Although they have been lifted by a recent stretch of strong pitching, the New York Mets might have a difficult time continuing that at Dodger Stadium.
Mark Ellis had a home run, double and three RBIs as Los Angeles (67-50) increased its NL West lead over Arizona to a season-high 7 1-2 games with Sunday's 8-2 victory over visiting Tampa Bay to complete a three-game sweep and extend its winning streak to five."When you rattle off a streak like the one we're on right now, it's probably a little more than luck," winning pitcher Clayton Kershaw said. "We're a pretty good team right now, and it's a lot of fun coming to the yard every day and winning games. I think the guys in this clubhouse realize that we've got a pretty good opportunity here that we don't want to waste."
Ellis, who has six hits in his last two games, went 4 for 5 with two homers in a 7-2 win at Citi Field on April 23 to help Los Angeles take two of three in that series.
The Dodgers, who are a major league-best 37-8 since June 22, are averaging 7.6 runs while hitting .366 during their current winning streak. Carl Crawford (11 for 22), Yasiel Puig (15 for 34) and Skip Schumacher (9 for 14) have keyed the most recent offensive charge.
The Mets (54-61), who have won five of six, are hoping Mejia (1-1, 1.96 ERA) can cool off the Dodgers in the opener of this three-game set. The right-hander has allowed four earned runs in three starts since being called up, striking out 18 in 18 1-3 innings.
"We know we're going into Los Angeles," Mets manager Terry Collins told the league's official website. "We said it last week - this, for me, is a huge road trip for us as a team. We've got to have some success. We're going in to play the hottest team in baseball. It's not going to be easy."
Mejia did not get a decision Tuesday against Colorado, giving up two runs while fanning seven in 5 1-3 innings of a 3-2 victory. He's contributed to a stretch in which the staff has a 2.19 ERA the past six games.
Los Angeles starter Ricky Nolasco (8-9, 3.65) seeks his third straight win, but hasn't made it out of the sixth inning in his last five starts. He lasted five innings for the second straight outing Wednesday, giving up three runs - all unearned because of his three-base throwing error - and seven hits in a 13-4 victory at St. Louis.
The right-hander is 3-1 with a 3.00 ERA since being acquired in a trade with Miami on July 6.
Nolasco, however, is winless in his last six starts against the Mets, going 0-2 with a 4.30 ERA. He did not factor in the decision in his only matchup with them this year, surrendering three runs over 5 1-3 innings in a 7-3 loss at Citi Field on April 6.
Ike Davis went 2 for 3 off Nolasco in that win and has gone 7 for 13 with four doubles over his last six games to raise his average to a season-high .205.
The Mets have won six of eight at Chavez Ravine since 2011.
|Jerry Hairston Jr.||1||.000||0||0||0||0||0||.500||.500||.000|
|New York Mets|
|August 03, 2013||David Wright||15-Day DL||Strained right hamstring|
|August 02, 2013||David Wright||Day-to-Day||Strained right hamstring|
|July 31, 2013||Bobby Parnell||15-Day DL||Neck stiffness|
|July 30, 2013||Josh Edgin||15-Day DL||Ribcage stress fracture|
|July 26, 2013||Justin Turner||Day-to-Day||Sore right shoulder|
|July 25, 2013||Eric Young||Day-to-Day||Left game - sore right knee|
|Los Angeles Dodgers|
|August 04, 2013||Hanley Ramirez||Day-to-Day||Jammed right shoulder|
|August 03, 2013||Yasiel Puig||Day-to-Day||Left hand contusion|
|July 30, 2013||Brian Wilson||15-Day DL||Recovery from right elbow surgery|
|July 23, 2013||Jose Dominguez||15-Day DL||Left quad strain|
|July 22, 2013||Matt Kemp||15-Day DL||Sprained left ankle|
|July 13, 2013||Yasiel Puig||Day-to-Day||Left game - sore left hip|
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Two runs down? No sweat for these confident Los Angeles Dodgers .
