He’s here!!!!!! Zack Wheeler is set to make one of the most anticipated debuts in Mets history tomorrow against the Atlanta Braves. You can’t help but to be excited. He will follow Mets ace and local superhero, Matt Harvey. The stage could not have been set any better. The Mets are coming off a walk off home run victory on Father’s Day from unlikely candidate Kirk Nieuwenhuis. Hopefully this will get him off the snide. His three run bash put the exclamation point on a four run ninth started by a lead off homer from Marlon Byrd. You can’t say enough about the play they are getting out of Byrd. He is now tied with Lucas Duda with a team high eleven home runs on the season. His 32 RBIs rank him third on the squad and he has been one of their only off-season gambles that has paid off. With Sandy’s promise to shake things up within the next six months, he has to be catching the attention of many potential suitors. It is more than likely that the Byrd will be flying for parts unknown soon. For now though, he is headed to Atlanta with a bunch of other pumped up Mets.
“You don’t forget about this. You build off of it, remember how much fun it is coming in the clubhouse, the celebration” Byrd said. “That plane ride’s going to be nice and relaxing, so you try to build off it and keep winning games.”
The best part about the flight is that Zack Wheeler will be waiting on the other end of this trip to greet his new teammates. He is the freaking pot of gold at the end of the rainbow everyone has been waiting for. The 23 year old is set to make his first start Tuesday night after Harvey devours the Braves bats during the day game of the double-header. This is it. This is the 1-2 punch Mets coaches, players, and fans have been clamoring for ever since he was traded to the Mets in the Carlos Beltran deal of 2011. Since then he has been torching the minor leagues with his two and four seam 95 to 97 mph heater and his mid to high 70’s breaking ball. He also adds a slider and change-up bringing his arsenal of pitches up to 5. He is a workhorse who has dominated each level of hitting he has faced. He has amassed a total of 420 strikeouts in 390 innings pitched over his four seasons in the minors. He was 4-2 with a 3.93 ERA and 73 Ks in Vegas. Now it’s time for the big boy bats. He has been anointed as “ready” by 51’s manager and Mets World Series ring holder, Wally Backman.
“The more that he pitches, the better he’s going to become. And he’s going to be fine.”
Growing up in the suburbs of the city of Atlanta, it is kismet that the youngster will take the hill for the first time as a major leaguer against the Braves. He is rumored to have a large local contingent coming to the game to cheer him on. He has an even larger fan base waiting patiently in the tri-state area to greet him when he arrives in Flushing. Electric. This was the catch phrase used throughout spring training to describe the ball when it leaves his hand. The Zack Attack officially takes the mound at 7:10 PM tomorrow night as the sun sets in the Georgian sky. The lights will surely be on at Turner Field but the hope is that Wheeler will be the one supplying the electricity to light up the scoreboard on this night. Harvey will deal and then Zack will wheel. In Talladega Nights, Ricky Bobby remarked, “Shake and bake are two verbs, they go good together, they rhyme…” The Mets have their own special two verbs now. Wheeling and Dealing. Let’s get it done!
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