National League Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, April 15th (All times Eastern)
New York Mets (6-2) at Philadelphia Phillies (3-5), 1:35 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: New York - Mike Pelfrey (0-0, 4.76) Philadelphia - Cole Hamels (0-1, 5.06)
(Sports Network) - The Phillies haven't done much to silence the worries of an offense playing without Ryan Howard and Chase Utley.
After getting shut out for the first time this season on Saturday, Philadelphia tries to avoid a three-game sweep at the hands of the New York Mets this afternoon.
Opening the season without two of their biggest sluggers due to injury, the Phillies have plated just 20 runs this season, ahead of only the Pittsburgh Pirates for the fewest in the majors. They were held to six hits in Saturday's 5-0 loss to the Mets, who got third baseman David Wright back into the lineup.
Wright hadn't played since Monday, when he suffered a fractured pinkie on his right hand, but the former All-Star returned in a big way, homering in his first at-bat and adding two singles while adding a lift to his teammates.
"When a guy like David Wright goes out and plays with a broken finger, and everybody knows he's got it, and plays the way he plays, all of a sudden the other guys don't hurt as bad," said New York manager Terry Collins.
Lucas Duda clubbed a two-run homer for the Mets, who have taken the first two games of this series to improve to 6-2 on the young season.
Jon Niese limited the Phillies to five singles over 6 2/3 innings.
Vance Worley gave up four runs on eight hits and walked four in six frames for Philadelphia, which fell to 3-5.
"You just got to keep working and be confident things will get turned around," said Phillies outfielder John Mayberry Jr.
Neither Mike Pelfrey or Cole Hamels got their 2012 seasons off to the best of starts and the 28-year-old hurlers will each try to rebound this afternoon.
Philadelphia's Hamels, coming off a 14-9 record and 2.79 earned run average in 32 games last season, faced the Marlins on Monday and was charged with four runs -- three earned -- on eight hits over 5 1/3 innings. He did strike out nine without a walk in the loss.
"I felt like my stuff was really good. Unfortunately there were a few pitches that got away. Even when you make a good pitch, the bat's gonna put it in play. It's a long season," Hamels said. "We have to go out and keep on battling. We have to fight through it."
Pelfrey, meanwhile, made his season debut for the Mets on Monday and picked up a no-decision. The right-hander was able to strike out a career high-tying eight over 5 2/3 frames, but also allowed three runs on 10 hits with a walk.
Both Pelfrey and the left-handed Hamels have struggled against their respective opponents as well. Pelfrey went 1-3 with a 7.71 ERA in six versus the Phillies a season ago, evening his career mark against them at 7-7 with a 5.37 ERA in 19 games, while Hamels is just 3-10 in his career against New York in 17 starts with a 4.46 ERA. The former World Series MVP went 1-2 with a 6.86 ERA in four appearances in 2011.
Philadelphia won 11 of its 18 games against New York a season ago, taking six of nine at home.
On this the 65th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier Major League Baseball is commemorating this special occasion by having all players and on-field personnel once again wear the Hall of Famer's No. 42 in addition to other pregame festivities.
04/15 10:33:06 ET