Shaun Marcum has finished five consecutive seasons with a winning record.
The right-hander is still looking for his first win with the New York Mets , however, as he takes the mound against the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night.
"It's been a three-month ordeal for me," said Marcum, signed by the Mets this year after two winning seasons with Milwaukee and three for Toronto.
Marcum (0-9, 5.76 ERA) has lost four straight starts for New York (30-43). A lack of offensive help has been a problem all season, as his 2.43 run support average would be the lowest in the majors if he had thrown enough innings to qualify. However, Marcum hasn't done much to help himself in his last two outings, posting a 9.58 ERA.
He had a season-high four walks and allowed five runs in 4 2-3 innings of last Wednesday's 5-3 loss in Atlanta. It was his shortest start since May 10.
"He's had some rough starts, but he's also pitched very well at times," manager Terry Collins said.
The good news for Marcum is that he's always fared well versus the White Sox, though he hasn't faced them since 2010. All five starts he made against them were Toronto victories as he went 3-0 with a 2.48 ERA. Chicago is the only AL team to which he's never lost besides Texas.
The White Sox (32-42) nearly suffered an ugly loss Tuesday, when Gordon Beckham flubbed a pop-up in the ninth inning to allow the tying run to come home for the Mets. However, Alexei Ramirez 's RBI single in the bottom of the inning gave Chicago a 5-4 win.
"You're at a loss to describe it," manager Robin Ventura said. "At least they gathered together and scored a run in the next inning. But it's just a communication thing, and you got to clean it up."
The White Sox are tied for fifth in the majors with 54 errors, including two in the eighth inning Sunday that helped Kansas City steal a 7-6 victory.
John Danks (1-4, 5.40) also has had a rough go of it. The left-hander hasn't had much help from his teammates, getting 17 runs of support over six starts this season.
Then again, Danks hasn't pitched very well in his last two outings and lost both, recording an 8.18 ERA while opposing batters hit .354. That includes Thursday's 8-4 loss at Minnesota as he surrendered 12 hits and four home runs, both career highs, while giving up six runs in five innings.
"You can't just point out one thing that's gone wrong at this point," said Danks, who has never faced the Mets.
At least he's back at U.S. Cellular Field, where he has a 2.57 ERA on the season compared to 7.29 on the road. Nine of the 10 home runs Danks has allowed have come away from home.
New York's Eric Young snapped a streak of three straight multihit games Tuesday, but he did record a double for the fourth straight game. Prior to Friday, he had gone 15 straight games without an extra-base hit.
|New York Mets|
|June 22, 2013||Lucas Duda||15-Day DL||Strained left intercostal|
|June 21, 2013||Jonathon Niese||15-Day DL||Partially torn left rotator cuff|
|June 20, 2013||Jonathon Niese||Day-to-Day||Left game - left shoulder discomfort|
|June 19, 2013||Scott Atchison||15-Day DL||Right groin strain|
|June 18, 2013||Scott Atchison||Day-to-Day||Left game - sore groin|
|June 17, 2013||Justin Turner||15-Day DL||Intercostal strain|
|Chicago White Sox|
|June 15, 2013||Alejandro De Aza||Day-to-Day||Illness|
|June 05, 2013||Jake Peavy||15-Day DL||Fractured rib - out 4-6 weeks|
|June 04, 2013||Jake Peavy||Day-to-Day||Left game - Rib pain|
|May 30, 2013||Dewayne Wise||15-Day DL||Strained right hamstring|
|May 22, 2013||Chris Sale||Day-to-Day||Left shoulder tendinitis|
|May 02, 2013||Dewayne Wise||Day-to-Day||Stiff neck|
CHICAGO (AP) -- It has taken 11 starts for Shaun Marcum to finally feel like he is a part of the New York Mets .
Marcum pitched eight shutout innings for his first win of the season, and Eric Young Jr. had three hits and drove in a run to lead the Mets to a 3-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night.
