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Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Mets morning briefing 8.31.11

By Adam Rubin

Mike Pelfrey took a scoreless effort into the seventh inning when the outing unraveled, keeping him winless in his past 16 starts against the Marlins. The Mets lost to Florida, 6-0, as a four-game winning streak ended.

Wednesday's news reports:

Terry Collins said Justin Turner and Ruben Tejada will split time at second base about 50-50 with Jose Reyes back and manning shortstop, although the manager called his decision on any given day a "feel" thing. Read more in the Star-Ledger.

• Collins compared Tejada to Florida's Omar Infante and suggested that if Reyes departs as a free agent, Tejada has the mental makeup to take over at shortstop for the Mets. "His mental makeup is so far beyond his years," Collins said. Read more in Newsday and the Record.

• Pelfrey regretted a snafu with Turner in Florida's five-run seventh. Turner wanted a pickoff throw to second base, showing open glove as he broke for the bag. Pelfrey instead delivered to the plate. Javier Vazquez bunted. And Turner, stuck by second base, could not get to first base in time to be in position for a throw from David Wright that would have retired Vazquez. That loaded the bases with the game scoreless. Read game reports in the Star-Ledger, Times, Daily News, Post and Newsday.

Eli Shalomoff, who was struck by a foul ball off the bat of Greg Dobbs during Game 1 of Monday's doubleheader, was released Tuesday night, Elmhurst Hospital assistant director of public affairs Atiya Butler told Newsday. The 12-year-old received a visit from Dobbs earlier in the day. According to the Palm Beach Post, relaying info from Dobbs, the boy was diagnosed with a concussion, broken nose and sinus bone and needed eight stitches. Dobbs told the South Florida newspaper the boy is primarily a soccer fan. "He wants to try out for hockey," Dobbs said. "But he’s not that big of a Mets fan. He’s more of a Yankees fan."

• The first-year Rockland Boulders of the indepedent Can-Am League announced Howard Johnson and son Glen would play with the team Sept. 4 and 5. "The most exciting thing is I get a chance to do something most dads never get a chance to do," HoJo told the Daily News, referring to playing alongside his son. "But I really just hope that I make contact." The 50-year-old Johnson plans to play first base, even though he needs knee-replacement surgery. Read the full details at the team's web site.

Nick Evans' modest five-game hitting streak since taking over at first base with Lucas Duda moving to right field came to an end Tuesday, but Evans appreciates the playing time. "I’m getting the chance to get some at-bats in a row, and the more you get in a row, the more comfortable you’re going to feel,” Evans told Andrew Keh in the Times.

• Rosters expand Thursday (Sept. 1), but Dan Martin in the Post writes not to expect an influx. Collins said most of the players who would have been summoned -- the likes of Lucas Duda, Jason Pridie and Nick Evans -- already were needed earlier and called up. "If we were breaking the whole thing up next year, it would be a different story," the manager added, alluding to how Turner and Tejada need to play second base. "Then, you just throw the call-ups out there, but that's not the case. And players like Willie Harris and Scott Hairston, who do thankless jobs and do them well, deserve to play." Still, it speaks volumes that 40-year-old Miguel Batista gets Thursday's start.

BIRTHDAYS: Hideo Nomo turns 43. ... Outfielder Claudell Washington, who played for the 1980 Mets, was born on this date in 1954.