Cincinnati (14-25) at New York (21-19)

  • Game info: 1:10 pm EDT Wed May 18, 2005
  • TV: MSG
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Eric Milton looks to overcome his early season struggles as the Cincinnati Reds play the finale of their three-game series at Shea Stadium.

Signed to a $25.5 million, three-year deal on Dec. 27, Milton is going through one of the worst stretches of his career.

In his last start, a 12-2 loss at Philadelphia on Friday night, Milton got tagged by his former team for eight runs and eight hits.

“I’ve never struggled like this,” Milton said after he matched his shortest outing of the year, 4 1-3 innings, and his season-high run total. His ERA jumped to 7.21 and he allowed his league-worst 14th home run in eight starts.

The veteran left-hander has given up 23 earned runs, 33 hits and eight home runs in his last four starts.

“I just don’t have an answer,” said Milton. “I wish I did. I’ve never struggled this badly before, and it’s a grind, a battle. It’s never been this tough. I’ve never struggled like this before.”

The Reds, who have lost seven of their last 11 games, need Milton at his best on Wednesday, as the team is looking to avoid getting swept by the Mets.

Kaz Matsui’s two-run homer in the seventh inning on Tuesday lifted the Mets to a 2-1 victory. New York is looking to avenge the three-game sweep the Reds posted in the season’s opening series.

Tom Glavine, coming off his best performance of the season, will start for the Mets, hoping to post back-to-back victories for the first time this year.

The 39-year-old left-hander, who came into Friday’s game against St. Louis with opponents hitting .333 against him, limited the Cardinals to four singles in seven-plus innings.

“I knew he had it in him,” New York manager Willie Randolph said of Glavine. “I never worried about him. He has the track record. It’s just a matter of time until he finds it.”

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Starting Pitchers

E. Milton LAD vs. T. Glavine ATL
8-15 Record 13-13
6.47 ERA 3.53
123 K 105
52 BB 61
1.55 WHIP 1.36