(Sports Network) - Phillies ace Roy Halladay tries to continue his success against the New York Mets as the teams play the middle contest of this weekend's series at Citizens Bank Park.
Halladay holds a 7-2 lifetime record with a 3.43 ERA in nine games against the Mets. The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner won all four of hits starts against the Mets last year and beat them in an 11-0 final on April 7 in Philadelphia. In that game, Halladay threw seven shutout innings. He's also coming off a career high-tying 14-strikeout performance, coming within one out of a complete game in a 3-1 victory at San Diego on Sunday.
The 33-year-old right-hander, who has yet to allow a home run this season, has completed at least six innings in all five of his starts this season, and he has more strikeouts (39) than walks (six) and hits allowed (32) combined thus far.
Jonathon Niese opposed Halladay April 7 and didn't fare well, surrendering eigh hits an six runs in just four innings. Niese is 1-2 with a 3.96 ERA in four lifetime starts vs. the Phillies.
Niese is coming off his first victory of the season, against Arizona on Sunday. In that game, the southpaw allowed six hits and three runs -- two earned -- over seven innings.
The Phillies will try to carry the momentum of Friday's power surge from Ryan Howard. The first baseman belted two homers, including a grand slam, and knocked in six runs to carry the Phillies to a 10-3 rout.
Howard's explosive bat backed a good outing by Vance Worley, who was called up from Triple-A Lehigh Valley to replace injured No. 5 starter Joe Blanton.
Worley (1-0) yielded just two hits and four walks in six innings, striking out five for just his second career MLB win.
"We had a number of reports on him," said Mets manager Terry Collins, "but when you haven't seen a guy before, he had a funky arm action. I'd like to see him again."
Howard moved into a tie for second place on the Phillies all-time home run list and set a team record with 27 RBI in April. Placido Polanco set a new franchise record with 39 hits in April, going 2-for-5 to break Chase Utley's mark of 38 set in 2008.
The Phillies (17-8) also set a club record for wins in April, matching the 1993 team that won the National League pennant.
Ike Davis hit a solo homer and Jason Pridie belted a two-run blast with one out in the ninth inning for New York's only runs. The Mets have lost two in a row on the heels of a six-game winning streak.
Philadelphia won two of three meetings with New York earlier this month at Citizens Bank Park and has been victorious in eight of the past 12 matchups between the two clubs.