New York Mets: Luke Gregerson

Rapid Reaction: Mets 4, Padres 1

August, 16, 2013
SAN DIEGO -- The Mets are not in Dodger Stadium anymore. Thankfully.

Marlon Byrd cleared right fielder Chris Denorfia’s head with an eighth-inning shot for a tiebreaking two-run double against Luke Gregerson and the Mets beat the San Diego Padres, 4-1, in Thursday’s series opener at Petco Park.

Zack Wheeler set career highs with 12 strikeouts and 115 pitches and departed after six innings with the score tied at 1 in a no-decision.

The pitch count was his highest total ever in a pro game. The strikeout total matched the most ever. Wheeler also recorded 12 Ks as a San Francisco Giants farmhand on May 29, 2011, with Class A San Jose against Stockton.

The last time a Met recorded that many strikeouts in one of his first 11 career games? Dwight Gooden, who had 14 Ks in his ninth career game, back in 1984.

Wheeler got help from teammates.

Eric Young Jr. reached over the wall to swat a would-be homer from former Mets farmhand Rene Rivera back into the park. Rivera ended up with a one-out triple, but was stranded at third base in the third inning when Wheeler consecutively struck out opposing pitcher Tyson Ross and Will Venable.

In the fifth, center fielder Juan Lagares recorded his 10th outfield assist. Lagares threw out Ross trying to score from second base on a single to end the inning and preserve a 1-all tie.

The lone run surrendered by Wheeler came on a bases-loaded sacrifice fly by Jaff Decker in the fourth.

Wheeler’s line: 6 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 12 K.

Young and Lagares, incidentally, both are struggling at the plate. Lagares is hitless in his last 13 at-bats. Young is 3-for-26 on the road trip.

Lucky break: Good thing there is no instant replay yet for base calls. An apparent botched call by first-base ump Brian Knight allowed the Mets to take a 1-0 lead in the fourth.

With two outs and Daniel Murphy at second, Josh Satin hit a routine grounder to shortstop. Knight ruled Yonder Alonso pulled his foot off the bag, giving Satin an infield single. Murphy scored all the way from second base. Replays suggested Alonso had successfully kept his foot on the base while receiving the throw.

Taking the ninth: Gonzalez Germen earned his first major league save by recording the final six outs. He handled the closing role with LaTroy Hawkins (groin) unavailable.

John Buck had delivered a solo homer in the top of the ninth to give Germen a three-run cushion.

The last Met to have a two-inning save in a tight ballgame (not logging three-plus innings to finish a rout)? Aaron Heilman in 2008. Germen had four saves this season with Triple-A Las Vegas.

What’s next: Jonathon Niese (4-6, 4.45 ERA) makes his second start since returning from the disabled list. Niese opposes right-hander Ian Kennedy (4-8, 4.97) at 10:10 p.m. ET Friday.

Rapid Reaction: Padres 2, Mets 1

April, 4, 2013

WHAT IT MEANS: Dillon Gee limited the Padres to one run in 6 1/3 innings and Justin Turner contributed three hits, but the Mets were held in check by left-hander Eric Stults and five relievers. After the Mets posted 19 runs in the first two games, San Diego avoided the sweep with a 2-1 victory Thursday afternoon at Citi Field.

John Buck produced the lone run with a homer against Huston Street to open the bottom of the ninth.

GEE SHARP: Gee held the Padres hitless until Mark Kotsay dropped a one-out single over retreating Ruben Tejada and into shallow left field in the fourth. Kotsay eventually scored the game’s opening run on a double by rookie Jedd Gyorko.

Gee’s final line: 6.1 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 4 K. He also hit one batter. Gee threw 93 pitches (50 strikes).

Mets starters Jonathon Niese, Matt Harvey and Gee combined to limit San Diego to three earned runs in 20 innings in the series, good for a 1.35 ERA.

TURNER CLASSIC: Turner, in his first action this season in place of Daniel Murphy at second base, produced three of the Mets’ five hits.

Batting with two runners aboard and two outs in the seventh, however, Turner (3-for-4) hit a comebacker to reliever Luke Gregerson as the Mets’ opportunity to pull even at 1 stalled.

Earlier in the game, Turner twice was stranded in scoring position.

