Breaking down the Mets-Yankees Subway Series matchups

In the first four months of the season, the Yankees and Mets were two of the best teams in baseball – the Yanks still holding that title with their 66-31 record.

Tuesday comes the first collision courseand maybe a preview of what might be possible in October if both teams mind business in their respective leagues. It’s only a two-game run at Citi Field before they meet at Yankee Stadium for two more in August, but it will be a highly anticipated showdown nonetheless.

The Mets won the season series last year, taking two of three in the Bronx on July 4 weekend before doing the same in Queens on September 11 weekend. The series finale at Citi Field included fireworks, coming from the Mets believing the Yankees may have whistled from their dugout to swing the pitches. The pews eventually cleared, but only words were exchanged.

Here’s a look at how the teams compete this week:


Get all the latest live, local coverage from The New York Post as the Yankees and Mets square off for Game 1 of the 2022 Subway Series.


On the plate

Get down to basics

While the Mets offense has been in a funk lately, highlighting one of their areas of need ahead of the trade deadline, both teams are among the best clubs in MLB in terms of putting on the base. The Yankees are second in on-base percentage at .332 while the Mets are sixth at .324 — though they get those numbers in different ways. The Yankees supplement their high power by leading the steps, while the Mets rely on their contact-oriented offensive approach, hitting less but with less hard contact.

Edge: Same

Giancarlo Stanton, Starling Marte
Giancarlo Stanton, Starling Marte
Getty (2)

Power

This category is not really a competition because the Yankees blow most teams in the league with their power. Behind Aaron Judge’s pursuit of 60 home runs (he currently has 37), fellow thumpers Giancarlo Stanton (24) and Anthony Rizzo (22), a resurgent Gleyber Torres (15) and a surprising Matt Carpenter (14), the Yankees lead MLB with 165 homers. Pete Alonso (25) packs a lot of punch on his own, but aside from Francisco Lindor (16) and the occasional hot streak from Eduardo Escobar (11), the Mets haven’t gotten much power from the rest of their training.

Edge: Yankees

On the basic paths

The Yankees have improved a lot in this area compared to last year, encountering fewer on-base outs and also becoming a constant threat to steal bases even without a certified speed threat. Their 65 hits were tied for third in MLB on Monday, with Isiah Kiner-Falefa (14) leading. Starling Marte (12) and Lindor (10) accounted for the bulk of Mets steals, with the rest of the team responsible for just 11. The Yankees (-2.6) and Mets (-2, 9) scored the same on FanGraphs baserunning. metric (BsR).

Edge: Yankees

In the field

Infield: Another area where the Yankees have made major improvements this season. Among their interior unit, they have a player in the top six for defensive runs recorded (per Fielding Bible) at each position – led by third baseman Josh Donaldson (10 DRS) – plus Jose Trevino leading all catchers with 15 DRS. Overall, their infield has racked up 27 DRS, trailing only the Cardinals (42). Versatile Luis Guillorme is the Mets’ top defenseman, though Statcast’s Outs Above Average also ranks Lindor among the best shortstops in the game.

Jose Trevino
Jose Trevino
USA TODAY Sports

Edge: Yankees

Outfield

Brandon Nimmo turned into one of the best center backs in the game to anchor the Mets outfield. Jeff McNeil was also above par in left field, sharing it with Mark Canha, and Marte was strong in right field. The judge’s move to center field has worked well for the Yankees, both improving their defense and allowing them greater lineup flexibility.

Edge: Dishes

Bench

Carpenter is transitioning from a bench player to an everyday player, but either way, he’s provided the Yankees with better depth since signing in May. Plus, with their roster remaining mostly healthy, they usually have a starter on the bench every night to give them another weapon late in games. Guillorme has been invaluable — and, like Carpenter, played an even bigger role — but the Mets’ bench isn’t quite as powerful, although the recent addition of Daniel Vogelbach should help against right-handers.

Edge: Yankees

On the mound

Spin

The Mets are lined up nicely for this series, ready to deploy their top two (healthy) starters in Taijuan Walker on Tuesday and Max Scherzer on Wednesday. Walker has been a consistent force at the top of the rotation, especially with injuries to Scherzer and Jacob deGrom, and Scherzer has returned to action since leaving IL. Jordan Montgomery, in the midst of another strong season, will start on Tuesday with Domingo German, who was roughed up when he returned from IL on Thursday, in play for Wednesday if he gets another start.

Edge: Dishes

Max Scherzer
Max Scherzer
Corey Sipkin for the NY POST

bullpen

Both teams will likely be in the market to add at least one reliever before the trade deadline, but the need is more pressing for the Mets even though the Yankees just took a big hit with the loss of Michael King (broken elbow ). Edwin Diaz and Clay Holmes have both been dominant irons — Diaz struck out 77 of 151 batters he’s faced — but the Yankees have a bit more depth beyond Holmes in Wandy Peralta, Lucas Luetge, Albert Abreu and Ron Marinaccio. Adam Ottavino was a solid prep for Diaz, but inconsistency from Seth Lugo and Drew Smith hurt the Mets.

Edge: Yankees

Administrator

Aaron Boone is back for his fifth year on the Subway series while Buck Showalter will experience it for the first time – interleague play wasn’t yet a thing when he had Boone’s job. Both men are known for their even temperament, with Showalter also displaying his extensive knowledge of the rulebook during his freshman year at Queens.

Edge: Same

Intangible assets

The Yankees haven’t lost much this year, but come into the series having lost eight of their last 13 games. The Mets have also lost three of their last four and have the Braves gasping at the top of the NL East. Both teams will be looking for a shot in the arm to get back on track.

Edge: Same

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