Results tagged ‘ Ruben Tejada ’

Rockies 9, Mets 8: Three Up, Three Down

Fourteen hours after arriving at the ballpark, the Mets have themselves a victory.

Three Up:
1. OF Marlon Byrd: Kudos to Byrd, who now has 10 RBI in 39 at-bats. Compare that to all of last season, when Byrd drove in nine runs in 143 at-bats.

2. RHP Scott Atchison: He’s shown some grit this season, pitching in and out of a jam in the seventh inning with the tying and go-ahead runs on base. Discredit Atchison for loading the bases in the first place if you want; I’ll credit him for striking out perennial All-Star Troy Tulowitzki with the game on the line.

3. RHP Bobby Parnell: Sure, he blew a save and let Carlos Gonzalez steal a key base. He also faced four batters, generated a soft ground ball and struck out the side in a tie game in the ninth. It was a dominating performance from the Mets’ closer.

Three Down:
1. LHP Josh Edgin: With starter Aaron Laffey pitching only four innings, the Mets needed some length out of Edgin. Instead, the lefty specialist faced five batters and allowed four of them to reach base. All four later scored.

2. OF Mike Baxter: Coming on as an injury replacement for Lucas Duda, Baxter almost immediately misplayed Carlos Gonzalez’s fly ball into a rally-extending double. He also finished 0-for-1 at the plate.

3. SS Ruben Tejada: Tejada’s throwing error in the ninth inning resulted in a blown save for Parnell and a tie game in the eighth, after the Mets had led by as many as six runs. Tejada now has six errors in 13 games.

Three Up, Three Down Season Standings:
+6
C John Buck

+3
RHP Matt Harvey, 2B Daniel Murphy, OF Marlon Byrd
+1
LHP Jon Niese, INF Justin Turner, LHP Scott Rice, RHP LaTroy Hawkins, RHP Scott Atchison
-1
RHP Jeurys Familia, LHP Aaron Laffey, RHP Dillon Gee, OF Mike Baxter
-2
RHP Greg Burke, OF Lucas Duda, SS Ruben Tejada
-3
OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis, LHP Josh Edgin
-4
1B Ike Davis

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

Mets 4, Marlins 3: Three Up, Three Down

When Marlon Byrd stepped to the plate in the ninth inning Sunday, do you think he knew he was at risk of losing a point in this space for the first time this season? I do too.

Three Up:
1. OF Marlon Byrd: Can’t lie to you: Byrd was on the Three Down list before coming up with a game-winning two-run single in the ninth. Was his soft ground ball more a product of opportunity than anything else? Sure. But here at Three Up, Three Down, we reward walk-off hits 100 percent of the time.

2. RHP Greg Burke: The only reason the Mets stayed close all afternoon is because Burke wriggled out of Laffey’s jam in the fifth inning, giving the Mets 1 2/3 key innings of relief. For the first time this season, he aimed for strikeouts instead of ground balls, finding some success in the process.

3. SS Ruben Tejada: Not only did Tejada’s error streak end, but he also reached base twice and stole a critical base with one out in the seventh. Most importantly, he made an aggressive (and fortuitous) dash on the base paths, going first to third on Kirk Nieuwenhuis’ one-out single in the ninth. That was huge.

Three Down:
1. LHP Aaron Laffey: Ten hits in 4 1/3 innings ain’t going to cut it. Laffey’s rope in the rotation can’t be very long, which is bad news for the Mets; with Shaun Marcum out indefinitely, they don’t really have a good in-house alternative.

2. OF Lucas Duda: Two strikeouts and an 0-for-4 were bad enough, but Duda also took an, um, questionable route to Rob Brantly’s double in the seventh. That one did not come back to bite the Mets, but it reminded them that Duda is hardly a natural out there.

3. OF Collin Cowgill: Known primarily for his work against lefty pitching, Cowgill drew a tough assignment leading off against hard-throwing Marlins rookie Jose Fernandez, an electric right-hander. But, again, life ain’t fair.

