Top stats to know: Orioles at Mets


The New York Mets, who have faltered after a 13-3 start, host the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday Night Baseball.

We take a look at the key storylines for the game (7 p.m. ET, ESPN and WatchESPN) below.

The Mets’ 13-3 record after 16 games matched the 1986 team -- which won the World Series -- for the franchise’s best start at that point of a season. Since then, the Mets have won four of 11 games as their runs per game has fallen from 4.6 to 2.8.

The middle of the Mets’ infield has struggled defensively this year. Their shortstops and second basemen have combined for minus-6 defensive runs saved, tied for second-to-last in the major leagues, and have a .945 fielding percentage, worst in baseball. Only the Texas Rangers (minus-10) have fewer defensive runs saved by middle infielders this season.

Mets’ deGrom hopes to end recent slide

Last season, Jacob deGrom posted a 2.69 ERA, second-best by a Mets pitcher in his first season in franchise history (minimum 100 innings pitched). Only Dwight Gooden (2.60 in 1984) has had a better ERA in his debut season for the Mets.

In his first three starts this year, deGrom allowed a total of two runs. In his two most recent starts, he has struggled.

Hitters aren’t chasing his pitches lately, and he is getting swinging strikes at a lower rate. That has resulted in deGrom's walk rate jumping from 3.8 percent in his first three starts to 8.3 percent in his last two starts.

Left-handers have owned deGrom this season. They are hitting .379 with an OPS of .965 (compared with .175 and .476 for right-handers).

Orioles’ Jimenez a surprise

Ubaldo Jimenez has allowed zero earned runs in three of his four starts this season (including a 3 2/3-inning outing against the Red Sox on April 17 in which he was ejected).

There was a line of thinking that Jimenez might be the odd man out of the Orioles’ rotation if Kevin Gausman were to become a full-time starter. Jimenez actually has posted the best ERA of any Orioles starter this season.

Jimenez has been relying on his fastball much more this season compared with last year, using it 66 percent of the time (59 percent last year). He is allowing a .160 batting average and an OPS of .483 against the pitch; last year, those numbers were .232 and .741.

Jimenez has always been good against left-handers, allowing a .237 batting average in his career. But he’s taken it to another level this year, allowing a major league-best .107 average (minimum 30 left-handed batters faced).