Marcum (1-9) won for the first time since Oct. 1, 2012, while pitching for Milwaukee. He avoided becoming the first to start a season 0-10 since St. Louis' Anthony Reyes did it in 2007.
"I wouldn't call it breaking the ice, I'd call it contributing, finally," Marcum said. "It's nice to be able to do that every now and again. The guys played great behind me. Omar (Quintanilla) made some unbelievable plays, David (Wright) made some great play, Bucky (catcher John Buck ) throwing a guy out at second.
"If I didn't have those guys behind me, it probably wouldn't have looked as good as it did."
Marcum improved to 4-0 with a 1.99 in his career against the White Sox.
Marcum had lost his previous four starts and posted a 9.58 ERA in his last two outings. The veteran right-hander, who signed with the Mets during the offseason, faced just three batters over the minimum. He scattered four hits and pitched around two walks and was helped by good defense behind him.
"Everyone has pride in this league," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "You don't get up to the big leagues without have a little bit of an ego and a sense of pride. Nobody likes to look up and see a zero in the win column under their name.
"He knows, we know he doesn't belong there."
Bobby Parnell pitched a perfect ninth for his 13th save in 16 chances.
Chicago's John Danks (1-5) allowed three runs - one earned - on seven hits. He struck out seven and didn't walk anyone in 7 1-3 innings.
Danks was hurt by a key error by Alexei Ramirez in the fifth and two poor throwing decisions by left fielder Dayan Viciedo .
"It's a tough game to lose. It's just as much my fault as anyone else's. It's just the way it goes," Danks said. "Today I just had a focus to keep the ball in the ballpark and try to make them hit it on the ground."
Alexei Ramirez had two of Chicago's four hits.
Danks retired the first nine batters before giving up a leadoff single to Young in the fourth inning. Danks had retired 30 consecutive batters at home, dating to June 8 in a win against Oakland.
In the fifth inning, Josh Satin led off with a single, and one out later moved to third on Andrew Brown 's single with Brown taking second on the throw. Juan Lagares followed with a hard grounder that got past Ramirez's glove at shortstop for an error that scored two runs.
"These guys have been battling all year," Marcum said. "It seems like every time I take the mound, we're down. For the offense to come out and get a couple of runs, and we were able to hold it, it was a team effort."
With two outs, Young added an RBI single to give the Mets a 3-0 lead. Young is on a five-game hitting streak, and has a hit in six of the last seven games since joining the Mets on June 19.
"I think he should be really proud of what he's done here," Collins said. "He's ignited our offense a little bit, I think. He's been getting on and getting in scoring position. I think he's made a big difference for us.
"He's played very well in the outfield, be it left or center. He's brought some energy to us and it's been needed."
White Sox manager Robin Ventura doesn't foresee taking Viciedo out of the lineup despite his struggles in the outfield and at the plate.
"We only have so many guys. It's going to have to happen," Ventura said.
Marcum benefited from a nice defensive inning in the fifth. Second baseman Daniel Murphy took a barehanded flip to turn a double play, and shortstop Omar Quintanilla threw out Tyler Flowers from the outfield grass to end the inning.
In the ninth, Quintanilla made a sliding a stop on Ramirez's ball, turned around and made a long, strong throw for the second out of the inning.
NOTES: Before the game, Mets starter Jeremy Hefner was scheduled to go ahead of the team to Colorado, where he will pitch a makeup game on Thursday. But flight problems changed that plan, and he was to travel with his teammates. Matt Harvey and Dillon Gee flew back to New York to prepare for starts against Washington on Friday and Saturday, respectively. Collins said the rest of the team isn't expected to get back to New York until 4:00 Friday morning. ... The White Sox are 1-4 in their last five interleague games play. The win came over New York on Tuesday. ... Young will be making a quick visit to his former team on Thursday. "It's going to be my first time being on the visiting side when it comes to playing against the Rockies. I'm sure a lot of emotions are going to be involved. I'm very excited. I've been with that organization for nine, almost 10 years, it's my first time going against them."