Things you should know about today's game...
1) Chris Flexen was roughed up for seven runs on nine hits in four innings, including a pair of home runs. The 23-year-old walked two, struck out one and surrendered five runs in the third before recording an out.
2) The Mets jumped out to a 4-1 lead after two innings. Dominic Smith had an RBI single while Nori Aoki had a pair of run-scoring knocks. Juan Lagares singled to drive in a run while Travis d'Arnaud and Brandon Nimmo each tallied an RBI.
3) Aoki went 3-for-4 with a double, two RBIs and scored twice in his second game as a Met. Jose Reyes singled twice, scored two runs and stole two bases while Smith doubled in addition to his RBI single.
News and notes...
The Mets finished their 10-game road trip 3-7 after losing six of the last seven games. New York has dropped the final game in 16 of their last 18 series and has lost six straight at Minute Maid Park.
The last time the Mets were 20 games below .500 on Sept. 3 or earlier was Aug. 7, 1995 (37-57).
Smith finished the three-game series 5-for-13 (.385) with two doubles, a homer and four RBIs.
Reyes has hit safely in nine straight games and is hitting .424 (14-for-33) with 13 runs scored in 10 games since Aug. 13.
Brandon Nimmo walked three times in four plate appearances after earning two free passes in the second game of Saturday's doubleheader. He has 12 walks in his last 12 games.
Flexen (3-4) has surrendered 14 runs, 16 hits and three homers in his last two starts spanning 8 2/3 innings. His ERA in eight Major League starts is 7.85.
The Mets (58-78) return home for a Labor Day matinee against the Phillies (52-84) at Citi Field on Monday afternoon at 1 p.m. on SNY.
Rafael Montero (3-9, 5.12 ERA, 1.68 WHIP) opens the series for New York looking to build off the best start of his career. The 26-year-old blanked the Reds on three hits while striking out eight over a career-high 8 1/3 innings to pick up the win on Wednesday. He has a 2.10 ERA in his last four starts. Montero allowed four runs in 6 1/3 innings during a loss to Philadelphia on July 2.
Mark Leiter Jr. (2-4, 3.88 ERA 1.23 WHIP) toes the rubber for the Phillies in his seventh big league start. The right-hander has lost two of his last three starts despite a 3.38 ERA in that span. Leiter struck out seven and allowed one run in five innings of relief in his only career appearance against the Mets on Aug. 10.