Updated by HoJo At 2:30 PM
A day after Mets prospect Zack Wheeler rebounded with a solid performance for Las Vegas, Mike Puma of the New York Post reports that the Mets are considering a variety of factors in setting a date for Zack Wheeler’s major league debut and he could arrive on the next homestand.
The Mets next homestand is the target, with the organization sensitive to putting Wheeler in an optimum position to succeed for his debut. That would mean a strong preference to pitching Wheeler against the struggling Cubs on the weekend of June 14-16 instead of against the NL Central leading Cardinals in the previous series. Team brass also isn’t high on the idea of having Wheeler make his major league debut in Atlanta – despite the fact the Mets will need another starter for a scheduled doubleheader on June 18 – because of the proximity to Wheeler’s hometown of Dallas, Ga. The Mets believe Wheeler will have enough jitters pitching in the majors for the first time and won’t need the added pressure of pitching in front of a large contingent from his hometown.
After two years of waiting for Wheeler to arrive, it looks like the wait is finally over. Puma says that the Super 2 cutoff is still being monitored and it is factoring in the decision regardless of what the team says publicly. It’s always about the money with the Mets and that hasn’t changed yet.
I’m looking forward to seeing Wheeler team up with Matt Harvey and Jon Niese for the rest of this season. The hope is that all three will form the core that the Mets can build around in future seasons.
Original Post 12:30 AM
Well, well, well… that’s how you go out there and inspire everyone to believe in you again, Mr. Zack Wheeler. You go out there and toss six innings of one-run ball, allow only three hits and one walk, then strike out six as the cherry on top of the cake. I was a little worried about Wheeler before this game started, ranging from his mechanics to whether he was going to run into more command issues.
Whether it was mechanics, mental, or just plain rust – Wheeler responded to doubters in a big way. He gave up his only run in the second inning when he gave up a single, induced two ground outs, and then allowed a two-out RBI single to Carter Jurica. After that, Wheeler turned on the cruise control switch and pitched the next four innings while allowing only one hit (to Jurica once again) and recording all six of his punchouts.
Wheeler was afforded a lead after the top of the third when he scored a run himself on a two-run homer from Kirk Nieuwenhuis. I personally think Wheeler turned it up a notch in this game once he was given that lead because he was absolutely dominant moving forward.
He was removed after 95 pitches – 62 of them being strikes. His fastball sat between 92-96 MPH on the evening. With the Super Two date basically becoming a non-issue now, once Wheeler strings together a few starts like this, expect him in Flushing. It’s imminent.
So I’ll leave you all with his final line for emphasis: 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, 1 ER, 6 K, 62:33 Strike/Ball Ratio.