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Friday, April 22, 2011

Preview: 2011 Regular Season Game 20 - Diamondbacks at Mets

NEW YORK - APRIL 13:  Starting pitcher Mike Pe...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Arizona Diamondbacks (8-9) at New York Mets (6-13), 7:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Arizona - Joe Saunders (0-2, 6.32) New York - Mike Pelfrey (0-2, 9.72)

New York Mets starter Mike Pelfrey began last season with a 4-0 mark and a save in his first five appearances, but hasn't enjoyed a similar start in 2011.

Pelfrey will try to snap his winless funk when he takes the ball for the Mets in tonight's opener of a three-game series versus the Arizona Diamondbacks at Citi Field. Pelfrey is 0-2 with a less desirable 9.72 earned run average in four starts this season and last pitched in a 4-0 loss at Atlanta on Saturday, allowing four runs and a season-high 11 hits in five frames.

The right-hander has permitted at least three earned runs in every start this season and hasn't enjoyed much success against Arizona. Pelfrey is 0-5 with a 6.69 ERA in seven career matchups with the Diamondbacks.

New York salvaged the finale of a three-game series versus the Houston Astros with Thursday's 9-1 victory behind Chris Capuano's seven innings of one-run ball and four strikeouts. Taylor Buchholz tossed the final two innings of relief to preserve the blowout win.

"It was good to get a win," said Mets third baseman David Wright, who ended with two hits, including a home run, two runs scored and three RBI.

Mike Nickeas and Ike Davis also belted solo homers in the win -- New York's second in the past 11 contests. The Mets also ended a seven-game home slide.

Arizona had a three-game winning streak stopped with Thursday's 7-4 loss in Cincinnati, as D'Backs starter Daniel Hudson fell to 0-4 on the season after he allowed seven runs and five hits in 5 1/3 frames.

"I saw him kick the mound one time. Just trying too hard. He's got good stuff. Was unable to locate like he wanted to," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said about Hudson.

Kelly Johnson and Stephen Drew both homered for the Diamondbacks, who lost for the fourth time in seven tries.

Gibson looks to get better results from winless starter Joe Saunders tonight against the Mets. Saunders is winless (0-2) in three starts this season and was saddled with defeat the previous time out in a 5-3 loss versus San Francisco. He allowed five runs and 12 hits over 6 2/3 innings.

Saunders, a left-hander, has never faced the Mets in his career.

Arizona has dominated this series with the Mets lately, having won five of six meetings a year ago and 11 of the past 14 matchups in the series.
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