Who knows the value of good starting pitching better than a reliever?

"Not too many teams have a good starting five," right-hander Brian Wilson said Wednesday night after the Los Angeles Dodgers' rotation depth was once again on display in a 4-3 win over the New York Mets at Citi Field. "They might have a one, a two, a decent third and hope for a fourth or a fifth."

The Dodgers, on the other hand, have a pair of back-end starters in right-hander Josh Beckett and left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu who could probably slot into the middle of 29 other rotations. Beckett and Ryu earned the wins in the first two games of the series against the Mets by combining to allow six runs while striking out 15 over 11 innings.

The bad news for the Mets -- and the Philadelphia Phillies, whom the Dodgers visit for a three-game series beginning Friday -- is that the best is still to come.

Right-hander Zack Greinke, who has allowed two runs or less in 21 straight starts, starts for the Dodgers against the Mets on Thursday before $215 million left-hander Clayton Kershaw, a two-time Cy Young Award winner, opposes the Phillies on Friday before veteran right-hander Dan Haren goes on Saturday.

Presuming everyone pitches as scheduled through Saturday, it'll mark the first time this season the Dodgers' projected starting five has pitched in the same rotation cycle. Kershaw missed six weeks with a back injury, Beckett began the season on the disabled list with a thumb injury and Ryu returned from the disabled list Wednesday after being sidelined three weeks by a stiff shoulder.

"You expect them to keep you in the game pretty much every day," manager Don Mattingly said. "I think when you get everybody kind of lined up, I think your club knows you've got a chance to win."

The Dodgers' projected starting five has combined to go 20-6 with a 2.93 ERA in 38 starts. Such efficiency benefits the Dodgers' relievers, who take solace in knowing the predictability of their workload. The Los Angeles bullpen has thrown seven innings of one-run ball in the first two games of the Mets series.

"When you have guys like we have that are going to be getting deep into the ballgames, it's going to be a lot easier on the 'pen," Wilson said. "And when you have that kind of formula, all of the starters can kind of feed off each other, kind of outduel one another.

"It's really nice to sit back and watch that type of baseball game -- just good, clean baseball."