5 things to watch as Mets and Giants play three-game set in San Francisco

Here are five things to watch as the Mets and Giants play a three-game series in San Francisco starting on Monday night...

Francisco Lindor is continuing to heat up

Lindor is coming off a strong series in Los Angeles, where he went 5-for-12 while blasting a decisive two-run homer on Friday, notched two hits on Saturday, and added another knock on Sunday.

As Lindor has started to break out, he has looked a lot more comfortable from the left side of the plate -- a nice development after how poorly he started off the season from that side.

Lindor has been heating up for a while, as evidenced by the fact that he has reached base safely in 13 consecutive games.

During that span, he has raised his OPS roughly .350 points.

Lindor still has a bit to go before his numbers get back to where they normally are, but he's well on his way.

Reed Garrett's dominance has been real

Garrett has come out of nowhere for the Mets in his age-31 season.

In 10.2 innings over six scoreless appearances, he has allowed just five hits, walked three, and struck out a whopping 21 batters -- good for a strikeout rate of 17.7 per nine.

Garrett, whose five-pitch mix (slider, sweeper, four-seam fastball, two-seam fastball, and split-finger) has been lethal, had only 44.1 innings of big league experience -- and a 7.11 ERA -- spread over five seasons and four teams before this year.

So it's possible something has simply clicked for him. And the advanced numbers back that up.

One of the changes Garrett made revolves around his pitch usage, with him now relying on his slider and sweeper more often than his fastballs.

Nearly all of Garrett's metrics via Baseball Savant are elite, including his xERA, xBA, whiff percentage, strikeout rate, and barrel percentage. He's also well above average when it comes to average exit velocity and chase rate.

Luis Severino looks to keep rolling

Severino wasn't effective in his first Mets start, but it felt at the time that it was an aberration.

In that game, he allowed 11 hits, but many were of the soft variety. And the fact that he walked none and struck out six (and that his stuff was good) seemed to portend that good things were coming. And they have.

Apr 17, 2024; New York City, New York, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Luis Severino (40) follows through on a pitch against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the first inning at Citi Field.

In three starts since, Severino has a 1.13 ERA. He has allowed four runs (two earned) in 16 innings while walking nine and striking out 15.

During that span, batters are slashing a measly .164/.281/.273 against him.

Severino will get the ball for the second game of the series in San Francisco.

2024 Starling Marte looks like the 2022 version

The Mets did the prudent thing this offseason, adding a starting-caliber outfielder (Harrison Bader) to the mix with Marte's health still in question.

Marte, recovering from double groin surgery in 2023, was never himself. And he didn't resemble the guy who was one of the Mets' most important players in 2022.

This season, at least so far, Marte looks like the version the Mets got in 2022.

In 94 plate appearances over 21 games, he is slashing .276/.323/.448 with four homers and three doubles. He has also swiped five bases, and has looked very comfortable in right field.

Marte maintaining his 2022 form would be enormous for the Mets' lineup -- especially with Francisco Alvarez out until at least June.

Blake Snell has struggled

Snell signed late, and he has gotten hit around in his first three starts for the Giants.

In 11.2 innings, he has allowed 15 runs on 18 hits while walking five and striking out 12.

He has pitched past the fourth inning just once, with outings of 3.0, 4.0, and 4.2 innings on his ledger so far.

Snell gets the start in the series finale against Sean Manaea on Wednesday afternoon.