The Diamondbacks go for their ninth straight victory as they continue a three-game series against the Mets on Saturday at Shea Stadium.
Arizona (33-23) had won just two of its previous 17 meetings with the Mets (34-19) before taking Friday’s opener 5-1. Chris Snyder hit a two-run homer and Stephen Drew added a three-run shot, giving the Diamondbacks five homers in their last two games.
They are hitting .327 during their eight-game winning streak, which is the longest since a franchise-best 12-game run June 18-30, 2003. Arizona’s starters are posting a stifling 1.42 ERA during their latest streak, and Hernandez (5-2, 3.58 ERA) looks to continue that play following a complete-game effort.
The veteran right-hander, though, labored to his 43rd career complete game and first since Sept. 20, 2005, giving up 11 hits in an 8-4 victory over Houston on Sunday. Hernandez, who didn’t walk a batter, is 2-0 with a 1.88 ERA in his last three outings.
“I feel good,” Hernandez told the Diamondbacks’ official Web site. “I think I can do it. When I have the chance to do it, I’m going to.”
He is 11-12 with a 4.58 ERA in 31 career starts versus the Mets—his most appearances against any opponent. The 32-year-old held them to just one run and six hits over seven innings in a 3-1 victory on May 6.
New York likely won’t have some of the same players in the lineup this time around as it battles a rash of injuries. The NL East-leading Mets were already without starting outfielders Moises Alou (strained quad) and Shawn Green (broken bone in foot), who are both on the disabled list, and Friday third baseman David Wright and center fielder Carlos Beltran were also sidelined.
Wright was a late scratch due to back spasms, and Beltran is day-to-day with a bruised right knee. New York’s makeshift lineup mustered just four hits in Friday’s defeat, its second-fewest of the season.
“We’ve got nine guys,” Mets manager Willie Randolph said. “We’ll be fine.”
Julio Franco, the oldest player in the majors at 48, stole his second base of the season in the second inning.
Jorge Sosa (4-1, 3.64) hopes the Mets can get their offense going as he goes for his third straight home victory. The right-hander is 2-0 with a 1.98 ERA in two starts at Shea Stadium this season, holding opponents to a .111 batting average.
He is coming off back-to-back road starts, including a 6-4 victory over Florida on Sunday when he allowed two runs and five hits over 5 2-3 innings.
Sosa is 1-3 with a 5.79 ERA in seven career games, including four starts, versus the Diamondbacks. He held them to two runs and four hits over 6 1-3 innings in a 6-2 victory on May 5.
Arizona’s Tony Clark is 7-for-11 (.636) with five homers—his most against any pitcher—lifetime versus Sosa.
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