New York (68-70) at Miami (62-77)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Miami Gardens, FL
Temp: 90° F
  • Game info: 7:10 pm EDT Mon Sep 5, 2011
  • TV: SNY, FSFL
Preview | Box Score | Recap

The New York Mets are surging towards .500 again, and much of their recent success has come at the expense of the Florida Marlins.

The Mets will try to beat the Marlins for the fifth time in a week when they open their final three-game series at Sun Life Stadium on Monday night.

Despite being all but mathematically eliminated from the playoff race, New York (68-70) has won eight of 10 after beating Washington 6-3 on Sunday. Willie Harris(notes) sparked a four-run sixth inning with a two-run, pinch-hit single.

“The Willie Harrises and those guys that have been here all year long … we’ve asked them to do some tough jobs.” manager Terry Collins told the Mets’ official website. “They deserve to be treated professionally and they deserve to be put in situations that they’re on this team for, and that was one of those situations.”

The Mets may be in strong position to continue their surge. They took four of five from the Marlins (62-77) at home last week, capping the extended series with a 7-5 victory Thursday.

New York, though, has dropped 11 of its last 15 at Sun Life Stadium, which will be replaced as the Marlins’ home next year as they’re scheduled to move into a new stadium.

The Mets will give the ball to Chris Capuano(notes) (10-11, 4.41 ERA) for the series opener.

The left-hander struggled early and didn’t get a decision in Wednesday’s 3-2 win over the Marlins, allowing two runs in the opening inning before holding Florida scoreless in the next four.

Capuano was charged with an 8-5 loss in his most recent visit to Miami, allowing four runs and two homers in six innings July 23. He’s 0-2 with a 5.51 ERA in four games - three starts - in South Florida since a win for Milwaukee in 2005.

Mets shortstop Jose Reyes(notes) is expected back in the lineup after being given Sunday off. He’s trying to regain the NL batting lead from Milwaukee’s Ryan Braun(notes), the current leader at .335 - just ahead of Reyes’ .333 mark.

Reyes is 10 for 27 over his last five road games against the Marlins.

Florida is last in the NL East, but took two of three from first-place Philadelphia including a wild 5-4, 14-inning victory Sunday in which Mike Cameron’s(notes) bases-leaded walk plated the winning run. However, Philadelphia played the game under protest after Hunter Pence’s(notes) long drive to right in the sixth was interfered with by a Phillies fan. Umpires used instant replay to call Pence out after the apparent double left runners on second and third with the score tied at 2.

Javier Vazquez(notes) (8-11, 4.42) will try to lead Florida to its first three-game winning streak since July 31-Aug. 2. The last two of that run came at home against the Mets.

The right-hander beat New York Tuesday, yielding three hits in seven innings of a 6-0 win. He had been 0-2 with a 3.00 ERA in his five previous starts.

“He’s probably been the most effective guy we’ve had,” Marlins manager Jack McKeon told the team’s official website. “He’s had a little tough luck, lost a couple of low-scoring games when we didn’t hit.”

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Starting Pitchers

C. Capuano NYY vs. J. Vazquez Mia
11-12 Record 13-11
4.55 ERA 3.69
168 K 162
53 BB 50
1.35 WHIP 1.18

Scoreboard

Monday, Sep 5