Print and Go Back ESPN.com: New York Mets [Print without images]

Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Ike drops in order vs. southpaw

By Adam Rubin

ST. LOUIS -- After two games in the cleanup spot, Terry Collins adjusted Ike Davis' role. Davis slid to seventh on Tuesday night with the Mets facing left-hander John Gast.

Collins said Davis would move back to the No. 4 slot on Wednesday night. The manager explained that against a left-handed starter, he wanted more protection for No. 3 hitter David Wright. So John Buck will bat cleanup.

"Otherwise you pile up those left-handed hitters," Collins added. "... Tomorrow we'll put him back up there. I thought he swung the bat better yesterday. I don't want to put him in a situation where yesterday is forgotten -- where we're putting him in a tough spot, such as he was at home in the four-spot. We get a couple of guys on and he doesn't deliver."

Also Tuesday, Justin Turner is starting at shortstop for only the second time this season. Collins said that's just a single day off for Ruben Tejada, and not the beginning of a trend of Turner starting over him against southpaws.

Tejada is 0-for-his-last-9 and hitting .190 in May.

"He's one of the other guys that's really been struggling lately," Collins said. "And I want to get J.T. in there. We've got one guy hitting .350. We've got to try to find him some at-bats. Hopefully [Daniel] Murphy is breaking out. I wanted to play Ike. There's only one other spot to go for right now, and that was at shortstop."

By the way, Collins said he is "not that comfortable" with using Turner in the outfield, so do not look for him to start there anytime soon.

"In spring training we played Jordany [Valdepsin] in the outfield, we played Lucas [Duda] in the outfield and we played some other guys in the outfield," Collins said. "You can see that they're not outfielders. So to take a guy who has taken some fly balls off the coaches' bats and shagged a little bit in the outfield, I'm not really sure I'm that comfortable at this moment."