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NYM@FLA: Bonifacio extends hit streak to 22 games

The hits keep coming for Florida's Emilio Bonifacio.

On Saturday, the speedy third baseman extended his streak to 22 games with an infield single in the sixth inning against the Mets. It's the longest hitting streak by a Marlins player this season and the longest active streak in the Major Leagues.

It will be up to Mets starter Dillon Gee and Co. to end Bonifacio's run Sunday. And Gee, who is making his first career start against Florida, just might be the right man for the job.

The right-hander earned his ninth win on Monday, tossing seven innings and allowing three hits and two runs. He struck out two and walked two batters for the second consecutive start.

"He saved us when we were looking for a fifth starter when Chris Young went down," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "We needed a fifth guy, and as well as Chris Young was pitching, we were hoping that Dillon would fill in, and he's not only done that, he's picked up where Chris had left off."

Gee is 1-2 with a 5.03 ERA in his last three starts.

"I have all the confidence in the world when he takes the mound [that] we're going to look up in the seventh inning with little number of runs and a well-pitched game because he does it," Collins said. "He just knows himself, knows how to pitch and uses pitches, and when his location's on he can get you out."

The Marlins will counter with Anibal Sanchez, who is seeking his first win since June 10, a span of eight starts. The Venezuelan right-hander is 0-2 in that stretch, including a loss to the Padres to open the homestand. He threw 119 pitches and gave up two earned runs in six innings.

"I felt good. I'm healthy," Sanchez said. "That's most important right now. [The Padres] had a lot of foul balls off me."

In his career against the Mets, Sanchez is 4-4 with a 4.53 ERA in nine starts.

Mets: Santana taking a careful road to return
The Mets' rotation might get an unexpected boost sometime this summer. On Friday, Johan Santana threw over 40 pitches that totaled three innings as part of a simulated game, and he's scheduled for another 60-pitch bullpen session Sunday.

Santana's focus over the past few weeks has been building up his strength and hopes to be back before the end of the season. He has missed the entire season as he recovers from surgery to repair an anterior capsule in his left shoulder.

"I want to pitch right now. I want to be here, but reality is that I can't," he said. "This is a long process, and we're taking everything very carefully."

Marlins: McKeon shakes up lineup
Marlins manager Jack McKeon dropped Logan Morrison from third to sixth in the batting order "just to change things." Mike Stanton was moved up to fifth.

"[Morrison's] done a good job," McKeon said. "He went through a few games where he rolled over on a few. We've seen him do that before, and then he busts loose. He could be a catalyst for a club."

Morrison went 2-for-4 with a home run Saturday.

Gaby Sanchez, who batted in the three-hole Saturday, went 3-for-4 with a double and two home runs. He also hit a home run Friday.

"He's swinging the bat much better," McKeon said. "That's one of the reasons why I moved him back up, and he provides a little protection for Hanley [Ramirez]."

• Chris Coghlan has resumed his rehab assignment after having a setback to his injured left knee and was scheduled to play for Class A Jupiter.

The 2009 NL Rookie of the Year went on the DL with left knee inflammation on June 20.

Worth noting
• New York's Carlos Beltran has reached base safely in 28 straight games.

• Morrison has been taking some grounders at first base, in case he's part of a double-switch and he has to move to first, his natural position.

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