The New York Mets didn't have much going for them during another dismal season other than Matt Harvey making a run at becoming the team's second consecutive NL Cy Young Award winner.
With the phenom now sidelined with a serious injury, Carlos Torres will take Harvey's place on the mound Thursday against the visiting Philadelphia Phillies.
The Mets (59-72) are headed toward their fifth straight losing season, and it got even worse when they found out Harvey's MRI revealed a torn ligament in his pitching elbow that will likely sideline him for the rest of 2013.
Harvey had a 2.27 ERA and was vying to follow R.A. Dickey as New York's second straight Cy Young winner, but his spot in the rotation will now be filled by Torres.
Torres (2-2, 2.96 ERA) hasn't started since giving up eight runs and nine hits in three innings of a 14-1 loss to Washington on July 28. The right-hander posted a 2.65 ERA in 13 relief appearances since, most recently going two-thirds of an inning in Monday's 2-1 loss to the Phillies.
Philadelphia's Ethan Martin (2-2, 6.33) went two-thirds of an inning in his last outing as well - but that was a start. The rookie right-hander allowed three runs and three hits while walking three - all coming after he retired the first two batters - in Saturday's 12-7, 18-inning loss to Arizona.
He's pitched five innings or fewer in four of his five starts.
Martin has struck out 23 in 21 1-3 innings, though, and will look to bounce back against a Mets team that has struck out the third-most among NL clubs.
Ike Davis and Wilmer Flores each fanned three times in Wednesday's 6-2 loss to the Phillies (61-72), who have won eight of 11 after dropping their first two under interim manager Ryne Sandberg. Carlos Ruiz homered and is hitting .447 during the team's hot stretch.
Chase Utley went 2 for 5 after going 1 for 17 over his previous five.
New York has been outscored 32-13 while losing six of seven. Justin Turner had two hits Wednesday, but the Mets left 14 men on base and went 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position.
The Mets will look to get some help from Matt den Dekker, who was called up Tuesday and will make his major league debut in this contest. The center fielder hit .296 with six homers and 38 RBIs in 53 games for Triple-A Las Vegas.
Manager Terry Collins said den Dekker and Juan Lagares, the regular center fielder, will wind up playing the outfield together at times.
"We're talking about the possibility of doing that (Thursday)," Collins told the team's official website. "I'm not sure it's going to happen (Thursday), but Matt's going to play (center on Thursday). I don't think it's really fair to Matt to play him in a game in a position he's not comfortable in."
New York has dropped nine of its last 12 home meetings with Philadelphia.
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