As the 2017 New York Mets season is now in full circle, the battle for the fifth spot in the Mets rotation is still up in the air. With Steven Matz out for at least another week, Robert Gsellman and Zack Wheeler are currently the two candidates fighting for that coveted fifth rotation spot, but neither made a good case in his first start.
Wheeler, who came into the season holding Matz’s number-four spot in the rotation, had a pitiful outing against the Miami Marlins on Friday, pitching four innings and allowing five runs on six hits, ending the day with an ERA of 11.25. An outing like that is just simply unacceptable, even discounting the fact that this was his first major-league start since 2014. He looked completely lost during the entire outing, and it showed on the scoreboard as the Marlins won the game, 7-1.
However, Gsellman didn’t help his case any more than Wheeler did, as he himself had a poor outing against the Marlins on Saturday. In five innings, Gsellman allowed three runs on six hits, including a Marcell Ozuna home run, giving him an ERA of 4.50. During that outing, Gsellman looked like he had no control whatsoever, using the same pitches on right-handed hitters, which Ozuna ultimately figured out and took it deep.
Although both pitchers had terrible outings, Gsellman has the upper hand from what it looks like. If Gsellman was able to mix up his arsenal in Saturday’s game, he would’ve had a much better result against that Marlins team. For now, though, it’s way too early to tell which of the two actually deserves the last spot in the Mets rotation.