Three Up, Three Down Season Standings:
+2
LHP Jon Niese, C John Buck
+1
RHP Matt Harvey, RHP Dillon Gee, INF Justin Turner, RHP Jeremy Hefner, 2B Daniel Murphy, OF Mike Baxter, OF Marlon Byrd
-1
RHP LaTroy Hawkins, RHP Jeurys Familia, 3B David Wright, 1B Ike Davis, LHP Josh Edgin, RHP Greg Burke, SS Ruben Tejada, OF Lucas Duda, LHP Aaron Laffey
-2
OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

Mets 7, Marlins 3: Three Up, Three Down

That was a wild one. Here’s your daily trios:

Three Up:
1. LHP Jon Niese: Ho hum, yet another strong starting pitching performance for the Mets. Niese gave up eight hits, but most of them were soft ground balls or bloopers. On most days, Niese would have pitched deeper into the game and recorded the win.

2. C John Buck: Four RBI for Buck brought his season total to nine, second in Major League Baseball. (You read that right.) Buck also called another strong game behind the plate against his former team; Mets pitchers really seem to love him.

3. OF Mike Baxter: With respect to David Wright, who rapped out three hits, and Daniel Murphy, who recorded the game-winner, it was Baxter who kept the offense chugging along all day. Two walks and a hit were nice, but Baxter’s stolen base in the seventh was what really made Murphy’s game-winner possible.

Three Down:
1. SS Ruben Tejada: Four errors now in five games for Tejada, in what is becoming a legitimate issue. With no other bona fide shortstop on the roster, the Mets cannot even give Tejada a day or two to clear his mind. (By the way, he was also 0-for-4 at the plate).

2. LHP Josh Edgin: According to Saturday’s official scorer, Edgin did not earn a victory because his outing was “brief and ineffective.” That’s enough to earn a thumbs down here.

OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis: I almost feel bad for Kirk…he’s been pretty unlucky in this space. His 0-for-4 Saturday did not affect the Mets to any great extent, but no one else really struggled. Sorry Kirk — once again, you lose by default.

Three Up, Three Down Season Standings:
+2
LHP Jon Niese, C John Buck
+1
OF Collin Cowgill
, RHP Matt Harvey, RHP Dillon Gee, INF Justin Turner, RHP Jeremy Hefner, 2B Daniel Murphy, OF Mike Baxter
-1
RHP LaTroy Hawkins, RHP Jeurys Familia, 3B David Wright, 1B Ike Davis, LHP Josh Edgin
-2
RHP Greg Burke, SS Ruben Tejada, OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

Marlins 7, Mets 5: Three Up, Three Down

That one got away from them quickly. Here are three reasons why, and three reasons why not:

Three Up:
1. RHP Jeremy Hefner: Once again, the Mets received a strong outing from their starting pitcher, leaning on Hefner for six innings of one-run ball. This loss was hardly Hef’s fault.

2. 2B Daniel Murphy: His three-run homer in the seventh proved that yes, as a matter of fact, the Mets did still have an offensive pulse. Murphy later grounded out with the tying runs on base, but we can’t hold that against him because he put the Mets in that position in the first place. Murphy saved another run with a nice defensive play in the ninth.

3. OF Jordany Valdespin: He was picked off first base once, nearly doubled off the bag twice, and took a horrific route to Giancarlo Stanton’s two-base hit in the ninth. But Valdespin did rap out two hits, steal a bag, reach base four times and draw an eight-pitch walk to set up Murphy’s homer. This is the least we can do for Valdespin, who was also plunked by the baseball twice (ouch).

Three Down:
1. SS Ruben Tejada: Tejada’s fielding error in the seventh inning opened the floodgates for the Marlins, who scored five runs in the inning. It was Tejada’s third error in four games. Somewhere, John Dewan shed a tear.

2. RHP Greg Burke: Of course, Tejada’s error would have been a footnote had Burke recovered to limit the damage. He didn’t, walking the next batter and allowing four runs (one earned) in 0.1 innings.

1B Ike Davis: Here we go again? Davis grounded into a double play (again), struck out (again) and finished 0-for-4 (again). He was robbed of a hit in the fifth inning, but stats are stats: he’s now 1-for-16 on the season.

