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Ace-off: Harvey and Ryu match up in Los Angeles

It's hard to look at Tuesday's marquee matchup between the Mets and Dodgers at Chavez Ravine and not get excited.

That's because it will showcase a pair of baseball's top young pitchers -- New York right-hander Matt Harvey and Los Angeles left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu.

However, Harvey is trying not to overthink things.

"I look at it more the way that we're playing as a team now. We're playing really good baseball, and I take pride going out there every fifth day and trying to win. It's an important game, an important series for us. Obviously, the intensity has picked up a little bit as a whole for all of us," Harvey said. "We want to make a good run here. Having a good August is something at the break that we wanted to do, and it's important. I think every start from now on for me is important."

Harvey (9-3, 2.09 ERA) is coming off his first career complete game and shutout on Thursday against the Rockies, holding them to just four hits. Since the All-Star break, Harvey has a 0.91 ERA, which leads the Majors.

However, the right-hander will have his work cut out for him with a Dodgers squad that has won six straight games and is unbeaten in its last 15 series.

"I'm anxious to see anybody against that lineup," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "They're playing great. They've got a lot of ways to beat you."

One of those ways has been with great starting pitching, something Ryu knows a lot about this season. Ryu (11-3, 2.99 ERA) has tossed six or more innings in 18 of his 22 starts this season, including 16 quality starts. He's also unbeaten in his last six starts, going 5-0 with a 3.47 ERA since July 5.

While he picked up his fourth straight win in St. Louis on Thursday, holding the Cardinals to one run on five hits in seven innings, Ryu has performed even better at home. He's gone 5-1 with a 1.83 ERA in 10 starts at Dodger Stadium this season.

"He seems to rise to the occasion every time," said Dodgers manager Don Mattingly.

Mets: Davis to get more starts vs. lefties
• Collins said on Monday that he plans to start Ike Davis against left-handed pitching this week.

That's something that hasn't happened since the first baseman returned from the Minors in July.

Collins' mind was changed after watching Davis grind out a walk on Sunday against D-backs left-hander Joe Thatcher. He wants to reward Davis with additional playing time.

"It's going to be nice if I do get a start to get three at-bats against a [lefty], instead of just a random reliever that you don't get to see that much," Davis said. "I'm looking forward to it."

Dodgers: Sore ankle slows Kemp's progress
• Los Angeles center fielder Matt Kemp walked with a slight limp on Monday as he took part in agility drills on the field at Dodger Stadium.

Working out with Stan Conte, vice president, medical services, Kemp tested the ankle by running in a straight line and then stopping. Mattingly said Kemp ran at 60 to 70 percent.

"Stan is looking for a little bit more explosion," Mattingly said. "We've still got to get to the point where he's able to stop and turn. That puts pressure on your ankle."

Kemp sprained his ankle in an awkward slide at home plate July 21 against the Nationals.

Worth noting
• Dodgers right fielder Yasiel Puig has drawn 12 walks in his last 12 games after getting only 11 free passes in his first 49 games.

• Mets right-hander Jeremy Hefner had his sore right elbow examined Monday at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, but will not know whether the Mets will place him on the disabled list until after an examination Wednesday.

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