CHICAGO - Sometimes, Jeremy Hefner deserves the blame. Sometimes the responsibility falls more on an offense that doesn't score enough runs, or on a bullpen that gives up far too many.
But regardless of who's at fault, the righthander owns the dubious distinction of pitching in nine games this season and seeing the Mets win none.
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Hefner appeared most culpable for the latest defeat, an unsightly 8-2 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field, where he surrendered all four of his runs in the fourth inning. Opposing pitcher Scott Feldman -- who entered play hitting .118 -- lined a two-run double shortly before manager Terry Collins decided he'd seen enough.
"I want to win," said Hefner, who has pitched better than his 0-5 record and 5.00 ERA. "I want the team to win. Obviously, I didn't do that today. So we've got to make some adjustments and be better in the next one."
Perhaps most importantly for Hefner, there will be a next one. Although the Mets have a day off Thursday, Collins said he will give his starters an extra day's rest instead of skipping Hefner.
"He'll be OK," Collins said. "We'll get him some wins when we start swinging better."
Robert Carson, who has been relegated to long relief, allowed one hit in two innings Saturday. But that lone hit by Cubs slugger Anthony Rizzo cleared the ivy-covered fence in rightfield.
The Mets hoped Carson would give Collins another option against dangerous lefties. But he has allowed seven homers in just 11 innings, the latest coming to Rizzo, a lefthanded batter.
"It's just inexperience right now," Collins said of Carson, who has a 10.64 ERA in eight appearances since his recall from Triple-A Las Vegas.
The Mets have filed an appeal to get one of Matt Harvey's two earned runs Friday changed to an unearned run. If the scoring change goes through, Harvey's ERA will fall from 1.55 to 1.42, which would be third in the National League.