Diamondbacks-Mets Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated June 30, 2013
Wade Miley is the last starter to win a game for the Arizona Diamondbacks, but that came nearly four weeks ago. The offense isn't providing much help. Miley may need to overcome the Diamondbacks' sluggish bats if he's going to help them win for just the second time in 10 tries on the road Monday night against the New York Mets. Miley (4-7, 4.55 ERA) allowed three runs in 6 2-3 innings of a 10-3 win at St. Louis on June 5, and that's the last time Arizona got a victory from a starter. The rotation has since gone 0-10 with a 5.15 ERA in 22 games, the majors' longest streak without a starter winning since San Diego went 25 straight from April 17-May 14, 2009. Those struggles continued over the weekend, with the starters compiling a 7.36 ERA while the Diamondbacks (42-39) were swept in a three-game series at Atlanta. Trevor Cahill was the culprit in Sunday's 6-2 loss, surrendering all of the Braves' runs in 4 1-3 innings. "We didn't really throw good, quality strike ones, and they pounded those," manager Kirk Gibson said. Arizona's offense isn't giving the rotation much margin for error. The bats have backed the starters with an average of 2.4 runs over 22 games - 1.9 while dropping six of the past seven. They're hitting .225 during a 1-8 stretch on the road. Paul Goldschmidt, who tops the Diamondbacks with 19 homers and a .306 average, has batted .200 without homering in his last 13 road games. "It's no one individual," Gibson said. "It's me, it's the coaching staff, the players. We're just not clicking very good right now. We've got to find a way to get it turned around. It's no fun. I'm sure it's not fun to watch, either. We're not going to panic either way. We're going to come in and try to be loose." A four-game series at Citi Field, however, may also be cause for concern since the Diamondbacks have lost five of their last six visits. The rotation is 0-4 with a 5.52 ERA over that span, while the offense has a .212 average - .133 with runners in scoring position. The only win during that stretch came when Miley started May 4, 2012, when he gave up four runs in six innings while not getting a decision in a 5-4 victory. The left-hander is 0-2 with a 3.42 ERA in four starts since his last win, getting a combined nine runs of support. He allowed three runs - two earned - in seven innings while the offense was held to four hits in a 3-2 loss at Washington on Wednesday. The Mets (33-45) are trying to rebound from their own defeat to the Nationals, falling 13-2 on Sunday after splitting the first two games of the series. They've dropped eight of 11 at home behind a .204 average that has undermined the rotation's 2.94 ERA. David Wright, though, is hitting .440 over the past 13 home games, spiking his season average there 78 points to .298. Scheduled starter Shaun Marcum (1-9, 5.08) hasn't had the same kind of success at Citi Field, going 0-5 with a 5.60 ERA in six games. However, the right-hander should have renewed confidence for this matchup, coming off his first victory of the year in 12 games - including 10 starts. He yielded four hits in eight innings of Wednesday's 3-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox. Marcum is 1-0 while allowing seven runs in 11 innings over two career starts versus Arizona.
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