Pregame notes: Valdespin, Ike, Marcum

Manager Terry Collins is giving Jordany Valdespin his first start of the season Friday, and placed him in the leadoff spot.

"He brings the same thing that Collin Cowgill does -- they make a bad pitch, it’s 1-0," Collins said. "He gets on base, he scores runs, he can steal bases -- if you have him in your lineup, that’s probably where he needs to be."

Valdespin will play center field, even though he doesn't have much experience at the position. Collins said Valdespin has been shagging fly balls every day during batting practice. "There’s no better way to learn how to read balls off the bat, to learn how to get jumps, and to actually go take it under live conditions," Collins said.

• First baseman Ike Davis has started this season 1-for-12, after getting off to a horrific start last year, batting under .200 until late June.

Collins said he talked to Davis on Thursday about his early struggles. "We were gonna take some extra BP today, we did it in the cage for quite a while, and Ike was the first guy there today," Collins said. "So one thing about it, he’s not satisfied with the way he’s started, and he’s trying to do something about it."

• Collins had no update on injured starter Shaun Marcum, but it doesn't sound like Marcum will be pitching for the Mets anytime soon.

Marcum received injections in his neck on Thursday, in an attempt to calm inflamed nerves in that area.

"All I know is (he) got the injections yesterday," Collins said. "As per the norm, when you get something like that, it’s 48 hours before you resume any type of throwing program. With the discomfort he was in last week, I’m sure he’ll start out slow. So it could be another week to two weeks before we know where he stands."