Coming off a surprising three-game sweep over the Rays, the New York Mets (35-29) return to Citi Field to begin their weekend series with the Cincinnati Reds (35-27). Game time is 7:10 PM. The Reds have also won three in a row, with a sweep over their interstate rival Cleveland Indians. Friday night's game marks the beginning of a nine-game homestand for the Amazins, who have moved back into second place in the NL East, 4.5 games behind first-place Washington.
The Mets will look to continue the offensive production they saw Tampa Bay, they scored 28 runs over the three games, and saw some very encouraging results from players who had been struggling. Most notably, Ike Davis was 6-for-11, with six RBI, while registering a pair of hits in each game. He hit his sixth home run of the season Tuesday, and added his eighth double on Wednesday. Jason Bay meanwhile, was in an 0-for-18 skid since returning the week before from the disabled list, finally broke that slump with an RBI single on Wednesday. He then hit his first homer since April 20 in the series finale in a 1-for-4 effort.
Mets Starting Lineup
- CF Kirk Nieuwenhuis
- 2B Daniel Murphy
- 3B David Wright
- RF Lucas Duda
- 1B Ike Davis
- LF Jason Bay
- C Josh Thole
- SS Omar Quintanilla
- SP Dillon Gee
Dillon Gee (4-4, 4.82 ERA) will start for the Mets against the Reds' Bronson Arroyo (2-4, 3.79 ERA). Gee is looking to follow up a strong start against the Yankees that he ended up taking a hard-luck loss in. Pitching seven innings, Gee struck out five while allowing three runs on five hits. He has been good to the Met bullpen as of late, going at least 6 2/3 innings in each of his last five starts. He is 2-1 with two no-decisions in that span. Arroyo also had a strong outing last time out, allowing just two runs in seven innings against Detroit and taking a no decision in a 3-2 Reds loss. He hasn't won a game since May 7, posting an 0-3 record with three no-decisions in his six starts since. Arroyo's ERA has also rose from 2.75 to 3.79 in that span.
- Arroyo has faced the Mets 13 times in his career with some success. He has a lifetime record of 7-3 against the Amazins with a 3.57 ERA. He has also thrown three complete games against the Mets, including one shutout. Dillon Gee has never faced the Reds in his career.
- The Mets will have to be careful pitching to the Reds' Joey Votto, who is on a three-game hitting streak and batted .500 in their series with Cleveland with two home runs and six RBI. He leads the club in average (.362), RBI (44), Slugging (.657) and OPS (1.142). He ranks second in the NL in batting average (trailing only San Francisco's Melky Cabrera by one point) and first in slugging and OPS.
- Kirk Nieuwenhuis had a couple big games in Tampa, going 5-for-9 and scoring five times in the series opener and finale. He also homered twice on Thursday, his fourth and fifth of the season.
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