Martinez and the Yankees resume their long-standing rivalry Saturday as the three-game Subway Series continues at Shea Stadium.
The three-time Cy Young Award winner has made 30 career starts against the Yankees, his most against any team. He is 11-10 against them.
Martinez, who owns a 3.13 career ERA against the Yankees, made 27 of those starts between 1998 and 2004 while with the Boston Red Sox. He started against the Yankees twice last season after signing with the Mets as a free agent, going 1-0 with a 1.80 ERA.
The victory came on June 24 at Yankee Stadium against Mussina. Martinez gave up two runs and six hits in eight innings, while Mussina allowed five runs and six hits in six innings and was charged with the loss.
Martinez and Mussina have squared off against each other eight times, with Martinez posting a 3-4 record in those outing and Mussina going 3-3.
Martinez (5-0, 3.19 ERA) won his first five starts this season, but has not received a decision in his last three. He gave up four runs and four hits— including two homers—in seven innings of the Mets’ 10-inning, 6-5 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday.
Martinez, who struck out 10 batters for the 107th time in his career and third this season, is tied with Carlos Zambrano of the Chicago Cubs for second in the National League with 62 strikeouts, but has allowed a team-high eight homers—more than he allowed in 29 outings for the Red Sox in 2003.
“It seems like every time I make a mistake, it’s a home run,” he said. “It’s not a double, it’s not a hit, it’s not a triple. It’s a home run.”
Mussina (6-1, 2.56) allowed two runs and six hits in seven innings but did not record a decision in the Yankees’ 4-2 loss to the Texas Rangers on Monday and failed to become the first seven-game winner in baseball. He has pitched at least six innings in each of his nine starts, while not allowing more than three runs in any of them.
Mussina is 5-2 with a 4.01 ERA in eight career starts against the Mets. He said that while the games are important, he doesn’t put any extra emphasis on the Subway Series.
“We play the Mets every year,” said Mussina. “They’re playing well. (Manager) Willie (Randolph)’s got them playing good baseball, they’re in first place, and while everybody gets pumped up about this series, maybe there’s a little more weight to it this year.”
The Mets (25-16) won the series opener, beating the Yankees 7-6 on Friday. David Wright hit an RBI single with two outs in the ninth inning off Yankees closer Mariano Rivera, sending the Mets to just their fourth win in 11 games.
“The fans came out in full force. They’re battling against each other. Just the energy. I think the players feed off the energy,” Wright said. “You can say as much as you want that it’s just another game—I guess in the win-loss column, it is just another game—but there’s definitely a lot more energy and there’s definitely a lot more adrenaline flowing.”
Robinson Cano drove in two runs for the Yankees (23-17), who jumped out to a 4-0 lead before Beltran’s homer.
Making matters worse, catcher Jorge Posada left Friday’s game after 1 1/2 innings because of a sore upper back, Kyle Farnsworth came out after one inning of relief because of lower back soreness, and outfielder Bernie Williams won’t start Saturday because of a tight buttocks muscle.