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04/20/11 12:47 AM ET

Ticket redemption offered to fans by Mets

NEW YORK -- The Mets announced that tickets from tonight's game -- marked "Tuesday, April 19 -- Game 8" -- can be redeemed for complimentary tickets to one game between May 30 and June 2 vs. Pittsburgh.

The tickets can only be redeemed in person in advance at the Citi Field Advance Ticket Windows, or prior to the game date selected at the Day of Game Ticket Sales Windows.

There were questions about whether Tuesday's game against the Astros would be postponed due to rain, but it was never delayed and started on time. It did rain lightly, but steadily, throughout the evening.

Mets hope to get Pagan back in No. 2 spot

NEW YORK -- With Jason Bay due to return from the disabled list on Thursday, Mets manager Terry Collins said the plan is to eventually move Angel Pagan up to the No. 2 spot in the lineup.

At least, that's the hope.

Pagan has struggled mightily through the first three weeks of the season, batting only .169 with one home run and six RBIs in the team's first 16 games. The center fielder, who hit .290 with 11 home runs and 37 stolen bases last season, has been batting either fifth or sixth lately in Bay's absence.

Collins would ideally like to get Pagan back toward the top of the order.

"That's where ultimately I'd like him to be," Collins said. "He's trying way too hard. He's trying to do everything he did last season in the first two weeks of this season."

Pagan had just one hit in 18 at-bats since April 14 before doubling in the second inning Tuesday. Bay has been on the disabled list with a left rib-cage strain since Spring Training and has not played in a regular-season game with the Mets since last July, when he suffered a concussion.

Pagan was one of the bright spots in the Mets' lineup last year, when he batted either first or second most of the time. With shortstop Jose Reyes entrenched in the leadoff spot, Pagan has been shuffled around more this year.

The Mets are just hopeful Pagan can find some more consistency in his stroke.

"I'm trying to get him just to go play, do the little things -- slap the ball around, use that god-given speed he's got, create havoc like he can," Collins said.

Parnell pitching through right finger discomfort

NEW YORK -- Mets reliever Bobby Parnell said he has been pitching through some discomfort in his right middle finger for more than a week. On Tuesday, the pain worsened.

There is no immediate word on what the injury may be -- Parnell considered it a numbness on the tip of his finger that prevents him from properly gripping the ball -- or how long it may keep the right-hander out.

Parnell was evaluated after Tuesday's 6-1 loss, in which he balked in a run and allowed a two-run single in the eighth. Parnell faced four batters, gave up one hit and allowed all three inherited runners to score.

"I'm just having a hard time gripping the baseball," he said. "I don't think it's anything serious or long term. But just in the last week and a half, it's been an ongoing thing and it's not getting any better."

Parnell said he was playing catch in the outfield before a game about a week ago and was practicing throwing a split-fingered fastball. The discomfort began that night.

"I'm not sure if that's what started it," Parnell said. "The doctors looked at it. I'm going to get it looked at a little bit more over the next few days. I don't think it's anything serious. I'm not sure what the total game plan is right now."

In eight games this season, the 26-year-old is 0-1 with a 6.14 ERA, five walks and 11 strikeouts.

"There's a concern that I haven't really seen the real good fastball from him," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "And I'm a little worried about why. I'm going to have him looked at and see if there's any issues health-wise."

Parnell said he is not expecting to get an MRI on the finger but will be reevaluated in the next day or so.

Mets aim to make some noise on homestand

NEW YORK -- Snapping a prolonged losing streak felt good for the Mets on Sunday. Now they're looking to turn the other way.

The Mets have a six-game homestand against two of the National League's bottom-dwelling clubs: the Astros and the D-backs. Both teams are currently in last place in their divisions.

Well, so are the Mets, who have dropped to the bottom of the NL East after losing seven games in a row before winning Sunday.

Sunday's 3-2 win against Atlanta was big for that purpose -- it took some heat off the struggling team. Now, back home for a stretch, the Mets feel this could be an opportunity to regain some ground.

"We've got to get more outings like we saw Sunday -- get deep into games so we can use our bullpen the way they should be used," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "And offensively, we've got to start picking each other up."

Worth noting

Mets outfielder Jason Bay (rib-cage strain) batted third and went 4-for-4 with two home runs for Class A St. Lucie on Tuesday. He is expected to play for St. Lucie again on Wednesday before returning to the Mets on Thursday. ... Scott Hairston got the start in left field for the Mets on Tuesday, mostly because he was 6-for-11 with two home runs in his career against Astros starter Wandy Rodriguez entering the game.

Zach Schonbrun is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.