Ike Davis grounded into an inning-ending double play to leave Turner at second base in the third inning against Stults. Then, after Turner singled and advanced to second on a wild pitch with one out in the sixth, Marlon Byrd struck out against right-hander Brad Brach and Lucas Duda struck out looking against left-hander Joe Thatcher.

Duda was 0-for-3 with three strikeouts before being replaced on a double-switch in the top of the seventh. He was replaced in the latter innings of all three games in the series.

The Mets’ Nos. 3-6 hitters -- David Wright, Davis, Byrd and Duda -- combined to strike out 10 times. Make it 11 times, actually, if you count Murphy striking out in the eighth against Gregerson in the slot originally occupied by Duda.

The Mets went 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position, after going a combined 10-for-19 in those situations in the opening two games.

FAMILIA AFFAIR: Jeurys Familia -- a logical candidate to be demoted Sunday, when the Mets activate Aaron Laffey for the start originally intended for Shaun Marcum -- surrendered an eighth-inning run as San Diego grabbed a 2-0 lead. Familia issued a leadoff walk and surrendered a single before a wild pitch resulted in a run. Josh Edgin took over after Familia recorded one out.

BUCK SHOT: Buck now has two homers. Mets catchers produced five long balls all of last season.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Mets play host to the Miami Marlins, who enter Thursday night’s series finale in D.C. still without having scored a run this season. Jeremy Hefner makes his season debut Friday night against right-hander Alex Sanabia.

Series preview: Mets vs. Padres

March, 31, 2013

Associated Press
The Mets face (l to r) Edinson Volquez, Clayton Richard and Eric Stults during the season-opening series.
METS (74-88, fourth place/NL East) vs. SAN DIEGO PADRES (76-86, fourth place/NL West)

Monday: LHP Jonathon Niese (13-9, 3.40) vs. RHP Edinson Volquez (11-11, 4.14), 1:10 p.m. ET

Wednesday: RHP Matt Harvey (3-5, 2.73) vs. LHP Clayton Richard (14-14, 3.99), 7:10 p.m. ET

Thursday: RHP Dillon Gee (6-7, 4.10) vs. LHP Eric Stults (8-3, 2.92), 1:10 p.m. ET

Padres short hops

Chase Headley, who finished fifth in NL MVP balloting last season and won the NL’s Gold Glove at third base, will open the season on the DL with a fractured tip of his left thumb. Logan Forsythe, who was due to fill in, is dealing with plantar fasciitis. So Cody Ransom is the Opening Day starter.

Ransom, 37, signed a minor league contract with San Diego in December. He hit a combined .220 with 11 homers and 42 RBIs in 246 at-bats with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Milwaukee Brewers last season. In 2008, Ransom became the first player in Yankees history to homer in his first two plate appearances with the club.

Andy Hayt/San Diego Padres/Getty Images
Jedd Gyorko, who had 30 homers in the minors last season, makes his major league debut against the Mets.

• Volquez will make his third straight Opening Day start, which includes 2011 with the Cincinnati Reds. Volquez made three World Baseball Classic appearances for the victorious Dominican Republic, including notching the win against the Netherlands in the semifinals. He walked six in his final Cactus League start, but nonetheless limited the Cincinnati Reds to one run and two hits in five-plus innings.

• Rookie Jedd Gyorko, a second-round pick in 2010 from West Virginia University, will make his major league debut on Opening Day. He hit a combined .311 with 30 homers and 100 RBIs in 2012 between Double-A San Antonio and Triple-A Tucson. The righty-hitting Gyorko will move to third base in place of Ransom, and lefty-hitting Alexi Amarista should start at second base, Wednesday against Harvey. The diminutive Amarista has picked up the nickname "Little Ninja."

Carlos Quentin, who had two surgeries on his right knee last year, missed more than two weeks of spring training because of soreness but returned to Cactus League action Tuesday. He is poised to start in left field.

• After dropping a season-worst 22 games under .500 on June 29, the Padres produced a 48-36 record to close last season.

• First baseman Yonder Alonso set a Padres rookie record with 39 doubles last season, passing Benito Santiago’s former mark (33 in 1987).

