Robert Stock might not be the solution to the Mets starting rotation problems, but he could be the answer for now.
In his first start for the Mets, Stock allowed just two runs — which came on a Manny Piña two-run shot to deep right-center — and four hits while striking out five batters in four innings in the Mets’ 5-0 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers.
“He made some really good adjustments after going the first time through their lineup, and I thought that just his command was not there from the get-go in the game, but he was able to find his command with his secondary pitch especially and then that made the fastball play above the zone or, throwing out by swing.” manager Luis Rojas said of Stock’s performance.
The 31-year-old journeyman was claimed by the Mets on June 22 after being released by the Cubs six days after his first career start — which was against the Mets. Before getting claimed, Stock got creative trying to stay sharp.
“When you get DFA’d and you have to stay at your hotel or apartment for a couple days, you get on Google maps, and find the nearest park where you can throw a baseball into a fence,” Stock said.
Stock received the call to join the team on Tuesday after Corey Oswalt hit the 10-day injured list with right knee inflammation.
“So, he did a really good adjustment, he’s shown really good stuff. I’m glad we got him right now because we’re in need of that type of length.” Rojas said.
Stock became the Mets’ 14th starting pitcher this season — the most in the majors. Despite the turmoil in their rotation, the Mets still boast a 2.96 ERA, which is the lowest in MLB for a starting rotation.
The Mets have a solid top-three rotation with Jacob deGrom, Taijuan Walker, and Marcus Stroman, but they have struggled to stay healthy beyond that.
If Stock turns in performances similar to Wednesday night and does not revert to his career 2-3 and 11.25 ERA self, can he be the glue that holds this rotation together? That is until the Mets get back their reinforcements.