(David Wright, connecting for a salvation miracle single against Greg Maddux in the first inning)

As we observe Greg Maddux — resembling the schlumpiest version of Matthew Broderick this side of “Election” — laboring through a rough night (the Mets are leading, 4-3 on Xavier Nady’s 4th inning double), Newsday’s David Lennon supplies the following update concerning the state of the Mets pitching staff.

With Pedro Martinez scheduled to start Friday in Atlanta, manager Willie Randolph said today that the Mets will use six pitchers this time through the rotation and then figure out what to do with the spare arm. Mike Pelfrey, John Maine and even Orlando Hernandez all are candidates for the bullpen, but the decision could come down to a variety of factors. Maine seems best suited for the bullpen, but he pitched a four-hit shutout on Saturday, and could be more valuable as a starter. If Pelfrey becomes the odd man out, the Mets would rather keep him on turn at Double-A Binghamton, and El Duque, who may be as old as 43, is probably not durable enough to handle the bullpen workload.

Apparently, Brooks Robinson doesn’t think A-Rod’s been taking his name in vain. (Chuck Knoblauch, unavailable for comment)

Philadelphia’s Cole Hamels has struck out 12 through 5 innings tonight against Atlanta. That said, he still trails the Braves and sexual dynamo Tim Hudson (above), 2-1, thanks to back to back HR’s from Adam LaRoche and Todd Pratt in the 3rd inning.

While quipping that “Bud Selig is considering extending the trade deadline to allow Peter Gammons to recover,” Will Carroll drops the following science :

Lindsay Lohan … I get. It’s like finding a muddy dog, washing it off and finding that it’s a show quality purebred. With Lindsay, if you could just get the muck off and out, I’m convinced that young Ann-Margret is still there. There’s flashes now and again. Not that kind.

Funny, but I was about to write the exact same thing about Chris Cotter.