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Pirates At Mets: New York Goes For Four-Game Sweep

(Sports Network) - The New York Mets' playoff chances have gone by the wayside thanks in large part to the way they have played on the road. But even they can't come close to matching the futility displayed by the Pittsburgh Pirates away from home this season.

Tonight, the Mets try to add to the Bucs' road woes, as they try to complete a four-game sweep at Citi Field.

Pittsburgh fell to a dismal 15-58 on the road on Wednesday, as Angel Pagan's two-run single finished off a seven-run fourth inning rally that helped New York overturn a five-run deficit and hang on for an 8-7 win.

Pagan finished 2-for-4 while Carlos Beltran added two hits and a run scored, and Jose Reyes hit a solo home run for the Mets, who have won three games in a row for the first time since an eight-game win streak from June 10-18.

Another victory tonight would give them their first four-game sweep over the Pirates since turning the trick from June 16-22, 1997 at Shea Stadium.

Raul Valdes (3-3) grabbed the win despite giving up four runs on four hits and a walk over 1 2/3 innings of relief of starter Jenrry Mejia, who left in the third inning with an acute muscle strain in the back of his pitching shoulder.

"I saw him flinch on the mound a little bit," Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen said of Mejia. "He just felt like his shoulder was a little bit sore."

Paul Maholm (7-15) absorbed the loss after allowing seven runs -- two earned -- on seven hits and a pair of walks while striking out one for the Buccos, who have lost six of their last seven overall.

"I got soft contact and ground balls and it somehow didn't work out," a frustrated Maholm said.

Andrew McCutchen homered and drove in three runs in a losing cause, as the Pirates are closing in on their first 100-loss season since 2001. They are also within reach of attaining the worst road record in a 162-game season, currently held by the 1963 Mets, who finished 17-64 as the visitor.

Getting the call for the Mets tonight will be righty Mike Pelfrey, who is 14-9 with a 3.89 ERA. Pelfrey beat the Philadelphia Phillies his last time out, as he held them to a pair runs and six hits in 7 1/3 frames.

Pelfrey beat the Pirates back on August 20 and is 2-1 in three starts against them with a 4.34 ERA.

Pittsburgh will rely on righty Charlie Morton, who has lost his last six decisions and is a miserable 1-11 on the year with a 9.05 ERA. Morton put forth a decent effort on Saturday in Cincinnati, but did not factor in the decision, as he allowed three runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings of his team's 5-4 loss.

This will be Morton's first-ever start against the Mets.

New York took two of three in Pittsburgh from August 20-22.