• Shortstop Everth Cabrera became the first Padre to lead the NL in steals when he produced 44 in 2012. He was 59 for 63 in steal attempts between Triple-A and the majors. His 24 straight successful steals in the majors set a franchise record to start a season. Cabrera is the reigning Nicaraguan Pro Sports Athlete of the Year.

• The Mets reportedly turned down a swap of Daniel Murphy for right-handed reliever Luke Gregerson last year.

• Right fielder Chris Denorfia twice has represented Italy in the World Baseball Classic. He hit .381 in five games in this month’s tournament for Mike Piazza’s squad.

• Center fielder Cameron Maybin hit .198 in his first 71 games and .286 over his final 76 games last season.

• Richard logged 218 2/3 innings last season, which ranked fourth in the NL. He also allowed an NL-high 31 homers.

• Closer Huston Street converted 23 of 24 save chances last season (95.8 percent). The only better conversion percentages in franchise history: Rod Beck (100 percent, 2003) and Trevor Hoffman (98.1 percent, 1998). Street signed a two-year, $14 million extension last July that includes a $7 million team option for 2015.

• A waiver claim last May from the Chicago White Sox, Stults went 7-1 with a 2.79 ERA in his final 10 starts last season.

• San Diego’s projected Opening Day lineup:

Denorfia, rf
Cabrera, ss
Quentin, lf
Alonso, 1b
Gyorko, 2b
Nick Hundley, c
Ransom, 3b
Maybin, cf
Volquez, rhp

Rapid Reaction: Padres 3, Mets 1

August, 4, 2012

WHAT IT MEANS: Josh Thole was unable to hold a one-hop throw from Ronny Cedeño during a plate collision with Carlos Quentin and the tiebreaking run scored in the seventh inning. The Padres went on to hand R.A. Dickey a tough-luck 3-1 defeat Friday night at Petco Park. It was only the knuckleballer’s third loss in 17 decisions this season.

Dickey -- who held the Padres hitless until Yonder Alonso’s one-out single in the fifth -- surrendered a one-out single to Quentin in the seventh. Alonso followed with a double to right-center that narrowly eluded diving Scott Hairston.

Quentin attempted to score all the way from first base, and appeared poised to be out by several steps after Thole received the relay throw from Cedeño. But Quentin went in hard and dislodged the baseball from Thole. Alonso, who had taken third base on the throw to the plate, scored on John Baker’s ensuing line single to left field.

Thole had suffered a concussion -- likely his fourth as a professional ballplayer -- in Philly on May 7 in a plate collision with Ty Wigginton.

He was charged with an error for failing to hold the baseball Friday.

Dickey departed for pinch hitter Justin Turner with the Mets trailing by two runs the following half-inning. The knuckleballer’s line: 7 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 9 K.

Turner and Ruben Tejada had back-to-back singles to open the eighth, but Luke Gregerson struck out Andres Torres and David Wright. Closer Huston Street then entered and retired pinch hitter Jordany Valdespin on a groundout to second base.

WHAT’S NEXT: Ex-Padres farmhand Jeremy Hefner (1-4, 5.52 ERA), who was claimed off waivers by Pittsburgh and then by the Mets during the offseason, opposes right-hander Edinson Volquez (7-7, 3.51) at 8:35 p.m. ET Saturday.

Series preview: Mets at Padres

August, 3, 2012

US Presswire
The Mets face (l to r) Clayton Richard, Edinson Volquez and Jason Marquis this weekend.
METS (52-54, third place/NL East) vs. SAN DIEGO PADRES (44-63, fourth place/NL West)

Friday: RHP R.A. Dickey (14-2, 2.83) vs. LHP Clayton Richard (7-11, 4.14), 10:05 p.m. ET

Saturday: RHP Jeremy Hefner (1-4, 5.52) vs. RHP Edinson Volquez (7-7, 3.51), 8:35 p.m. ET

Sunday: LHP Matt Harvey (1-1, 1.59) vs. RHP Jason Marquis (4-6, 4.08), 4:05 p.m. ET

Padres short hops

• Left fielder Carlos Quentin and closer Huston Street signed extensions one week apart before the trading deadline. Street, San Diego’s All-Star representative, agreed to a two-year, $14 million extension, along with a $7 million team option for 2015. Quentin signed a three-year, $27 million deal that includes a no-trade clause.

