After struggling in the final two games of their season-opening trip, the New York Mets look forward to a return home.
The Mets hope to avoid a third straight loss Friday in their home opener against the Washington Nationals, who played well at Citi Field last season.
After taking two of three at Florida and winning 7-1 in Tuesday's series opener versus Philadelphia, New York (3-3) was outscored 21-7 while dropping the final two against the Phillies.
Starter Jonathon Niese was roughed up for six runs, and the Mets committed two errors and mustered just seven hits in an 11-0 loss Thursday.
Still, New York won't be sulking while trying to win its second straight home opener.
"We're not down in the dumps right now," first baseman Ike Davis told the Mets' official website.
The Mets have reason to be optimistic. Despite their latest effort, they have scored 31 runs in six games.
"If we play our game, we're going to play very, very well," first-year manager Terry Collins said. "I think our fans are going to have fun watching this team play. We'll go home, regroup and have the people cheering us instead of booing us."
That's only if the Mets can fare better against the Nationals (2-4) than they did in 2010. Though New York finished with 79 wins - 10 more than Washington - the teams split 18 meetings with the Nationals going 5-4 in Flushing.
Davis hit a modest .259 with three homers against Washington as a rookie in 2010, but is batting .348 with a home run and six RBIs this season.
Third baseman David Wright, 6 for 14 with three RBIs at Philadelphia, is batting .333 his last six home games against the Nationals.
Knuckleballer R.A. Dickey will try to win his second straight start against the Nationals when he takes the mound Friday. The right-hander was 1-0 with a 1.89 ERA in three starts versus Washington in 2010
Coming off a career-high 11-win season, Dickey gave up a run and struck out seven in six innings of a 9-2 win at Florida on Sunday.
"When I go out there, I have a pretty high expectation of myself," Dickey said. "I just want to try to meet that expectation every time, regardless of the past or the future. I really try to be in the moment with it."
Washington hopes to build on one of its few positive moments to start the season after winning 5-3 in 11 innings at Florida on Thursday. Jayson Werth hit his first homer as a National and Adam LaRoche snapped a 3-for-23 slump with a two-run shot in the 11th.
"Things that could go wrong have been going wrong,' manager Jim Riggleman said. "(Thursday) a couple of things fell for us the right way.'
Werth is 2 for 14 the last four games, and batting .243 with 23 strikeouts in 18 games at Citi Field.
Jordan Zimmermann takes the ball for Washington against the team he's faced the most during his 24-game career. The right-hander is 1-1 with a 3.54 ERA in four starts versus New York.
Zimmermann give up three runs, four hits and walked three in six innings of an 11-2 loss to Atlanta on Sunday.
The Associated Press News Service
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