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Cantu Takes a Break

    That 21-game hitting streak by Jorge Cantu is starting to gather dust as the third baseman for the Marlins currently finds himself in a May malaise, not that he or anyone else ever expected him to threaten Joe DiMaggio. Cantu, who has gone 6 for 45 for the month, finds himself watching from the bench tonight when the Marlins take on the Mets in the second game of their four-game series.

    "Just a little bump in the road," Cantu said of his slump. "I wasn't going to hit like that (April) for six straight months."

    Cantu said he remains comfortable at the plate and hasn't seen the usual signs that would indicate it's "time to hit the panic button." Cantu said those indicators are an increase in his number of strikeouts and easy roll outs to the left side of the infield. The Marlins' cleanup hitter said three potential home runs have been batted down by the wind over the past week in D.C., Chicago and at home Thursday when his long fly ball leading off the ninth inning was caught not far from the wall by Mets left fielder Jason Bay.

   Manager Fredi Gonzalez said he felt that, with the Marlins midway through a stretch of 20 straight games, it was time to give Cantu a day, just as he did Thursday night with Dan Uggla. Wes Helms gets the start at third base tonight while Uggla will bat clean-up


  After playing in just four games for Triple A New Orleans, Doug Mientkiewicz tells the Marlins no thanks and opted for his release one day before his 10-day contract was due to expire. "Apparently Mientkiewicz, 35, saw the writing on the wall and decided to call it quits a day early," writes the New Orleans Times-Picayune.


    Marlins: 1. Chris Coghlan, lf; 2. Gaby Sanchez, 1b; 3. Hanley Ramirez, ss; 4. Dan Uggla, 2b; 5. Cody Ross, rf; 6. Wes Helms, 3b; 7. Ronny Paulino, c; 8. Cameron Maybin, cf; 9. Anibal Sanchez, rhp.

Mets: 1. Angel Pagan, cf; 2. Luis Castillo, 2b; 3. Jose Reyes, ss; 4. Jason Bay, lf; 5. David Wright, 3b; 6. Ike Davis, 1b; 7. Jeff Francouer, rf; 8. Rod Barajas, c; 9. Oliver Perez, p.