David Wright has struggled since establishing a new franchise-record hitting streak, but a three-game series against one of his favorite opponents could get the young third baseman back on track.
After a disappointing start to their homestand, Wright and the Mets look to rebound when they open a series against the Colorado Rockies on Monday night.
Wright went 0-for-11 as the Mets (11-6) lost two of three games to the Atlanta Braves over the weekend. Wright had set a club record by hitting safely in 26 straight games—dating to last season—before the streak was snapped against Atlanta.
The Mets dropped out of first place in the NL East with their 9-6 loss on Sunday. New York had a 6-3 lead after six innings, but its bullpen allowed six runs—three earned—in three innings as the Mets fell to 4-4 at home.
New York entered Sunday’s game with a major league-leading 1.31 bullpen ERA.
“These are the games you’re probably going to need late in the year,” said second baseman Jose Valentin, whose eighth-inning error paved the way for three Braves runs. “You can’t afford to lose games like that.”
The Mets, who were an NL-best 50-31 at home in 2006, hope to take advantage of a Colorado team they dominated last year. Wright batted .375 (9-for-24) with two home runs and 11 RBIs as the Mets went 5-1 against the Rockies, including 3-0 at home.
Wright is a career .387 (24-for-62) hitter with seven home runs and 22 RBIs in 16 games against Colorado. The Mets have won 11 of 16 games in the series since Wright’s major-league debut in July 2004.
The Rockies have also dropped 13 of their last 14 games at Shea Stadium.
John Maine (2-0, 1.93 ERA) will take the mound for New York, which is undefeated in his three starts this year. Maine won his last start by allowing two runs and two hits in a 9-2 win over Florida last Wednesday.
The right-hander, who is limiting hitters to a .136 batting average this year, is making his first career appearance against Colorado.
The Rockies (8-11) ended a three-game skid by beating San Diego 4-2 on Sunday for only their third win in nine games.
Matt Holliday had three hits, including two for extra bases, to raise his average to an NL-leading .382. Holliday, though, hasn’t hit a home run since April 6, and the Rockies’ seven homers are the fewest in the majors.
“I felt better today,” Holliday told the team’s official Web site. “I’m still searching for a little bit of my extension and some things that I’m working on, but it’s nice to get hits.”
Holliday, a career .313 hitter, is batting just .257 in 10 games at Shea Stadium.
Mets leadoff hitter Jose Reyes is second in the NL with a .370 average.
Taylor Buchholz (1-0, 5.68 ERA) will be making his first start of the year for the Rockies. He has allowed four runs over 6 1-3 innings spanning four relief appearances this season.
In his one career start against the Mets, the right-hander gave up seven runs—six earned—in five innings to suffer the loss last July 21 for Houston.