Mets' Joey Lucchesi says he's building confidence after recent stretch

·2 min read
Lucchesi in road grays in SD
Lucchesi in road grays in SD

The Mets’ offense has cooled down as the weather got warmer in San Diego. They had just five baserunners on Friday after having just six hits on Thursday against the Padres.

But a bright spot for New York has been Joey Lucchesi’s recent output, despite him taking the loss on Friday.

In his last five outings, Lucchesi has allowed six earned runs in 17.1 innings (3.12 ERA) – four of those runs came in one outing. He owns a 1.74 ERA in his last three appearances (two earned runs/10.3 innings).

“I’ve been working really hard in between my starts, and of course I changed my mental aspect of the game,” Lucchesi said. “My numbers were really bad and it’s hard to ignore that – some people get caught in that, but I just told myself to focus on this game, one at a time, super simplifying everything. Each pitch is a new pitch, reset, and that’s how I’m just going about everything, just day by day, and I think it’s helping a lot. In between starts, I’m just learning and getting better. That’s where I feel like I’m really improving.”

"It's huge for us that Lucchesi's doing this. We had the unfortunate start the other day from [David] Peterson. ... Resting the bullpen, that's the value that Lucchesi gave us tonight and has been giving the way he has been throwing the last few outings," said manager Luis Rojas.

Lucchesi’s start on Friday started rough, as he allowed a solo homer to Manny Machado in the first, but that was the only run he allowed in his season-high 4.2 innings of work.

And holding that lineup to just one run boosted his confidence even more.

“I feel like I had good stuff, but one bad pitch to Manny. I felt like I locked it down a little bit after that. That’s a good lineup, and just knowing I kept it to one run as long as I could felt good, because that’s a good lineup.”

Lucchesi has notably tweaked his mechanics in his windup, which he admitted he wasn’t comfortable with at first. But he knows it’s helped.

“I feel like it’s helped me out a lot. Minimize and simplify everything. My teammates and coaches were just telling me I was doing too much, and it didn’t make sense, because I didn’t wanna remove stuff. I didn’t change, I just subtracted, so I’m still doing the same stuff. I added a couple pitches, and I feel like I’m headed where I need to be.”