Bobby Abreu is giving the New York Mets some signs of life at the plate.
Still, their pitchers have been the key behind their home success against the San Diego Padres.
Abreu may get a chance to build on his best performance in a Mets uniform, while Zack Wheeler tries to win at home for the first time in 10 months Saturday.
Article continues below ...
New York (30-37) is among the worst offensive teams in the majors, batting .233 with 47 homers, a .348 slugging percentage and 4.0 runs per game. The Mets have been even worse while losing eight of 10, mustering a .221 average and .328 slugging percentage.
Abreu, however, is 6 for 10 with three RBIs in three games, matching his total of hits from his previous 11 games with five coming as a pinch-hitter.
"Anytime they need me there, I’m always going to be ready to play the game," Abreu said.
The 40-year-old right fielder replaced Curtis Granderson (calf) in Friday’s series opener, and went 4 for 4 with two RBIs in a 6-2 win over San Diego (28-39).
"Representing the 40s. When we go to the field, we throw everything that we’ve got," said Abreu, alluding to Friday’s winner Bartolo Colon. "Been playing this game for a long time, so pretty much we know what we have to do."
The Mets have won six of the past seven home meetings with the Padres, thanks in large part to a 1.29 ERA – 1.07 from the starting rotation.
Wheeler’s only appearance against them included a career-high 12 strikeouts, yielding one run in six innings of a 4-1 road win Aug. 15.
The right-hander (2-6, 4.19 ERA), though, is 0-4 with a 3.32 ERA in seven home starts dating to a win over Atlanta on Aug. 20.
He was also roughed up at San Francisco on Sunday, giving up four runs and six hits with six strikeouts and two walks while hitting a batter in 3 2-3 innings of a 6-4 loss.
The Padres, though, are last in the majors with a .215 batting average, and are hitting .159 with seven runs during a season-high five-game slide.
Jesse Hahn (0-1, 9.82) will try to snap the skid, and gain some inspiration from family and friends in attendance as he takes the mound roughly two hours from his hometown of Norwich, Connecticut.
"It’s good to get an opportunity to throw in front of all these people who have been supporting me for so long," said Hahn, a high-school teammate of injured Mets ace Matt Harvey. "And it’s my second start, so I’m going to feel really calm and relaxed."
The right-hander struggled in his major league debut June 3, giving up four runs and two homers with five strikeouts in 3 2-3 innings of a 4-1 loss to Pittsburgh.
He went 2-1 with a 2.11 ERA in 11 games – eight starts – for Double-A San Antonio. Pitching for the Missions on Monday, he allowed one earned run in season-high 5 2-3 innings.
"I tired out in my last start a little bit, so I thought they’d send me down to build up some more stamina. I was able to go up to almost six innings my last start (in Double-A), and luckily I got the call again," Hahn said. "I just had so much adrenaline and so much excitement the first time. I think now I know what’s going on. I know the game a little better now and I think I’ll be more relaxed."