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May 4, 2024 9:29 am

Mets prospect Christian Scott to make MLB debut vs. Rays

New York Mets

After dropping the series opener against the Tampa Bay Rays, the New York Mets will look to rebound behind their top pitching prospect on Saturday night in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Christian Scott will make his major league debut as the starter for the Mets, and though he’ll be dressed in enemy colors, he’ll have plenty of support. The 24-year-old right-hander pitched at the University of Florida and hails from Coconut Creek, nearly four hours from the Tampa Bay area.

Scott estimates a crowd of nearly 50 friends and family will be on hand for the big day.

“It means a lot,” he said. “I’ve worked really hard for this opportunity. I’m really grateful to be here. I just want to go out there and compete at a high level. This has always been my dream. So I’m just trying to put one foot in front of the other, compete every time I get the ball and see what happens after that. Just control the controllables.”

Scott, a fifth-round pick in the 2021 draft, has gone 3-0 with a 3.20 ERA and 36 strikeouts in 25 1/3 innings this season with New York’s Triple-A affiliate in Syracuse.

“I told him, ‘Just go out there and be yourself. Don’t try to do too much. Keep doing what you’re doing,'” Mets manager Carlos Mendoza said.

New York will look to bounce back after dropping a 10-8 decision to the Rays on Friday, its eighth loss in the past 12 games. The Mets held a 3-0 lead before the Rays scored nine consecutive runs.

The Mets broke out on offense for a second straight game. They scored seven in a win against the Chicago Cubs on Thursday.

Half of Friday’s scoring came off the bat of third baseman Brett Baty, who hit a three-run homer in the second inning and a solo shot in the ninth.

The Rays, meanwhile, will eye consecutive victories for the first time since a three-game winning streak from April 9-12. A victory also would give Tampa Bay its first series win since the team took two of three games from the San Francisco Giants from April 12-14.

Friday’s offensive outburst nearly doubled the Rays’ combined scoring output from their previous four games. They scored just six runs while going 1-3 in that stretch.

“Arguably our best hitting of the season there, so encouraged by that,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said. “We needed every bit of it.”

The Rays went 6-for-8 with runners in scoring position through the first three innings Friday.

Yandy Diaz and Randy Arozarena each ended a drought of four games without a hit. Diaz, batting leadoff, went 2-for-5 with a pair of RBIs. Arozarena, in the second spot, was 1-for-2 with a home run and drew three walks.

“Everyone’s been working hard,” Arozarena said through an interpreter. “Everyone’s been trying to get those results, and they hadn’t been happening. But I think with everyone’s hard work, we can keep it going from here on forward.”

Zack Littell (1-2, 3.27 ERA) will be on the mound for Tampa Bay on Saturday. The right-hander has gone three straight starts (17 2/3 innings) without giving up a walk. Littell is 0-1 with a 1.29 ERA in six career relief appearances against the Mets. He has allowed one run on four hits while striking out eight in seven innings.

–Field Level Media

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