Series: Game 1 of 4

NY Mets leads 1-0 (as of 8/21)

Game 1: Friday, August 21
NY Mets4
Game 2: Saturday, August 22
NY Mets1
Game 3: Sunday, August 23
NY Mets7
Game 4: Monday, August 24
NY Mets2

Phillies 2

(69-50, 37-21 away)

Mets 4

(57-65, 34-29 home)

    7:10 PM ET, August 21, 2009

    Citi Field, New York, New York 

    123456789 R H E
    PHI 100001000 2 10 0
    NYM 02200000 - 4 12 0

    W: M. Pelfrey (9-8)

    L: C. Hamels (7-8)

    S: F. Rodriguez (27)

    Phillies-Mets Preview


    Ryan Howard and Jayson Werth have been leading a Philadelphia Phillies team laden with power. Gary Sheffield is the one significant home run threat left on the New York Mets, but even he might be gone soon.

    Howard and the Phillies' surging lineup look to win their fifth straight game and sixth in a row against the makeshift Mets on Friday night.

    Late-season games between Philadelphia (69-49) and New York (56-65) have played a large role in determining the NL East winner in recent years, but this three-game series holds no such importance. The Phillies have a 14 1/2-game lead over the Mets, who have had their playoff hopes dashed due to injuries.

    Philadelphia has been particularly sharp of late, winning eight of nine. The Phillies are coming off a three-game sweep of Arizona, hitting three home runs in Thursday night's 12-3 victory in the finale.

    It was yet another big game at the plate for Philadelphia, which has hit 22 home runs in its last 10 games and leads the NL with 171.

    Howard has six homers in his last seven games, giving him 32, and Werth has connected five times in his last five contests to bring his season total to 28.

    "They come in bunches," Werth said. "Sometimes you feel good and your swing is good. But sometimes the opposite side of the coin is true, too."

    New York, meanwhile, has 71 home runs and has failed to hit one in its last five games against Philadelphia, losing each of those contests. The Mets trail the season series 6-5.

    With Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, Carlos Delgado and David Wright all out with injuries, New York has little power left in its lineup. The Mets have scored three runs or fewer in three of their last four games, including a 3-2 loss to Atlanta on Thursday night.

    Sheffield is the most productive remaining healthy player New York has left, hitting a team-high 10 homers, but he pulled himself out of the starting lineup before facing the Braves after reportedly being rebuffed by general manager Omar Minaya when asking about a contract extension.

    "He asked for a day off to kind of clear some thoughts and things," New York manager Jerry Manuel said.

    There is speculation that the 40-year-old left fielder may be dealt to a contender. Sheffield has said he's not sure if he'll be with the Mets the rest of the season.

    Sheffield has never faced Cole Hamels (7-7, 4.69 ERA), who will start the series opener for the Phillies. Philadelphia has lost the left-hander's last three starts.

    Hamels gave up two runs and walked four in six innings as Philadelphia lost 4-3 to Atlanta on Saturday. He had an 8.71 ERA in losing his previous two outings.

    Hamels is 1/3 with a 4.19 ERA in seven starts against the Mets.

    New York will counter with Mike Pelfrey (6-6, 4.75), who is 2-1 with a 3.24 ERA in four starts versus the Phillies.

    The right-hander pitched well in his last start but didn't receive a decision in New York's 3-2 win over San Francisco on Sunday. He allowed two runs in 7 1/3 innings after giving up eight in 11 innings in losing his previous two starts.

    Former Phillies closer Billy Wagner, who had Tommy John surgery on Sept. 10, is back in the Mets' bullpen after being activated from the disabled list Thursday. The left-hander made his first appearance since Aug. 2, 2008, striking out two in a perfect eighth inning.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

     PhiladelphiaNew York
    Current StreakW1W3
    Last 104-65-5

    Pitching Matchup

    PhiladelphiaNew York
    C. Hamels
    10-11, 4.32 ERA

    Last Game:
    10/3 vs FLA
    3.0 IP, 3 ER
    Dec = Loss
    M. Pelfrey
    10-12, 5.03 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/29 at WAS
    7.0 IP, 3 ER
    Dec = ND

    Gameday Lineups

    NO.PhiladelphiaNew York
    1. J. Rollins, SS A. Pagan, CF
    2. S. Victorino, CF L. Castillo, 2B
    3. C. Utley, 2B G. Sheffield, LF
    4. R. Howard, 1B J. Francoeur, RF
    5. J. Werth, RF F. Tatis, 3B
    6. R. Ibanez, LF D. Murphy, 1B
    7. G. Dobbs, 3B O. Santos, C
    8. C. Ruiz, C A. Hernandez, SS
    9. C. Hamels, P M. Pelfrey, P