In this afternoon’s game in Jupiter, the Mets opened the scoring in the top of the fourth. After Travis d’Arnaud singled with two down, Lucas Duda clubbed a two run homer to left center field to give the Mets a 2-0 lead. The Cardinals immediately tied things up in the fourth on an RBI double from Matt Adams and an RBI single by Oscar Taveras. After Zach Lutz cut off the relay throw after Taveras’ hit and threw the ball into center field, Taveras was gunned down at the plate by center fielder Jordany Valdespin to keep the score tied 2-2. On the play, Travis d’Arnaud was run into by Taveras, but held on to the ball for the out.
In the seventh, the Mets went ahead 3-2 when Travis d’Aranud (who led off the inning with a double) was driven in on a single by Andrew Brown. That was all the runs the Mets would need, as they held on for the 3-2 victory.
- Matt Harvey got the start for the Mets and was impressive once again. Aside from a mini barrage of hits in the fourth, Harvey was dominant. He tossed five and a third innings, allowing two runs on six hits. He struck out six and walked one. Depending on which radar gun you believe (stadium or scout), his fastball topped out at either 98 or 100 MPH.
- Jordany Valdespin was 0 for 4 at the plate.
- Ruben Tejada, who entered the game hitting .100, continued to struggle at the plate. He went 0 for 4 to drop his average to .088. He’s had only three hits all spring.
- Travis d’Arnaud, who has surprisingly yet to be sent to minor league camp, started behind the plate and went 2 for 3 with a single in the third and a double in the sixth. He’s hitting .345 this spring.
- Lucas Duda hit an opposite field two run homer in the fourth, and was 1 for 2 on the day. Despite what many are claiming, Duda has not had a bad spring by any means.
- Matt den Dekker got the start in right field and went 0 for 3 with a strikeout. He’s a near lock to open the season in AAA Las Vegas, where his main goal should be improving his contact rate.
- Josh Edgin replaced Harvey in the sixth, and got Matt Adams to line into an inning ending double play.
- Zach Lutz, whose potential inclusion on the roster hinges on the health of David Wright and Daniel Murphy, went 1 for 4. He’s hitting .308 this spring.
- LaTroy Hawkins worked around an infield single to toss a scoreless seventh. He struck out one.
- Scott Atchison pitched the eighth for the Mets and worked around a hit and a walk to hold the Cardinals scoreless.
- Bobby Parnell closed out the game in the ninth.
Ruben Tejada went 0 for 4 and saw his average drop to .088. He’s had three hits all spring. Spring stats are meaningless, but it’s a bit worrisome that Tejada has been this bad at the plate.
Travis d’Arnaud blocked the plate and got run into by Oscar Taveras, but held on for the out in the bottom of the fourth. The Mets have instructed d’Arnaud to not block the plate during spring training. I suppose he’s failing to adhere to those guidelines simply because his instincts are kicking in. In addition to his defensive prowess, d’Arnaud had two more hits today and is now hitting .345 this spring. The Mets have maintained since acquiring d’Arnaud that he’d start the year in AAA, and it’s strange that he’s remained in camp this long.
The Mets are off tomorrow. They return to action Wednesday when they visit the Astros at 6:05 PM.