Expos return to Olympic Stadium

Home, sweet, home. But for how long?

The Montreal Expos are back from a 14-game road trip and are now ready to settle into the comfy confines of Olympic Stadium for what is probably their final homestand in franchise history.

The Expos will play nine games at 'the Big O' before heading to New York for the final three games of the season.

Right now, the imminent sale of the franchise down south is the last thing from the players' minds. For the first time since April 14 the Expos have a chance to climb out of the National League East cellar.

The Expos sit two games behind the fourth-place Mets.

Livan Hernandez (10-14) will start the opener for Montreal. The Expos' No. 1 starter has been a workhorse for the team all season, recording his eighth complete game last Thursday in a losing effort.

Hernandez, who has pitched at least eight innings 14 times this season, has lost four of his last five decisions.

He's 7-8 in 20 career games against the Mets.

If there's been one good story for the Expos this season, it's been the play of Tony Batista. The Expos' third baseman won the National League's player of the week award for hitting four homers and 15 runs-batted in.

With 103 RBIS on the season, he's just the ninth Expo to each the magical 100-RBI plateau in franchise history.

The Mets will counter with Al Leiter (9-7). The crafty lefty has been struggling of late, going 0-3 in his last six starts. He's trying to avoid tying a career-high losing streak. He lost four straight in 1993 while pitching with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Mets centre-fielder Mike Cameron is hitless (0-for-13) in his last three games and is six hits shy of 1,000 for his career.

The Mets have lost eight of their last 10 road games.

with files from Sports Network