March 14, 2013; Port St Lucie, FL, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Dillon Gee (35) throws a pitch against the Detroit Tigers in the spring training game at Tradition Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports

3/20 Game Recap: Mets top Astros, 7-5

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Right before the Mets took the field to play the Houston Astros tonight, news broke that Shaun Marcum received a cortisone shot for an impingment in his right shoulder. Sandy Alderson stated the shot was “precautionary,” and the right-hander will try to throw again in a couple days. With that being said, it would have been nice to see Dillon Gee bounce back after having a rough start his last time out. That didn’t happen, as he was roughed up again, ballooning his spring ERA to 8.31.

Despite falling to a 5-0 deficit after the first two innings, New York scored seven unanswered runs to take the victory. Coming out on top at the end happened thanks to some clutch RBI hits from Matt den Dekker and Collin Cowgill, and scoreless relief appearances from Aaron Laffey, Greg Burke, and company.

Highlights:

  • Although the first two innings were tough, Dillon Gee ended up bouncing back and throwing two scoreless frames, which allowed the hitters to start making a comeback. The right-hander threw 4 innings and gave up 5 runs on 7 hits, 1 walk, and 5 strikeouts.
  • Aaron Laffey, Pedro Feliciano, Greg Burke, Josh Edgin, and Jeurys Familia all came through in relief and put donuts on the board for the remainder of the ballgame. Outside of Feliciano (0.1 IP), each reliever threw at least one inning. They combined for 6 strikeouts, no walks, and 4 hits.
  • Ruben Tejada broke an 0-for-18 skid with a double, which was followed by a two-run homer by Cowgill.
  • den Dekker and Brian Bixler both tripled runs home.
  • Jordany Valdespin collected two more hits, and is now hitting .348 on the spring.
  • Zach Lutz singled home a run in his only at-bat of the night, and is now hitting .325.
  • John Buck saw his first game action since being sidelined with the flu, and went 1-for-2.

Thoughts:

It would have been nice to see Gee bounce back with a solid start, especially with the news about Marcum, but at least his entire appearance wasn’t awful. Depending on whether or not this shoudler impingement is going to be a big deal, Dillon will be expected to carry more of the load in the rotation. Adam Rubin mentioned Laffey’s name as a possible replacement, and he’s been effective in nine shutout innings this spring.

Jordany Valdespin just continues to hit and produce at the top of the lineup. Terry Collins had some glowing things to say about ‘Spin and his performance in camp; he thinks so highly of what he’s done over the past month that he’s the favorite to not only be on the roster in a couple weeks, but also being the leadoff man. Those are bold statements, but with the way he’s played, it’s hard to not insert him in the starting lineup, especially since he’s only struck out twice all spring.

I hope to God Tejada’s double tonight breaks him out of his spring-long funk, but we’ll see the rest of this week if Ruben will finally perfrom the way we need him to perform this season.

Next Up:

The Mets travel back home to Port St. Lucie and welcome the St. Louis Cardinals to Tradition Field for a 1:10pm game. For those by a TV, the game will be televised on SNY.

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Tags: Collin Cowgill Dillon Gee New York Mets

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