New York (41-39) at Philadelphia (43-37)

Cloudy Currently: Philadelphia, PA
Temp: 37° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Mon Jul 5, 2004
Preview | Box Score | Recap

The New York Mets are starting to feel pretty good about themselves. They could feel a lot better by the end of the week.

Fresh off their first sweep of their crosstown rivals, the Mets send All-Star Tom Glavine to the mound as they open a four-game set with the first-place Philadelphia Phillies.

A sweep of this series would land the Mets alone atop the NL East, and winning three of four could put them in a tie for the division lead. Their next three games before the All-Star break come against the Florida Marlins, who are slightly behind the Mets for second place.

The Mets beat the Yankees 6-5 Sunday to complete a three-game sweep, taking the season series for the first time since interleague play began in 1997. The Mets, who have won four straight and 13 of 19 overall, won four of six against the Yankees this season.

“Those are the games you want to be in as a closer. It’s a lot of fun,” said Braden Looper, who earned his 16th save in 18 chances. “They’ve got the best record in baseball, and we just swept ‘em. It says a lot.”

Ty Wigginton homered twice and Richard Hidalgo connected for a team record-tying fourth straight game for the Mets, who went 0-6 against the Yankees last season. The win also moved the Mets, who scored 27 runs during the three-game series, two games over .500 for the first time since Aug. 3, 2002.

“This was a great weekend for us. That’s a great team over there. They eyeballed us, but there was no leeway,” manager Art Howe said. “I think we sent a message to the rest of baseball that we’re starting to swing it.”

The Mets hope they can continue to generate some offense to back Glavine, named to the NL All-Star team Sunday night.

A lack of run support caused Glavine to lose his second straight start Wednesday, when he allowed two earned runs and seven hits in six innings of a 2-0 loss to the Cincinnati Reds. New York has totaled two runs in Glavine’s last two starts, and nine runs in the five games he’s lost this season.

The left-hander, whose 2.16 ERA leads the majors, has gone 2-3 over his last seven outings despite allowing 12 earned runs in 49 innings.

“He’s doing his job,” Howe said. “You can’t do much more than what he did. All he can do is go out and do his side of the job. Maybe, if he has a tough outing, we’ll get a bunch of runs. Maybe the guys are trying too hard.

“It would be nice to get him something to work with.”

The Phillies beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-2 on Sunday for their sixth victory in nine games.

Bobby Abreu homered, doubled and drove in three runs, and Eric Milton became the NL’s first 11-game winner as Philadelphia improved to 5-2 on its current 14-game homestand.

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Starting Pitchers

T. Glavine Atl vs. P. Abbott Phi
11-14 Record 3-11
3.60 ERA 6.47
109 K 46
70 BB 58
1.29 WHIP 1.71