New York rookie southpaw Zack Wheeler can stay unbeaten on the road on Thursday night when the Mets pull into Petco Park to begin a four- game series with the San Diego Padres.
The 23-year-old Georgia native was initially drafted by the San Francisco Giants before heading to the Mets organization in a trade for outfielder Carlos Beltran.
He debuted with six innings of scoreless four-hit ball in a 6-1 win at Atlanta on June 18, and has since improved to 4-0 in six road starts while toting a stingy 2.21 earned run average.
He was a 4-1 winner over the Arizona Diamondbacks in his last start - in Phoenix - on Aug. 10, and allowed a single run on six hits with no walks over 6 1/3 innings of work.
In 36 2/3 innings on the road, opponents have managed to hit just .206 - 33 points lower than his overall mark of .239.
He's opposed by journeyman righty Tyson Ross, who makes his 29th career start - and eighth for the Padres - in his 80th career big-league outing.
Now 26, Ross was a second-round pick of the Oakland Athletics in 2008 and was 6-18 in 53 games with the team through the end of 2012.
Ross was part of a four-player trade that sent him to the Padres in November along with minor-leaguer A.J. Kirby-Jones.
He's won three of four decisions in four starts since the All-Star Break, including a 3-1 victory at Cincinnati on Aug. 10 in which he allowed a single run on four hits in seven innings.
Ross has never faced the Mets.
On Wednesday in Los Angeles, Yasiel Puig legged out a double on a slow rolling grounder and came home to score on Adrian Gonzalez's line drive down the left- field line, as the Dodgers prevailed in 12 innings over the Mets, 5-4, to extend their winning streak to eight games.
Los Angeles trailed by four runs after five innings, but chipped away to stay within striking distance. LaTroy Hawkins blew the save for New York in the ninth, denying Dillon Gee of his ninth win. He served up a two- run, game- tying homer to pinch-hitter Andre Ethier that sent the game to extra innings.
When his hit in the 12th through the middle deflected off the glove of shortstop Omar Quintanilla, Puig never stopped running and came flying in to slide into second safely. Gonzalez handed Pedro Feliciano (0-1) the loss with his liner down the third-base line.
In Denver. Corey Dickerson went 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored to back another strong start at home from Jorge De La Rosa, with the pair leading the Colorado Rockies to a 4-2 victory over the Padres to take the rubber match of a three-game series.
Andrew Cashner (8-7) pitched well in a losing cause for San Diego, lasting seven innings and yielding six hits with seven strikeouts despite permitting three runs.
Chris Denorfia and Jesus Guzman both had two hits and an RBI to pace the Padres offensively.
The Padres entered the series with a slim 229-224 lead in the all-time series with the Mets, which stretches back to 1969. New York won two of three when the teams last met from April 1 to 4 at Citi Field.