video thumbnail

PHI@LAD: Hamels allows just two runs in 2014 debut

Through 20 innings in this series, the Mets and Phillies are separated by two runs.

Philadelphia has managed to steal two one-run victories over the Mets this weekend, and the Phillies will send Cole Hamels to the mound Sunday in search of a rare road sweep. The Phillies are 11-9 on the road this season, and the Mets have managed an 8-10 record so far at Citi Field.

Jon Niese will get the ball for the Mets, and he'll be trying to continue an impressive streak. The left-hander has completed at least six innings in five straight starts, and he's yet to allow more than three earned runs in any start this season. Hamels, meanwhile, will go into Sunday's game seeking his first victory, and he's allowed at least five earned runs in two straight starts.

The Mets lost their first three games of the season, but then they put together a solid stretch of play and ended April with a 15-11 record. New York has lost five straight and eight of its last nine games -- with five of those defeats coming by one run -- and is looking for a reversal of fortune Sunday.

"We've struggled offensively from the start," said manager Terry Collins. "What's surprising is we've pitched so well and given ourselves so many good chances. Getting off to the way the game started [Saturday] night and fighting back, we've just been unable to get those extra runs added on. ... We've still got a long way. We are what we are because we haven't hit, and we're going to start hitting."

The Phillies, meanwhile, came to New York on the heels of being swept in four games by the Blue Jays, and the Phils' two straight victories have allowed them to pass the Mets in the standings.

Third baseman David Wright has four RBIs in this series, and he homered Saturday to break the biggest drought of his career. Wright had gone 33 games and 136 at-bats between home runs before going deep, as his only other homer this season came against Washington on Opening Day.

Phillies: Rollins chasing club history
It's only a matter of time before Jimmy Rollins owns the Philadelphia record book. Rollins ranks in the top 10 of nearly every offensive category in Philadelphia's storied history, and he's 26 hits away from becoming the team's all-time hit king. The shortstop has 2,209 hits, fourth all time for the Phillies.

Rollins, playing in his 15th season with the team, singled twice and homered Saturday night. The veteran is two hits away from tying Hall of Famer Big Ed Delahanty on the Philadelphia hit list, and after that, only Hall of Famers Richie Ashburn (2,217) and Mike Schmidt (2,234) remain in front of him.

Mets: Campbell to see time against lefties
Rookie infielder Eric Campbell made his big league debut and drove in a run in Saturday's loss, and Collins said he'll likely see playing time against left-handed pitchers. Campbell is expected to start against Hamels and may get a chance to play twice against the Yankees.

Campbell, 27 years old, batted .355 for Triple-A Las Vegas, and he reached base safely in 31 of his 33 games. The Mets are hoping his hot streak will carry over to the Majors, but Campbell, who plays second base and both infield and outfield corners, will have to hit to earn playing time.

"He's going to have to get used to some stuff," said Collins. "When you don't play [every day] ... your expectations have to be kept down a little bit because you're just not getting consistent at-bats."

Worth noting
• The Mets have held a lead in 29 of their first 35 games, and if you exclude the four times they've been shut out, they've held a lead in all but two games.

• The Mets have scored in the first inning in six of their last eight games, and they have more first-inning runs (27) than all but one other National League team. Colorado has 33 first-inning runs.

• Philadelphia is 9-2 in weekend games this season.

MLB.com Comments