Mets-Cardinals Preview

The New York Mets continue to be abysmal at the plate, but David Wright is providing some faint hope.

Bartolo Colon is doing more than that on the mound.

With Wright trying to show some offensive consistency, Colon looks to continue his sterling stretch by helping the Mets avoid a sweep in this three-game series with the surging St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday.

New York (31-40) has spiraled to the bottom of the NL East, dropping 11 of 14 games with the offense batting .210 – including .149 with runners in scoring position – and scoring 2.9 runs per contest.

They went 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position while falling 5-2 to St. Louis (39-32) on Tuesday, but Wright hit a homer – his first since May 28 – and added a double. The All-Star third baseman is batting .106 in 14 games, fueling speculation he could be dropped from the No. 3 spot in the order.

"There’s many sleepless nights," Wright said. "I won’t lie and say it’s easy or it doesn’t bother me. I always put a lot of pressure on myself. I know that hitting in the middle of this lineup, a lot of the burden falls on me."

Wright is 11 for 28 (.393) over his last seven games in St. Louis.

Unlike Wright, Colon (6-5, 4.15 ERA) has been superb of late. The 40-year-old right-hander is 4-0 with a 1.78 ERA over his past five starts after going 1-4 with a 7.18 ERA in his previous six.

He was impressive again Friday, allowing two runs and four hits with seven strikeouts in 7 1-3 innings of a 6-2 win over San Diego.

"He was able to throw a sinker to both sides of the plate," catcher Taylor Teagarden told the team’s official website. "Really established his four-seamer fastballs, kind of elevating on guys and throwing it over their barrel and kept them off balance. Weak contact, quick innings.

"That’s what he does."

Colon has won his last two starts against the Cardinals, allowing two runs in 15 innings.

Another strong performance may be needed since New York has a .215 average while dropping 11 of 17 at St. Louis.

That success over the Mets is part of the Cardinals’ 22-3 home record against NL East opponents over the past two years, including 7-1 in 2014 thanks to a 1.75 ERA.

This entire 10-game homestand comes against East teams, and they’ve won the first five against Washington and New York with a four-game set versus Philadelphia to follow.

Lance Lynn (7-4, 3.16) takes the ball looking to win back-to-back starts for the first time since winning his first four of the season. The right-hander is 3-4 with a 3.06 ERA in 10 games since.

He was outstanding in Friday’s 1-0 win over Washington, striking out eight while yielding two hits in eight innings opposite Jordan Zimmermann’s three-hitter. That was a dramatic improvement after Lynn allowed nine runs in 8 1-3 innings while losing his previous two starts.

"When you have stuff like that, that’s why you keep coming back," Lynn said. "It’s like golf. When you hit that drive like 310, that’s why you come back the next time."

Lynn has lost two of three starts against the Mets behind a 3.50 ERA. However, he earned a 6-3 win in his only home start on May 13, 2013, allowing three runs with seven strikeouts and five walks in seven innings.