Harvey hopes to bounce back in opener with Marlins

(SportsNetwork.com) - Matt Harvey eyes his first win in almost a month and tries to bounce back from one of the worst showings of his career on Friday when the New York Mets open a three-game series with the Miami Marlins at Citi Field.

Harvey was awful on Saturday in Pittsburgh, as the Pirates roughed him up for seven runs and six hits in four innings to fall to 5-2 on the year to go along with a 2.91 ERA.

"It's just one of those days," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "He doesn't have very many of them, but today was one."

Collins also pointed out that it was Harvey's third consecutive start on four days' rest, the first time he has done that since undergoing Tommy John surgery in October 2013.

"You still have to realize it's his first year back from the operation, and he's looked so good," Collins said. "We just get so carried away that he's never going to have a bad day that when he does, it's shocking for us all."

Harvey gave up four runs in a win over the Marlins back on April 19 and is 1-1 in five starts against them with a 4.03 ERA.

New York rebounded from a sweep in Pittsburgh to take all three games from Philadelphia, including a 7-0 win in Wednesday's finale that saw Noah Syndergaard not only dominate on the hill, but with his bat as well.

Syndergaard (2-2) tossed 7 1/3 innings of six-hit ball and went 3-for-3 with a solo homer. The right-hander, making just his fourth career start, struck out six and didn't walk a batter as the Mets swept the Phillies at home for the second time this season.

"It's great being able to go that deep into the game and give the bullpen a little rest," said Syndergaard. "It's really easy to go out there and throw quality strikes when you put seven runs on the board."

Syndergaard's fabulous afternoon overshadowed a tremendous day by players who get paid to hit for the Mets. Lucas Duda hit a pair of solo homers, going 3- for-4 with three runs scored, and Michael Cuddyer added a two-run homer.

New York is 20-6 at home this season.

That could be bad news for a Marlins team that has lost 11 of 13 overall and is just 8-15 away from home on the year. Miami comes into this contest after getting swept in a three-game set by the Pirates that culminated with a 5-2 loss on Wednesday.

"There are signs of good things, but there are other things that we have to step up and get done," Marlins manager Dan Jennings said. "We're not taking care of that right now in certain situations."

Hoping to stop the bleeding on Friday will be veteran right-hander Dan Haren, who is 4-2 with a 3.09 ERA, but is winless in his last three starts. Haren did not get a decision on Saturday, despite a terrific effort that saw him throw six scoreless innings in his team's 1-0 win.

Haren's 115 pitches were the most by any Miami starter this season and the most by a Marlins pitcher since 2012.

"Man, that was a grind. It was one of the toughest six innings I've ever thrown," Haren said. "I was pretty much out of gas in the sixth."

Haren has faced the Mets 12 times (11 starts) and is 4-3 against them with a 4.82 ERA.

The Mets have won five of seven from the Marlins this season.