who have lost seven of nine but remain atop the NL West. Pelfrey's outing was cut short by a nearly hour-long rain delay in the seventh inning.

Mets 9, Rockies 5: Carlos Beltran hit a career-high three homers and drove in six runs to help the Mets beat Ubaldo Jimenez in a game delayed more than two hours by rain. Beltran homered from both sides of the plate and reached all parts of the ballpark with his three two-run homers: straightaway center in the first, deep left in the seventh and into the right-field seats in the ninth. The switch-hitting outfielder became the eighth Mets player to hit three in a game, and first since Jose Reyes on Aug. 15, 2006, at Philadelphia. Reyes hit a two-run single in the fourth that chased Jimenez (0-3) and kept the Rockies' ace searching for his elusive first win of the season. He lasted just 3 2/3 innings in his shortest stint of the season, surrendering five runs and three hits while walking six. Relying on his curveball, Jon Niese (2-4) was solid for 6 1/3 innings while allowing solo homers to Jonathan Herrera and Todd Helton.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Bartolo Colon
WINS ERA SO IP
15 4.09 151 202
OTHER LEADERS
BAD. Murphy .289
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187