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NYM@PHI: Wheeler fans nine over 6 1/3 strong innings

The Mets will host San Diego for a Saturday matinee in the second contest of a three-game series, with both teams desperate to string a few wins together after struggling early in June.

The Padres are mired in a five-game losing streak, their longest of the season, and have lost nine of 11 after being swept by Philadelphia on the road and dropping two of three to both Washington and Pittsburgh at home.

Even after Friday's win, New York has lost eight of its last 10 contests, enduring road sweeps by the Cubs and Giants before returning home to lose two out of three to Milwaukee.

Jesse Hahn will be making his second Major League start after first debuting for the Padres on June 3 against Pittsburgh. He was able to get Andrew McCutchen swinging for his first career strikeout before tiring and allowing a pair of two-run home runs to Neil Walker and Pedro Alvarez.

In his only Minor League start since then, Hahn pitched into the sixth inning for the first time in 2014, allowing five hits and one earned run in 5 2/3 innings.

"It was good to get up to almost six innings," Hahn said. "It's good to build my stamina up, and each start I feel like I get stronger and stronger."

The Mets will pin their hopes with Zack Wheeler (2-6, 4.19 ERA), who has had an up-and-down sophomore season. After holding the Cubs to two hits in 6 2/3 scoreless innings on June 3, he had his shortest start of the season on June 8 against San Francisco.

Hahn and Wheeler had remarkably similar outings their last time out on a Major League mound. Both lasted just 3 2/3 innings while giving up four runs and six hits while walking two. The only difference in their stat line was that Wheeler struck out six hitters while Hahn punched out five.

They'll be looking to rebound against the league's two worst hitting and slugging teams. Entering Friday's game, the Padres were last in batting average (.216) and slugging percentage (.344), while the Mets were 29th in each category (.231 batting average, .345 slugging percentage).

Mets: Granderson dealing with calf soreness
Further hurting New York's offense has been the absence of outfielder Curtis Granderson, who was out of the starting lineup for the second straight game in Friday's series opener with left calf soreness.

He did, however, pinch-hit in the 11th inning of Thursday's loss to the Brewers before being intentionally walked and replaced by a pinch-runner.

"I didn't feel anything negative -- no pops, no snaps, no grabs, nothing like that," Granderson said. "More just an annoyance and a soreness right now, and obviously I've got to run at some point in time -- whether it be on the bases, out of the box or in the outfield -- so if it were something that I could get away with and know I wasn't going to have to do over the course of the game, I would be fine. Swinging and throwing, everything feels good."

His status for Saturday is unknown, but Mets fans are certainly hoping that Granderson will recover quickly. He reached base safely in 24 straight games, the second-longest active streak in MLB. His career-best streak is 28 games.

"I can handle a day or two [of Granderson being out]," said Mets manager Terry Collins. "I don't want three weeks of it."

Collins also said that Eric Young, Jr. is likely to join the team next week after rehabbing with Double-A Binghamton this weekend.

Padres: Leadoff spot up for grabs
Padres manager Bud Black has had no reservations about shaking up his lineup this season to get San Diego's offense going, but has largely kept shortstop Everth Cabrera as the team's table-setter.

That has changed on the team's current road trip, as Cabrera has been slotted in the No. 2 spot while either Will Venable or Chris Denorfia has taken over leadoff duties, depending on the handedness of the opposing starter.

Cabrera snapped out of an 0-for-20 slump against the Phillies on Thursday night, but has still seen his average slide from .252 to .228 since May 28.

Venable, meanwhile, went 4-for-7 with a home run in two starts against Philadelphia. Denorfia went 1-for-4 in his start against the Phillies atop the lineup.

Worth noting
The Mets' 5-1, 13-inning defeat to Milwaukee on Thursday was their 15th last at-bat loss of the season, the most in the Majors.

San Diego is 21-4 when scoring four or more runs this season, but the team has only reached that benchmark once in June. Comments