Mets vs. Reds: RHP Dillon Gee vs. RHP Johnny Cueto


New York Mets (67-74) vs. Cincinnati Reds (66-75)

RHP Dillon Gee (6-6, 3.81 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, .230 OAV) vs. RHP Johnny Cueto (16-8, 2.26 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, .195 OAV)

Saturday, September 6, 2014: 4:10 p.m. at Great American Ball Park

Peering at Gee’s statistics on the surface, his earned run average is curiously high for a pitcher whom opposing batters do not hit particularly well against. Wherein lies the trouble for the right-hander is in the home run ball. Having allowed 15 long balls through just 113 innings so far this season, a majority of the opposition’s runs come from the home run.

For his career, Gee has been a much better pitcher inside the anti-hitter ballpark he calls home at Citi Field. While his record is seven games above .500 on the road (21-14), opposed to .500 at home (18-18), his ERA skyrockets by more than a run (4.56 on the road, 3.29 at home). Curiously enough, all three of his complete games have come away from New York, despite his weaker body of work.

Back on April 5, Gee tossed 7.1 innings of three-run ball against the Redlegs. He would not personally get the win, but Ike Davis would hit a game-winning Grand Slam in the bottom of the ninth to give the Mets the decisive victory.

With the sun shining, Gee is a significantly better pitcher. In 35 career day starts, he has posted an 18-6 record with a 3.03 ERA. While his numbers may not be equivalent of his opposition’s, Gee has still proven to be a lethal starter in the daylight.

Here is the lineup he will face via the team’s Twitter account:

CF – Billy Hamilton (yet to face Gee)

C – Brayan Pena (yet to face Gee)

1B – Todd Frazier (1-for-4, 2 BB’s)

RF – Jay Bruce (1-for-6, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 K’s)

2B – Brandon Phillips (2-for-7, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 1 K)

3B – Kristopher Negron (yet to face Gee)

LF – Donald Lutz (yet to face Gee)

SS – Zack Cozart (0-for-6, 1 K)

P – Johnny Cueto (1-for-2)

* * *

With the precipitous downfall of the 2014 version of the Cincinnati Reds, Johnny Cueto has been the lone bright spot amongst a dark cloud. He has pitched so well he has earned himself the nickname “Johnny Beisbol,” a mock off the new Cleveland Browns back-up quarterback “Johnny Football.” To the Reds, Cueto represents one of the most dominant pitchers in franchise history. One they can hopefully secure long-term.

Where Cueto’s ERA currently sits, is the highest it has been all season. Of course, a 2.26 ERA is nothing to scoff at. The Dominican right-hander was hit a bit in August, possibly due to his innings total, which is already sitting at a lofty 207 as September rolls around.

Cueto was the starting pitcher against Gee back on April 5 when Ike Davis hit his first of two Grand Slams off the Reds this season. Like the story has been too often, the bullpen gave away a game Johnny should have won.

Throw out the one start back in 2009 against the Philadelphia Phillies (you know the one), and Cueto’s worst numbers come against the Mets in nearly every category. Against no other club that he has made two starts against has his WHIP been so high. While he is striking out the highest number of batters per 9/IP against any club he has ever faced at least twice, his 4.50 ERA in nine starts indicates it’s not all about the strikeouts.

Here is the lineup he will face via the team’s Twitter account:

CF – Juan Lagares (1-for-5, 1 BB, 1 K)

LF – Matt den Dekker (yet to face Cueto)

3B – David Wright (5-for-22, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 5 BB’s, 3 K’s)

1B – Lucas Duda (3-for-11, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 6 K’s)

C – Travis d’Arnaud (yet to face Cueto)

RF – Curtis Granderson (2-for-8, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 BB’s, 3 K’s)

2B – Dilson Herrera (yet to face Cueto)

SS – Wilmer Flores (yet to face Cueto)

P – Dillon Gee (0-for-3, 2 K’s)

Back to the red jerseys and hats, the Reds look to expel the evil green demon that possessed them on Friday night. For the second time this season, it’s Gee vs. Cueto, and this time it is Cincinnati at 4:10 p.m.