Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Preview: 2011 Regular Season Game 79 - Mets at Tigers


New York Mets (39-39) at Detroit Tigers (43-36), 7:05 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: NY Mets - R.A. Dickey (3-7, 3.76) Detroit - Rick Porcello (6-5, 4.50)

The New York Mets try to go above .500 for the first time since the first week of the season this evening when they open a three-game inter-league set against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park.

The Mets pulled to the break-even mark over the weekend by taking two of three from the defending American League champion Texas Rangers. New York managed a series win on Sunday, as Jose Reyes went 4-for-5 with three runs scored and another driven in, sparking the Mets to an 8-5 victory.

Daniel Murphy added three hits, two runs scored and an RBI for New York, which has won four of five.

Dillon Gee (8-1), coming off his first loss of the season, got back in the win column with a quality six-inning start of three runs allowed on eight hits.

"It was nice to come in and just battle," Gee said. "Not good stuff today, but after the first inning, especially when they got me the lead back, my main goal was to keep them there, keep us in the game. I was just fortunate to be able to do that."



Getting the call tonight for the Mets will be knuckleballer R.A. Dickey, who is just 3-7, but has pitched to a 3.76 earned run average. Dickey did not get a decision on Wednesday against Oakland, but was terrific, as he allowed a run and three hits in eight innings, while striking out nine in his team's 3-2 win.

Dickey has faced the Tigers 13 times (six starts) and is 3-2 with a 4.02 ERA.

Detroit, meanwhile, will counter with young righty Rick Porcello, who has struggled of late, surrendering 14 runs in 7 2/3 innings over his last two outings. The Los Angeles Dodgers hit him hard on Wednesday, reaching him for five runs and nine hits in only 4 2/3 frames, but he escaped without a decision in his team's 7-5 win.

Porcello, who is 6-5 on the year with a 4.50 ERA, has never faced the Mets, the team the Morristown, NJ native rooted for as a child.

The Tigers pulled out a win in Monday's makeup game with the Toronto Blue Jays, as Jhonny Peralta hit an eighth-inning, RBI triple to lead Detroit to a 4-2 victory.

The Blue Jays placed runners on the corners with one down in the ninth, but Jose Valverde induced Juan Rivera into a game-ending double play to record his 18th save of the season.

"We got in a little trouble there in the ninth, but it was a good win for us," said Tigers manager Jim Leyland.

Joaquin Benoit (2-3) worked a scoreless eighth to earn the victory.

Victor Martinez went 2-for-4 with two RBI for the Tigers, who have won three straight and four of five. They have also won 12 of 16 at Comerica.

The Mets won two of three at home versus the Tigers last year, but dropped two of three in their last trip to Detroit in 2007.
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