New York Mets need innings from Zack Wheeler tonight

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 16: Zack Wheeler(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 16: Zack Wheeler(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

The New York Mets bullpen continues to fail the team at nearly every turn. Tonight, Zack Wheeler can help with a long, strong outing.

Thursday night, the New York Mets fell victim to their own bullpen once again. Mickey Callaway felt he needed to take Seth Lugo out of the game after four scoreless innings. The pen proceeded to allow five runs over the next five innings on the way to a 5-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs. Once again, the bullpen failed to pick up the starting pitcher.

Friday night the Mets have another shot against the Cubs. They are going up against Tyler Chatwood, who has pitched to a 4.29 ERA against them in seven previous starts. Chatwood has only averaged a little over five innings per start against New York, so he is a guy they can get to. However, so is the Mets pen.

That includes pitchers that have been reliable in the past. Hansel Robles has pitched poorly. Jerry Blevins has not been a guy that anyone can count on. The list goes on and on. The bullpen has for the most part been suspect. They need to get off the deck tonight and win a ball game. That puts a lot of pressure on tonight’s starter, Zack Wheeler.

The Mets need a long outing out of Wheeler tonight. There are no two ways about it, he needs to go deep into the game. He is one of the team’s starters they have counted on since he entered the organization. Now that Wheeler is healthy he needs to become that pitcher on a consistent basis.

Wheeler has shown that he has it in him. In his first start of the year, he gave up one run over seven innings, striking out seven in a win over the Miami Marlins. He pitched six innings of one run ball against the Reds earlier this month in a no-decision. We can’t put it on Wheeler when the Mets don’t hit. That problem has been a thorn in the side of every starter on this team at one time or another.

Those are examples of good Zack. We have seen bad Zack in 2018 as well. He gave up eight earned runs over six innings in a loss to the Rockies. That wasn’t even the worst. He couldn’t get out of four innings, giving up six in a loss to the Toronto Blue Jays. It is safe to say that bad Zack has been very bad.

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This is the mark of a pitcher that is talented but not realizing the potential expected of him. He is one of the big five. They are all still around except for Matt Harvey. Wheeler is healthy so it is time for him to take that next step. A great pitcher knows when his team needs a great outing from him. That pitcher can take a team on his back and put in a long outing, giving the bullpen a rest.

The Mets need that tonight from Zack Wheeler.