The New York Mets continue their up and down 2012 campaign on Monday when they open up a three-game series against the disappointing Philadelphia Phillies Monday night at Citizens Bank Park.
Going along with the script of the season to this point, the Mets have won two straight after dropping four in a row. Before that they had won five of six, including a three-game sweep of Jose Reyes and the Miami Marlins. In taking two of three from the Arizona Diamondbacks over the weekend, New York stayed ahead of the Marlins and Phillies in the NL East.
Last time out, the Mets were led by another solid performance from R.A. Dickey. The knuckleballer picked up his fourth win of the season behind eight innings of one-run ball. All wasn't well in Queens, however, as Ruben Tejada was forced to leave the game with a strained quad, though manager Terry Collins was also worried about the eye of his starting shortstop. Tejada was injured when he caught his spike on his way to first base and could be headed to the disabled list.
The Phillies had dropped the first two games of their series against the Washington Nationals before pulling out a 9-3 victory on Sunday night in front of a national TV audience. Despite easily handling the Nationals, their performance was overshadowed in the media by rookie Bryce Harper. The phenom stole home plate against the Phillies, accounting for the only run Philadelphia starter Cole Hamels would surrender.
New York will face the Phillies other ace, Roy Halladay, in the series opener Monday. Halladay hasn't won in his last three starts, but has been dominant against New York. The right hander is 7-0 against the Mets since signing with Philadelphia in 2010.
Collins will counter with lefty Jonathan Niese, fresh off the worst start of her performance on May 1 against the Houston Astros. He lasted just three innings in that outing, giving up five runs on six hits.
You can see all the action Monday locally on SNY or listen on WFAN 660 with first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m.