On Sunday afternoon, Javier Baez explained how the “thumbs down” sign some New York Mets players flashed at one another after hits was their way of booing back at fans.
Baez will probably get his first chance to hear how Mets fans feel about being booed Tuesday afternoon by playing in a game that began 142 days earlier, when Baez was a member of the Chicago Cubs.
A strange summer for the Mets will take another odd turn Tuesday afternoon and evening, when New York is scheduled to host the Miami Marlins in what amounts to a unique doubleheader between the National League East rivals.
The first game, scheduled for 1:10 p.m. ET, will be the completion of a nine-inning game that was suspended due to rain with one out in the top of the first on April 11. The nightcap will be a seven-inning game.
Taijuan Walker (7-9, 3.82 ERA) is expected to resume the first game for the Mets in relief of Marcus Stroman. Trevor Williams (4-2, 4.54 ERA) will start the second game. Right-handers Edward Cabrera (0-0, 4.26 ERA) and Elieser Hernandez (1-1, 3.63 ERA) are expected to pitch in some order for the Marlins.
Both teams were off after earning series wins at home Sunday afternoon, when the Mets beat the Washington Nationals 9-4, and the Marlins edged the Cincinnati Reds 2-1.
The series win was just the fourth since the All-Star Break for the Mets, who finished the first half with a 3 1/2-game lead in the National League East but have gone 16-27 since then to fall into third place, 7 1/2 games behind the Atlanta Braves.
On Sunday, Baez — who joined the Mets via a trade from the Cubs on July 30 — said he and his teammates wanted to give fans an idea of what it was like to get booed. Francisco Lindor and Kevin Pillar also flashed the “thumbs down” sign Sunday.
“I want them to know that we’re going to do the same thing to let them know how it feels,” Baez said.
In a statement issued Sunday night, team president Sandy Alderson said, “These comments, and any gestures by him or other players with a similar intent, are totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”
Baez is a candidate to man third base during the resumption in place of Luis Guillorme who started at the hot corner on April 11, but he’s now on the injured list with a left hamstring strain. Stroman will not pitch after tossing six innings and earning the win against the Nationals Saturday night.
Five of the Marlins’ starters on April 11 are no longer with the team, including “starting” pitcher John Curtiss, who never threw a pitch that afternoon after heavy rains arrived and forced the game to be suspended after a delay of two hours and 10 minutes.
“The field got out of hand quick,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said April 11. “It’s obviously one of those (situations) that probably if everybody had to start over again, they wouldn’t start at all.”
Curtiss was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers on July 30 and is on the injured list with a torn UCL in his right elbow. Starting outfielders Corey Dickerson, Starling Marte and Adam Duvall were also traded while catcher Chad Wallach is now with the Los Angeles Angels.
Somebody will have to pinch-run for Dickerson, who was on first when the teams were waved off the field with a 2-0 count on Jesus Aguilar.
–Field Level Media