By John Schweibacher
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The Mets continue to struggle on their homestand, and after dropping two of three to both the Dodgers and Diamondbacks and losing the opener of their series with the Pirates, the Mets fired hitting coach Dave Hudgens and released reliever Jose Valverde.

The Mets’ continuing struggles at the plate have spurred conversation about bringing in the fences at Citi Field for a second time in the short history of the Mets’ new ballpark.

However, the Mets’ offense as a team has not been better since the fences were brought in following the 2011 season. This year’s totals are through Monday’s game.


AVG     R     HR

2009             .274    343   49

2010             .255    374   63

2011             .262    328    50

2012             .242    287   67

2013             .219    268   59

2014             .222     83    17


While the Mets’ home-runs-per-game total has gone up to 0.80 per game from 0.66 per game with the fences in the last two-plus seasons, the club’s runs-per-game total has dipped from 4.14 to 3.38 and its overall batting averages at Citi Field has dropped from .264 to .229 with the new dimensions.

Valverde was released after blowing the save and taking the loss Monday. Valverde’s ex-teammate Kyle Farnswoth was released earlier this month, just days after recording a save against the Yankees in his final Mets outing.

Farnsworth joined a list of 10 other Mets relievers who registered a save in their final appearance for the Mets.

5/12/14 at NYY: Kyle Farnsworth

9/29/13 vs. Mil: Frank Francisco

7/08/11 at SF: Francisco Rodriguez

9/28/96 vs. Phi: Derek Wallace

10/2/92 vs. Pit: Barry Jones

10/1/83 vs. Mtl: Carlos Diaz

5/25/81 vs. Phi: Jeff Reardon

9/28/79 at  Stl: Andy Hassler

10/2/77 at  Stl: Rick Baldwin

9/18/73 at  Pit: Buzz Capra

10/1/69 at  Chi: Bob Johnson

Anthony Recker went 4-for-4 in the Mets’ 4-2 win over Arizona in the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader split with Arizona.

Recker is the 17th different Mets starting catcher to have a four-hit game. Only four times in club history has a Mets starting catcher had a five-hit game.

7/4/85 at Atl: Gary Carter

4/14/00  at Pit: Mike Piazza

4/7/04  at Atl: Mike Piazza

5/1/11  at Phi: Ronny Paulino

Jenrry Mejia pitched in both ends of Sunday’s doubleheader against the Diamondbacks. Mejia took the loss after allowing an unearned run in the opener and closed out the nightcap with his third save of the season.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the last Mets reliever to record a loss and a save in a doubleheader was Jesse Orosco back on August 19, 1984.

Orosco blew the save in the opener of the twin bill that day at Candlestick Park, allowing a two-run, game-winning home run to Brad Wellman in the bottom of the ninth in the 7-6 loss.

The Mets won the second game, 4-2, with Orosco pitching a perfect ninth inning to record the save.

The Mets scored three runs off Zack Greinke and added two more against the Dodgers’ bullpen in their 5-3 win against Los Angeles to salvage the final game of their three-game series last week, ending Greinke’s record streak of 21 starts without allowing more than two runs, which was five games longer than any other streak of that kind in major-league history.

Three Mets pitchers in club history have had streaks of 13 starts without allowing more than two runs.

· Johan Santana: 9/1/2008 though 5/11/2009

· Dwight Gooden: 8/31/1985 through 5/6/1986

· Tom Seaver: 7/17/1971 through 9/16/1971

Santana’s streak ended in a 9-6 win over the Giants in San Francisco. Santana got the win despite allowing six runs (four earned) in seven innings of work.

Gooden’s streak came to an end in a 3-2 loss to the Reds at Shea Stadium. Gooden was the losing pitcher, allowing a bases-loaded three-run single to Pete Rose in the second inning.

Seaver’s streak ended in a 3-0 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field. Seaver allowed three runs in seven innings, including a two-run home run by Ron Santo and a sacrifice fly by Billy Williams.

Eric Campbell has gone 8-for-24 with a home run and six runs batted in since being called up from Las Vegas. Terry Collins said last week that he could envision Campbell as a super-utility player, playing anywhere on the infield, in the outfield and even as the emergency catcher.

Three players in Mets history have appeared in at least one game at seven different positions on the diamond. Rod Kanehl, Joe McEwing and Lenny Harris appeared in games at all three outfield and all four infield spots as Mets. Harris and McEwing also appeared in games as designated hitters for the Mets.

Schwei’s Runs, Hits and Errors:

Runs: Rafael Montero — The Mets’ rookie struck out 10 while allowing just two hits in six innings on Sunday. The only other rookie to fan at least 10 batters while allowing three hits or fewer this season is the Yankees’ Masahiro Tanaka. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Gooden (twice in 1984) and Masato Yoshii (1998) are the only other Mets rookie pitchers to do so.

Hits: Anthony Recker — He became the first Mets catcher to record a four-hit game since Josh Thole in 2011.

Errors: 50-50 — The Mets are 22-28 through their first 50 games this season, just one win better than their 21-29 start last year.

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