Quentin made his season debut May 28, immediately after the Citi Field series against the Mets. He had missed the first 49 games after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. Quentin was acquired from the Chicago White Sox on Dec. 31.

David Zalubowski/Associated Press
Closer Huston Street signed a two-year contract extension.

Street was acquired from the Colorado Rockies in a Dec. 7 trade. He has made 17 straight scoreless appearances. Opposing batters are hitting .060 (3-for-47) with three walks and 21 strikeouts during that 16-inning stretch. Street is 17-for-17 in save conversions this season.

• Despite significant trade rumblings, third baseman Chase Headley went untraded as Tuesday’s deadline passed. Headley already has established a career high with 13 homers.

Jason Marquis signed with the Padres on May 29, after producing an 8.47 ERA in seven starts with the Minnesota Twins. Marquis and Kip Wells, who had been out of baseball for the past two seasons (aside from five starts in 2010 with the independent Long Island Ducks), are now in San Diego’s rotation. Tim Stauffer currently is on a rehab assignment. Joe Wieland underwent Tommy John surgery.

• Catcher Yasmani Grandal, who made his major league debut June 2, landed on the DL on Monday with a right oblique strain. Grandal, who arrived with Edinson Volquez in the December trade that sent Mat Latos to Cincinnati, had posted a .315 average, five homers and 15 RBIs in 77 at-bats during his brief major league tenure. John Baker has assumed the primary catching responsibilities. Backup Eddy Rodriguez homered in his first major league plate appearance, Thursday in Cincinnati.

• The Daily News reported the Mets turned down a trade of right-handed reliever Luke Gregerson for Daniel Murphy. Gregerson has tossed 11 2/3 straight scoreless innings.

• Shortstop Everth Cabrera is 18-for-18 in steal attempts. That is the franchise record to open a season, topping 12 successful steal attempts by Enzo Hernandez (to open the 1974 season), Rickey Henderson (1997) and Mike Cameron (2006). Cabrera also is 15-for-15 in the minors this season.

• Center fielder Cameron Maybin’s July 2 homer at Arizona was estimated at 485 feet, the longest in the majors this season.

• The Padres are the lone major league team lacking a no-hitter in franchise history.

Last series results

Mets won, 3-1, at Citi Field, May 24-27 (AP game recaps)

Padres 11, Mets 5: Jesus Guzman hit a two-run double in a four-run third to help the Padres rebound from being swept in a three-game series in St. Louis. Everth Cabrera had a career-high four hits and Eric Stults (1-0) pitched five innings to earn his first win with San Diego. David Wright hit a two-run homer off Matt Palmer in the sixth. Jeremy Hefner was making his first big league start -- against the team that drafted and signed him in 2007. Pitching in the rain from the start, Hefner gave up a hit in two innings and the Mets led 1-0 on an unearned run when the rain picked up and the tarp came out. After a 68-minute rain delay, Hefner promptly gave up a double to Cabrera to restart the game. After Stults grounded out, the Padres scored four times on four straight hits. More

Mets 6, Padres 1: Mike Baxter made the play of the game 12 pitches in. The left fielder turned a potential two-run double into an inning-ending double play with a leaping catch of Jesus Guzman’s drive against the wall. Dillon Gee relaxed after that and struck out a career-high nine. More

Mets 9, Padres 0: Johan Santana's four-hitter was his first shutout since returning from shoulder surgery in 2010. Mike Nickeas hit New York's first grand slam of the season, and Scott Hairston and Vinny Rottino also homered for the Mets. Ike Davis got a pinch-hit double in the eighth, giving him hits in four straight games and an RBI in three straight. More

Mets 2, Padres 0: R.A. Dickey struck out 10 to reach double digits for strikeouts in consecutive games for the first time in his career, and the Mets held the Padres scoreless for the second straight day. Tim Byrdak got two outs to finish the eighth and Frank Francisco pitched the ninth for his 13th save in 15 chances. Daniel Murphy had an RBI single and Mike Baxter scored on a passed ball as the Mets took advantage of a wild Edinson Volquez (2-5). More



Bartolo Colon
15 4.09 151 202
BAD. Murphy .289
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187