If New York right-hander Matt Harvey plans on starting for the National League at next week's All-Star Game, he'd better be on his game Monday when the Mets open a three-game set against the San Francisco Giants at AT&T Park.
Despite just seven wins, Harvey certainly has the credentials to be on the hill next Tuesday at Citi Field, as he is amongst the league leaders with a 2.27 ERA and tops the NL with 141 strikeouts.
Of course, it will be San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy who will be picking the All-Star starter.
"It's one thing I can't decide," Harvey said. "I've got two more starts left, and I have to go out there obviously and put up zeros, and do everything I can to help the Mets."
Harvey had a rare hiccup his last time out on Wednesday against Arizona, as he absorbed just his second loss of the season and was hit for five runs and nines hits in six innings.
"He's all fired up about the All-Star thing, the situation," manager Terry Collins said afterward. "(This) week, he's going to pitch against the Giants, and it's going to be a nice, cool evening. It's going to be in front of Bruce, so I'm sure he's going to be all fired up."
Opposing Harvey will be former phenom Tim Lincecum, who continues to struggle and is just 4-9 with a 4.66 ERA. Lincecum lost his fourth straight decision on Tuesday in Cincinnati as the Reds reached him for three runs and six hits in 5 1/3 innings.
"I need to attack the (strike) zone better," Lincecum said.
Lincecum, who is 5-1 lifetime versus the Mets, has just one win in his last nine starts.
San Francisco lost two of three over the weekend to the Los Angeles Dodgers and is a major league-worst 5-16 since June 15. The Giants dropped a 4-1 heartbreaker on Sunday, as Sergio Romo gave up a three-run double with two outs in the ninth inning.
"There's no question this is a tough loss," Bochy said. "These guys are resilient and are handling this as well as they can."
San Francisco split its eight matchups with the Mets last season.