New York (38-23) at Arizona (34-28)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Phoenix, AZ
Temp: 89° F
  • Game info: 4:40 pm EDT Sun Jun 11, 2006
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It’s been five years since Pedro Martinez has gone this long without a win.

Martinez looks for his first victory in eight starts and will try to help the New York Mets wrap up a four-game sweep of the Arizona Diamondbacks when the teams meet at Chase Field on Sunday.

Martinez (5-2, 3.01 ERA) gave up season-highs of seven runs and eight hits in five innings of Tuesday’s 8-5 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers. He is 0-2 with a 3.06 ERA in seven starts since starting the season with wins in his first five starts.

The two runs he gave up in the first inning Tuesday equaled the number he allowed in his previous 24 innings combined.

“It was a bad day at the office,” Martinez said. “Even before the game, I didn’t feel like my body was there. I couldn’t make pitches. I was missing a lot.”

Martinez has not gone seven starts without a victory since going winless in his final seven outings of 2001 with Boston. Now 34, the right-hander also failed to win his first start of 2002.

Martinez could have a good shot at ending his winless streak against the Diamondbacks. In four career starts against them, he is 2-1 and his 1.29 ERA is his best against any team.

The Mets (38-23) have won four straight, including Saturday’s 5-0 win over the Diamondbacks. In just his fourth start, Cuban-born rookie Alay Soler tossed a two-hitter en route to the first shutout of the season for New York, which improved to 5-1 on their 10-game road trip.

“He’s a guy that, even though you don’t know who he is, you get the sense that he’s pitched a lot and knows how to pitch,” Mets manager Willie Randolph said

The Mets, who have the best record in the National League, have won nine straight at Chase Field.

The Diamondbacks (34-28) have dropped six straight, but remain tied with Los Angeles for first place in the NL West.

Russ Ortiz (0-4, 6.52) will look to help Arizona end its losing streak. He allowed three runs and four hits in five innings of Tuesday’ 10-1 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies.

The outing was the first since a stint on the disabled list with a calf injury for Ortiz, who threw 41 pitches and gave up a two-run homer in the first inning.

“I had a lot more adrenalin going in the first inning than I did during my rehab,” Ortiz said. “I think after that inning was over I felt I was in control with my emotions and everything, and so I ended the last four innings fine.”

Ortiz, who signed a $33 million, four-year contract in December 2004, has just one win in 18 starts since May 2005 and is 5-15 since joining the Diamondbacks. Still, manager Bob Melvin said that he will stay in the rotation for now.

“Right now, we have him in the rotation,” Melvin said. “The first inning obviously was dicey. It was a little bit of what we’ve seen in the past, but we thought he recovered as well as we’ve ever seen in the middle innings.”

Ortiz is 9-6 with a 5.02 ERA in 16 career starts against the Mets.

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Starting Pitchers

P. Martinez Phi vs. R. Ortiz LAD
9-8 Record 0-8
4.48 ERA 8.14
137 K 44
39 BB 40
1.11 WHIP 2.00