It's rare for two interdivision teams to hook up for more than two series' in a regular season, but that's what the Reds (69-46) and New York Mets (55-60) will be doing beginning on Tuesday at Great American Ball Park. Cincy returns home riding a 3-game winning streak that helped salvage a 3-4 road trip through Milwaukee and Chicago. Meanwhile, the third-place Metropolitans are coming off a homestand in which they lost five of six to the likes of Miami and Atlanta and are hoping to turn their fortunes around against the first-place Reds.
Here are 10 things you need to know about the series at GABP:
1) All games are slated to begin at approximately 7:10et.
2) Here are the probable pitching matchups:
Tuesday: CIN Mat Latos (10-3, 3.81) vs NYM Chris Young (3-6, 4.87)
Wednesday: CIN Mike Leake (4-7. 4.51) vs NYM R.A. Dickey (15-3, 2.72)
Thursday: CIN Homer Bailey (10-7, 4.08) vs NYM Matt Harvey (1-3, 3.63)
3) It will mark the last meeting between the two foes during the regular season. The Reds lead the 2012 series, 4-1.
4) New York enters play on Monday 16.0 games off the pace in the National League East, and 9.5 games back in the Wild Card.
5) Cincinnati enters play on Monday with a 4.5 game lead over second-place Pittsburgh and 7.0 games over third-place St. Louis.
6) It's a tale of two very different bullpens. The Reds 'pen leads all of MLB with an ERA of 2.66 while the Mets bullpen ERA of 4.99 ranks dead last (30th).
7) Dickey, Wednesday's probable pitcher for the Mets, currently leads the league in WHIP (1.00), complete games (4), is tied for the lead in wins (15) and strikeouts (166), and is fourth in ERA (2.72), quality starts (18), K/BB (4.61) and BAA (.217).
8) No MLB team has more pinch-hits in 2012 than New York's 49. However, they also own the second-worst fielding percentage in the NL at .981.
9) The Mets swept a 4-game series over the Reds in 2011 at GABP. It was their first 4-game sweep in Cincinnati...ever.
10) Cincy's all-time record against the Mets is 306-260.