Adrian Gonzalez scored the go-ahead run on Yasiel Puig 's sacrifice fly that capped a three-run sixth inning, helping the Dodgers beat the New York Mets 4-2 on Monday night for their sixth straight victory.
The deficit was small compared to Friday, when the Dodgers rallied from six runs down to beat Tampa Bay on a walkoff.
"It's a special group. Hopefully, special things can happen," said Nick Punto , who homered in the seventh. "We have a lot of talent on this team and things are clicking."
The Dodgers improved to 38-8 since June 22, the franchise's best 46-game stretch in the modern era that began in 1900. The 1899 Brooklyn Superbas had 38 wins in several 46-game stretches between April and June of that year.
Overall, it's the best 46-game run for a major league team since the 2001 Oakland Athletics went 38-8 between Aug. 2 and Sept. 27.
"The confidence is really high," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "Our pitching has been great."
Gonzalez went 3 for 4 and drove in a run for the seventh straight game, the longest RBI streak since Adrian Beltre 's eight-game run from July 17-24, 2004.
Ricky Nolasco (9-9) extended his winning streak to three. The right-hander allowed two runs and seven hits in 6 1/3 innings. He struck out two and walked two, retiring 11 consecutive batters during one stretch.
"I made a lot of good pitches," he said. "A lot of their hits were well-placed."
Mets catcher John Buck played with Nolasco in Miami.
"He never gives up and never gives in to hitters," he said. "He executes pitches when he needs to, and keeps the team in the ballgame, and that's the thing I remember from him when I was there."
Kenley Jansen got the final four outs to earn his 18th save in 21 chances. He has retired 32 of the last 33 batters he has faced with 18 strikeouts since July 23.
Jenrry Mejia (1-2) gave up three runs - two earned - and six hits in six innings as the Mets' two-game winning streak ended. The right-hander struck out four and walked none. He retired his first eight batters.
New York had won five of six.
Ahead 2-0, Mejia allowed three straight singles to open the sixth, capped by Gonzalez's RBI single over the head of leaping shortstop Omar Quintanilla .
"We actually tried to go down and away to him, and I think it just rode up and in a little bit on him and missed the spot," Buck said. "It was one of those things where he just jammed him in the right spot."
Center fielder Juan Lagares scooped up the ball and fired it to third, but it went off the glove of Wilmer Flores and into the Dodgers' dugout as Gonzalez took third.
That allowed Mark Ellis to score from first behind Carl Crawford , tying the game 2-2.
Puig followed with a sacrifice fly to left field that scored Gonzalez, making it 3-2.
Punto homered for just the second time this season, extending the Dodgers' lead to 4-2 in the seventh.
Danny DeVito came on the field after the game wearing Punto's No. 7 jersey.
"I didn't get it back, either," said Punto, who met the actor for the first time. "I've never seen someone so excited. He said, `It felt amazing for me. It must have felt good for you."'
New York had the tying runs on first and second in the eighth with two outs. Jansen came in and retired pinch-hitter Justin Turner on a called third strike.
The Dodgers got out of a jam in the seventh, when the Mets had runners on first and second with two outs. Daniel Murphy lined out to right, and Puig caught the ball over his shoulder while running toward the wall.
"They've been amazing," Nolasco said about the bullpen. "To get out of a bases-loaded jam in the seventh was great."
The Mets led 2-0 in the second on RBI singles by Buck and Quintanilla after Nolasco gave up four consecutive singles to open the inning. Quintanilla's 17 RBI set a single-season career high.
Notes: Jansen had his second four-out save of the season, with the other coming at Colorado on July 3. ... The Dodgers' six-game winning streak ties their season high for the third time. ... Nolasco has faced the Mets more than any other team in his career, with 26 games and 24 starts, and 139 2/3 innings pitched against them. ... Mets LF Eric Young cartwheeled over the wall trying to catch a foul ball by Punto one swing before his homer.