NEW YORK -- A pair of young pitchers coming off pivotal moments in their development will square off Thursday night when the New York Mets host the New York Yankees in the finale of the Subway Series at Citi Field.
Mets left-hander Steven Matz (2-6, 5.54 ERA) is scheduled to oppose Yankees right-hander Luis Severino (9-5, 3.32). The Yankees will be going for a sweep of the four-game season series after earning a 5-3 victory Wednesday night.
Matz and Severino lost their previous starts, albeit in wholly different fashions. Matz had one of his best starts during a nearly two-month winless stretch Saturday, when he gave up two runs over 5 2/3 innings as the Mets fell to the Phillies 3-1 in Philadelphia.
It was only the second time in his past eight starts -- a stretch in which he is 0-5 with a 7.68 ERA -- that Matz allowed two runs or fewer. Mets manager Terry Collins said Wednesday he believed the solid start provided proof to the 26-year-old that he can pitch when he is at less than 100 percent.
Matz underwent Tommy John surgery in 2010, had bone spurs removed from his left elbow last October and didn't debut this season until June 10 because of left elbow inflammation.
"You're talking about a guy (who has) had (multiple) elbow operations -- you're never going to be 100 percent," Collins said. "Out of 30-something starts, you're not going to feel good a majority of the time. You've got to learn how to get through it. And I think his last start really did that."
Severino, who made his first All-Star team this season, endured the worst start of his career Saturday. He allowed 10 runs (eight earned) on eight hits over 4 1/3 innings as the Yankees fell to the Boston Red Sox 10-5 at Yankee Stadium. The 23-year-old entered Saturday having allowed just eight runs (six earned) in his previous six starts, a stretch in which he went 4-0 with a 1.36 ERA.
"He made some mistakes," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said following the loss. "He's been so good and executing so well, and we haven't seen that for a while. But it just shows that he's human."
Matz is 1-1 with a 5.25 ERA in two career starts against the Yankees. Severino earned the win in his lone previous appearance against the Mets on Aug. 3, 2016, when he allowed an unearned run and one hit over 4 1/3 innings of relief in the Yankees' 9-5 victory.
The Yankees, who won the first two contests of the four-game, two-stadium series Monday and Tuesday in the Bronx, are looking for the third Subway Series season sweep in the 21-year history of the interleague rivalry. The Mets won all four games in 2013, and the Yankees won all six in 2003.
Aaron Judge had an up-and-down game for the Yankees on Wednesday at Citi Field. He hit his American League-leading 37th homer but also struck out in a 33rd consecutive game, setting a single-season record for position players.