Mets 11, Padres 2: Three Up, Three Down

Going to try a new segment here for the 2013 season: Three up, Three down. We’ll take a look each day at three players who shined, and three who did not.

So without further ado, here are Three Up, Three down for the Mets’ Opening Day win over the Padres:

Three Up:
1. OF Collin Cowgill: Given plenty of rope as the center field starter, Cowgill doubled and scored in the fourth inning and hit his first career grand slam in the seventh. He said the day would have been better if he had not also struck out twice; we at Mets Cetera will not be nearly so critical.

2. LHP Jon Niese: 6 2/3 innings, two earned runs, four strikeouts, two walks. It was a solid-if-not-spectacular outing for Niese, who made it shine by going 2-for-2 with a walk, a run scored and an RBI at the plate.

3. SS Ruben Tejada: Tejada finished 2-for-4, doubling home a run in the second inning in what manager Terry Collins called the  most important at-bat of the game. That was even more critical considering it was Tejada, who hit .096 this spring.

Three Down:
1. 1B Ike Davis: Here we go again? Davis finished 0-for-5 with four strikeouts, the only person in the starting lineup (pitcher included) not to reach base at least twice.

2. PH Jordany Valdespin: The Mets put Valdespin in a dream situation, allowing him to bat with the bases loaded and one out in the seventh inning of a five-run game. He responded by beating the first pitch he saw into the ground for a rally-killing fielder’s choice.

3. OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis: To be fair, Nieuwenhuis does not really deserve to be on this list. But he struck out looking in his only at-bat, and no other Met did much of anything wrong in the blowout. So apologies to Kirk, but life’s not fair.

Three Up, Three Down Season Standings:
+1 OF Collin Cowgill
+1 LHP Jon Niese
+1 SS Ruben Tejada
-1 1B Ike Davis
-1 OF Jordany Valdespin
-1 OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

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