Pettitte will take part in the New York Yankees’ crosstown rivalry with the Mets for the first time in four years as the teams open a three-game interleague series at Shea Stadium on Friday night.
Pettitte (2-2, 2.68 ERA) is 5-0 with a 2.43 ERA in 12 starts against the Mets since the start of the 2000 World Series. The Yankees won both of his starts in the World Series, although the veteran didn’t earn a decision either time despite posting a 1.98 ERA.
His numbers against the Mets (26-14) include a 2-0 record and a 2.90 ERA in five starts with Houston over the three previous seasons.
As a member of the Yankees, the left-hander is 5-2 with a 3.63 ERA in 10 starts against the Mets during the regular season. His last start in the Subway Series in a Yankee uniform was on June 20, 2003.
Pettitte has been the steadiest member of the Yankees’ rotation this year, but they are just 3-5 when he starts. In his last outing, he gave up two runs and nine hits in 7 1-3 innings as the Yankees (18-21) lost 2-1 to Seattle on Sunday.
Several Mets have had success against Pettitte despite his success against the team. Carlos Delgado is batting .362 (21-for-58) with five home runs against him, Carlos Beltran has hit .387 (13-for-31) and David Wright is 5-for-10 with a home run.
That trio played a big part in the Mets’ 6-5 come-from-behind victory against the Chicago Cubs on Thursday.
Delgado’s two-run single capped a five-run rally, with Beltran and Wright contributing as pinch-hitters as the Mets won for the seventh time in nine games. Beltran worked a walk and Wright drove him in to make it 5-4.
“This is going to give us great momentum going into the weekend,” Delgado said.
Mets shortstop Jose Reyes was held out as a precaution after leaving Wednesday night’s game with slight tightness in his left hamstring, but is expected to be fine for the weekend series.
The NL East-leading Mets trail the regular-season series between the teams 32-22 after the teams split six games last season. They enter this edition of the rivalry as favorites, however, with the Yankees coming in as losers of five of seven games, scoring two runs or less four times in that span.
The Yankees were held to six hits in a 4-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox on Thursday. They had two runners on in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings but couldn’t score against Jon Garland until the seventh.
“I know we’re going to get better at it. I know we’re going to put a streak together,” manager Joe Torre said. “But it hasn’t happened yet. … We’re just coming up empty. … We’re keeping the game close enough where we can win it, but we just haven’t been able to put any offense together.”
The Yankees were without starting center fielder Johnny Damon for the second straight game Thursday due to a sore left calf that has bothered him all season.
“It’s that strain I had on opening day,” said Damon, who is batting .256 with two homers and 13 RBIs. “It’s still kind of there but I’m all right.”
Damon’s status for Friday’s game is uncertain. Melky Cabrera has started in his place.
Yankees catcher Jorge Posada has a career-high 12-game hitting streak, posting a .435 (20-for-46) average in that span. Posada, though, has hit .216 (32-for-148) against the Mets.
Oliver Perez (4-3, 3.00) will take the mound for the Mets. The left-hander is coming off perhaps his best start, giving up one run and two hits while striking out six batters in 8 1-3 innings to beat Milwaukee 9-1 on Sunday.
Perez has made two starts against the Yankees, going 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA and allowing 10 walks over 11 2-3 innings. This will be his first appearance against them since 2005.