Barry Bonds may not be the only star on the field at Shea Stadium on Wednesday night.
Piazza went 0-for-4 and caught all nine innings for Triple-A Norfolk in the fifth game of his minor league rehabilitation assignment on Tuesday.
The All-Star catcher, out since May 17 because of a severely strained right groin, plans to join the Mets in New York and work out with the team before Wednesday night’s game. If all goes well, he could be activated in time to play.
“I feel good and I’m running well,” Piazza said. “We have close to gametime to make a decision. If need be, we’ll talk after the workout. They may want me to go to (Double-A) Binghamton and get more at-bats. If so, that’s fine.”
Bonds homered twice, giving him 650 in his career, but New York held on to win 5-4 Tuesday.
Bonds leads the majors with 37 home runs. He hit a pair of solo shots, with his drive in the ninth inning moving him within 10 of Willie Mays for third place on the all-time list.
Mets manager Art Howe was impressed by Bonds’ power display.
“Amazed? How can you not be?” Howe said. “This guy looks at times like he’s toying with people, hitting in his backyard off his son with a Wiffle ball bat.”
The Mets have won three of their five games against the NL West leaders this season.
New York sends right-hander Steve Trachsel to the mound against Bonds on Wednesday. Trachsel is 6-3 with a 2.65 ERA lifetime against San Francisco.
The veteran hurler is 2-1 over his last four starts, improving to 10-7 on the season. Bonds is hitting just .214 (3-for-14) with one home run and seven walks against Trachsel.
STANDINGS: Giants - 1st place, NL West. Mets - 5th place, 27 GB, NL East.
GIANTS PROBABLE STARTER: Jerome Williams (5-2, 2.96 ERA). Williams is 0-1 with a 3.75 ERA over his last four starts. The 21-year-old hurler failed to qualify for a decision in his last start after allowing five runs—three earned—and six hits in 5 1-3 innings of a 7-5 win over Pittsburgh on Thursday.
METS PROBABLE STARTER: Trachsel (10-7, 4.58 ERA). Trachsel has a 4.45 ERA in five starts since the All-Star break. He allowed three runs and six hits in five innings to earn a 5-4 win over Houston on Thursday.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Giants - Bonds, .341 avg., 37 HRs, 77 RBIs and 85 runs; Marquis Grissom, 9 SBs. Mets - Jason Phillips, .326 avg., Cliff Floyd, 18 HRs and 62 RBIs; Ty Wigginton, 59 runs; Wigginton and Jose Reyes, 9 SBs.
SEASON SERIES: Mets, 3-2.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Giants - Opponents are hitting .235 off RHP Williams. … OF Bonds leads the majors with 110 walks and a .735 slugging percentage. … 1B J.T. Snow left Tuesday’s game with tightness in his left groin. He is listed as day-to-day. Mets - SS Reyes has a 12-game hitting streak. He has raised his batting average from .264 to .298 during the streak. … C-1B Phillips is 7-for-11 with two home runs in his career against the Giants. … OF Floyd is hitless in his last 10 at-bats.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Giants - 32-27 on the road; Mets - 24-35 at home.
INJURIES: Giants - C Alberto Castillo (wrist), 15-day DL; INF Rich Aurilia (appendicitis), 15-day DL; INF Ray Durham (leg), 15-day DL; OF Marvin Benard (knee), 15-day DL; RHP Robb Nen (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Felix Rodriguez (abdominal muscle), 15-day DL; LHP Kirk Rueter (shoulder), 15-day DL. Mets - C Piazza (groin), 15-day DL; IF Mo Vaughn (knee), 60-day DL; RHP Pedro Astacio (shoulder), 60-day DL; RHP Scott Strickland (groin), 60-day DL.
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