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Mets Vs. Padres: Dickey Looks To Help Mets Win Third Straight Game

(Sports Network) – The New York Mets look to make it three straight wins this evening in the continuation of a four-game series versus the San Diego Padres at Citi Field.

New York rallied for five runs in the last two innings and put up a three-spot in the bottom of the ninth for a 9-8 triumph in Monday’s series opener, then scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth for a 5-4 victory last night. Angel Pagan homered, Nick Evans had a sacrifice fly and Ruben Tejada drew a bases-loaded walk for the final margin.

“We all know what we can do. We know the kind of team we are,” Pagan said about his team. “We like to fight until the end, and the last couple of nights we showed that.”

Lucas Duda finished with a team-high two hits for the Mets, who have won three of four games since a five-game losing streak. Jason Bay also extended his hitting streak to 11 games. Chris Capuano started for the Mets and did not record a decision after allowing four runs on nine hits in six innings of work. D.J. Carrasco threw a scoreless eighth inning for the win and Jason Isringhausen earned his sixth save in the ninth. He now has 299 career saves.

R.A. Dickey will take the mound for New York tonight and has lost two straight starts and three of his previous four decisions. In Friday’s 4-1 loss versus Atlanta, Dickey suffered the tough-luck defeat and allowed two runs in seven innings of work. He is 5-10 with a 3.72 ERA in 24 games (23 starts) this season.

The right-handed knuckleballer has never faced San Diego and is only 1-7 with a 4.09 ERA in 12 starts at Citi Field this season.

San Diego has dropped two in a row since a four-game winning streak and is 3-2 on a 10-game road trip that concludes with a trip to Cincinnati over the weekend. Chad Qualls was saddled with the loss and was responsible for all three runs scored in the bottom of the eighth inning.

“It’s tough when you’re in a position to win a game and it doesn’t happen. It’s tough to win a game at times,” Padres manager Bud Black said.

Wade LeBlanc allowed two runs on six hits and a walk while striking out five through six innings for the no-decision. Jesus Guzman and Jason Bartlett each had two hits and an RBI, while Guzman extended his hitting streak to 10 games.

On the injury front for San Diego, second baseman Orlando Hudson left Tuesday’s game with a strained right groin and could miss tonight’s contest. The veteran infielder was replaced by Alberto Gonzalez at second base and has been on the disabled list twice already this season.

“We’re going to look at it tomorrow to see how it sets up,” Black said.

Aaron Harang hopes to remain unbeaten on the road when he takes the mound for the Friars tonight. He is 5-0 with a lofty 4.63 ERA in eight starts as the guest, with San Diego going 7-1 in that span. Harang won six straight road starts from May 30-Sept. 18, 2007 and is 5-1 with a 3.15 ERA over his past 11 starts overall. He lasted five innings in Friday’s 15-5 pounding of Pittsburgh and allowed four runs and 13 hits to improve to 10-3 in 19 starts to go along with a 3.91 earned run average.

The right-hander will make his seventh career start against the Mets and is 2-3 with a 6.11 ERA through the initial six appearances.

San Diego and New York are meeting for the first time since splitting six matchups a year ago. The Padres, who will also visit Cincinnati for three games on this trek, have won seven of the previous 13 meetings with the Mets.