- Adam Rubin, ESPNNewYork.com
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ATLANTA -- Along with the bright spots on Friday night, which included David Wright delivering a game-tying homer and Bobby Parnell stranding an inherited runner at third base in the ninth, there also were areas with room for improvement.
New York Mets
That includes with Shaun Marcum.
In his third appearance and second start since being activated from the disabled list, Marcum again failed to log five innings. He was charged with three runs on six hits and three walks in an 87-pitch no-decision. His ERA stands at 7.20.
His two Mets starts mark the first time since June 2011 that Marcum did not reach the sixth inning in consecutive starts.
Marcum said his changeup to lefties has been up in the strike zone in all three appearances. He said that particularly burned him on an RBI single by Juan Francisco in the third inning that pulled the Braves within 3-1.
Terry Collins said the slow start is excusable. Pitching coach Dan Warthen reminded Collins on Friday that Marcum's workload so far as a Met probably is akin to the final start of spring training. Marcum ramped back up quickly from neck and shoulder pain and only pitched in extended spring training games -- not higher-level minor league rehab starts -- before being activated.
"That's just what we're facing with him coming off the DL the way he did," Collins said. "People take spring training for granted. There's a reason why it's that long."
Marcum, though, downplayed that as a factor.
"Not really. I feel good," Marcum said. "I just have got to quit walking people. When I'm getting ahead, I've got to put the guys away. I will give Francisco credit. He did a good job of battling there. When he got that RBI single, he fouled some pitches off. And then I left one up and he hit it. But, for the most part, I just have to locate better, keep the ball down in the zone and quit walking guys."
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