It's also good to be home. After a 12-game road trip against the Athletics, Mariners, Phillies and Yankees, the Mets start a six-game homestand against the Phillies and Nationals on Tuesday. It will be the first game at Shea Stadium since June 12.
The Mets are 5-3 against the Phillies and just took two of three at Citizens Bank Ballpark. The Nationals have risen to the top of the National League East. The Mets badly need to play well against them now rather than risk desperation later.
"I think we're getting there," manager Willie Randolph said. "I'm seeing certain things -- like how we handle situational hitting -- that lead me to believe we might be turning a corner."
But Martinez was dominant otherwise. He allowed two runs on six hits over eight innings as the Mets beat the Yankees 6-4.
Martinez (8-2) walked two, struck out three and retired 16 of the last 18 batters he faced.
"It was typical Pedro," Mets manager Willie Randolph said. "He was awesome as usual."
In two games against the Yankees this season, Martinez has allowed three runs over 15 innings.
Once Martinez got a 5-2 lead, he worked quickly and confidently. The Yankees, who have had success in the past driving up his pitch count, made him throw only 105 over eight innings.
"If I get the lead, I'm going to make it happen," Martinez said. "I was in command of the game."
Reyes was 3-for-5, stole three bases and scored a run as the Mets beat the Phillies 4-3.
"I put Jose back in the leadoff spot. I had a good feeling. For some reason he sees the ball real well here," Mets manager Willie Randolph said. "When he's getting his hits, he looks like a leadoff guy. He gets us going."
Reyes is 9-for-23 since Randolph hit him second against Seattle on Saturday. He had been struggling to get on base prior to that.
"Maybe that helped me get going, I don't know," Reyes said. "I'm starting to feel good at the plate again."
Reyes has stolen 22 bases in 28 attempts. The three on Thursday matched a career high.
The trade of Kazmir for Zambrano still upsets a large segment of Mets fans though it was completed nearly a year ago. But Zambrano can't be blamed for what happened on Wednesday.
He pitched six strong innings of his own. But a lack of run support and poor bullpen worked doomed him again as the Phillies beat the Mets 8-4.
The Mets, now 7 1/2 games out of first, haven't won consecutive games since June 6 and 7.
"No consistency," said Cliff Floyd, who homered for the Mets. "We can't put good games together. This has been tough to go through."
Zambrano has, compiling a 2.89 ERA over his last six starts. But he is 1-3 in those games as the Mets have scored only 14 runs.
"I don't think about those things. I just worry about the game I am pitching that day," he said. "I never look at the past. I just and try and pitch the best I can."
BY THE NUMBERS: 9 -- Number of home runs Mike Piazza has had as a DH in interleague games. That is a record for National League players.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "I have nothing but respect for the Yankees, for the organization and for the players. All I want is to beat them when I can. That's all I want. I don't want any enemies." -- RHP Pedro Martinez on his "daddies."