Never-Say-Die Mets Motor On Without Reyes, Go For 3rd Straight Win
NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) – The Mets’ back-and-forth, up-and-down season rumbles on.
Just when you thought New York was down for the count, late-game dramatics against one of the best bullpens in baseball have the Mets back above .500.
Jason Bay looks to continue his production and help the Mets beat the San Diego Padres for a third straight meeting Wednesday night.
New York (58-57) has shifted its momentum after entering this four-game set losing six of seven. The Mets opened this series by erasing a four-run, eighth-inning deficit on Lucas Duda’s two-run walkoff single in Monday’s 9-8 win over the Padres (51-66). They followed that with another rally Tuesday, using a three-run eighth capped by a bases-loaded walk to Ruben Tejada for a 5-4 win.
The dramatic victories also came without Jose Reyes (hamstring) and Daniel Murphy (knee), who went on the disabled list Monday.
The Mets have scored eight runs in 3 1-3 innings against San Diego’s bullpen, which is among the best in baseball with a 2.95 ERA.
“This team is not going to give up. They’re going to play until the game is over,” Mets manager Terry Collins said.
Bay appears to be evolving from an offensive liability into one of New York’s top offensive threats. He’s batting .439 with three homers, nine RBIs and six walks during an 11-game hitting streak after compiling a .223 average with six homers and 32 RBIs prior to that stretch.
He’s hitting .370 with six doubles, a triple and five homers off Aaron Harang, Wednesday’s scheduled starter.
Angel Pagan has taken a liking to his new leadoff role in place of Reyes, connecting for solo homers in each of the first two games of this series.
“We like to fight to the end. That’s the team that we are,” said Pagan, who has six hits in four games.
Knuckleballer R.A. Dickey (5-10, 3.72 ERA) faces the Padres for the first time. He could use some support as he tries to win for just the second time this season at Citi Field.
He’s 1-7 with a 4.09 ERA in 12 home starts, and 0-2 with a 3.24 ERA in his last five there while being backed by nine total runs.
Poor support was an issue again Friday, as the right-hander allowed two runs in seven innings of a 4-1 home defeat to Atlanta.
Harang (10-3, 3.91), meanwhile, will try to remain unbeaten on the road by earning his first victory against the Mets in over four years.
The veteran right-hander is 5-0 with a 4.63 ERA in eight away starts, winning each of his last three despite a 6.06 ERA.
Harang was backed by 10 runs Friday, when he gave up four and a season-high 13 hits in five innings of a 15-5 win at Pittsburgh.
“Sometimes, that’s how it works,” Harang said.
He’s lost three straight starts against New York while with Cincinnati, compiling a 7.90 ERA since winning at Shea Stadium on July 13, 2007.
It’s unclear if San Diego will have Orlando Hudson available for this game after he left Tuesday’s contest with a strained right groin. He had an RBI double and scored prior to exiting, and is hitting .303 with 10 doubles and 17 RBIs in 30 meetings with the Mets.
Will the Mets get it done tonight? Sound off in the comments below…
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