(SportsNetwork.com) - The Pittsburgh Pirates visit the New York Mets on Monday afternoon to begin a three-game series, but the overwhelming reality of the get-togeter at Citi Field is this:
Ike Davis will be booed.
The former Mets first baseman makes his first return to ex-home turf as a member of the Pirates.
Davis hit 19 home runs for the Mets in 2010 and had 32 in 2012, but a statistical plummet last season followed by a slow start in 2014 resulted in a three-player deal that sent him to Pittsburgh in mid-April.
Davis has hit .347 for his new team since an 0-for-19 beginning.
The game is the first in a 10-game road swing for the Pirates, who'll send Brandon Cumpton to the mound as a fill-in for Wandy Rodriguez, who was designated for assignment after his most recent outing.
Cumpton started twice for Pittsburgh and has also spent time at Triple-A Indianapolis this spring. It's his first game against the Mets.
The Mets have lost eight of 11 games and have not scored more than five runs in any of them.
"We realize we're not hitting, we're not scoring runs. When you can win a game, when you can get a big hit - Ruben (Tejada) had a tremendous big hit for us (in Sunday's game against Arizona) - it's a lift," manager Terry Collins said.
Rookie Jacob deGrom makes his third career start.
He was beaten, 4-3, by the Los Angeles Dodgets in his most recent outing on Wednesday.
"DeGrom was real good," Collins said. "The home run balls hurt him. But he changed speeds and used his breaking ball and went back and got a little more when he needed it.'
On Sunday in Pittsburgh, Ian Desmond had two hits and two RBI and Doug Fister allowed just a run in 5 1/3 innings to help the Washington Nationals salvage the finale of a four-game set with the Pirates, 5-2.
Francisco Liriano (0-5) stayed winless on the season after getting roughed up for four runs on six hits and four walks in five innings on the hill.
Neil Walker had three hits for the Pirates, who narrowly missed their first four-game sweep since 2012. Saturday's hero Josh Harrison, who drove in the game-winning run in the seventh inning in that one, had a pair of hits, homered and scored twice in the setback.
In New York, just hours after taking the loss in Game 1 of a doubleheader, Jenrry Mejia redeemed himself and nailed down the save in Game 2. Anthony Recker went 4-for-4 with a run scored and Daisuke Matsuzaka tossed six two-run innings in his first start of the season to help the Mets take a 4-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the series finale.
Daniel Murphy had three hits and an RBI for the Mets, who had lost four of five at home. Bobby Abreu had two hits and an RBI in the triumph. Matsuzaka (2-0) struck out six, yielding just the two runs on three hits after pitching out of the bullpen in his first 14 appearances this season.
Three Mets relievers combined for two scoreless innings before Mejia nailed down his third save of the season. Earlier in the day, Mejia allowed an unearned run in the ninth inning that proved to be the difference in a 2-1 loss.
Pittsburgh was 5-2 versus the Mets last season.