Three Up, Three Down Season Standings:
+1
OF Collin Cowgill
, LHP Jon Niese, RHP Matt Harvey, RHP Dillon Gee, C John Buck, INF Justin Turner, RHP Jeremy Hefner, 2B Daniel Murphy
-1
OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis, RHP LaTroy Hawkins, RHP Jeurys Familia, 3B David Wright, SS Ruben Tejada, 1B Ike Davis
-2
RHP Greg Burke

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

Mets 8, Padres 4: Three Up, Three Down

Another game with lots of positives tonight for the Mets. But alas, in this space, only three players can be up and three must be down:

Three Up:
1. RHP Matt Harvey: He would be Three Up all by himself if it were not against the rules. But we’re a stickler for rules here, so Harvey goes +1 with a dominant seven-inning, one-hit, 10-strikeout performance.

2. OF Lucas Duda: Coming into the game, Duda had four home runs in 215 career at-bats against left-handers. He made that five in 215 with his two-run shot off Clayton Richard, adding a double and a walk later in the game.

3. 1B Ike Davis: The more impressive offensive stat line belonged to John Buck, but Davis sorely needed to snap his 0-for-the-season in Game 2. He did so with an absolute bomb, scraping the Shea Bridge with his two-run shot in the fifth.

Three Down:
1. SS Ruben Tejada: He struck out twice and hit two lazy flys in four hitless at-bats, then committed a throwing error in the ninth for good measure. Not good for a guy who spent his spring concentrating on hitting line drives and ground balls.

2. RHP Greg Burke: Burke relieved Harvey and gave up hits to the first two batters he saw — that’s twice as many as Harvey allowed all night, for those keeping track. To be fair, Burke did recover after that, generating consecutive ground balls to limit the damage to one run.

3. RHP LaTroy Hawkins: Same deal. Two straight hits to start the ninth, but recovered until Tejada’s error led to two more unearned runs. Say this about Burke and Hawkins: at least they didn’t walk anyone.

Three Up, Three Down Season Standings:
+1 OF Collin Cowgill
+1 LHP Jon Niese
+1 RHP Matt Harvey
+1 OF Lucas Duda
-1 OF Jordany Valdespin
-1 OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis
-1 RHP Greg Burke
-1 RHP LaTroy Hawkins

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

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.

Roster battles begin to take shape at Mets camp

Some new minutiae from manager Terry Collins’ State of the Mets press conference this afternoon:

IMG_2065

  • Lucas Duda is the starting left fielder. He won’t have to compete for the job.
  • Collins would like to carry multiple left-handers in his bullpen. Josh Edgin is close to a lock, with Pedro Feliciano, Robert Carson and Aaron Laffey all possibilities behind him.
  • Mike Baxter could lead off against right-handed pitchers. Collin Cowgill could lead off against lefties. Or Ruben Tejada could lead off against everyone. It’s all still up in the air, though it doesn’t appear that Daniel Murphy is a leadoff consideration at this point.
  • Matt Harvey will not be on any sort of innings limit. Collins expects him to approach or exceed 200 innings this season.

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Ruben hoping to be more like Jose

Ruben Tejada stopped by Flushing today in good shape and good spirits, eager to get going for the season. He took batting practice at Citi Field and plans to report to Spring Training on Saturday, eight days early, which should please Terry Collins just fine.

tejadajoggingSpending the past week and a half working out on Long Island with a group of local big leaguers and prospects, Tejada spent time with Jose Reyes, who helped his former teammate tweak his baserunning technique. Though Tejada said he is willing to bat anywhere in the lineup this season, he hopes to lead off — and believes stealing more bases may be the ticket to doing so.

“We talked about everything,” Tejada said. “In practice, I tried to learn a lot about running the bases, stealing more bases.”

Leadoff or not, Tejada has no competition this spring for the starting shortstop job. The Mets hope only that he proves strong and well-conditioned enough to give them upwards of 150 games at the position.

Tejada hit .289 with a .333 on-base percentage in 114 games last season, missing significant time early in the year with a right quad strain. Still just 23, he has two career homers and 11 stolen bases in 1,132 plate appearances.

Unlike Reyes, Tejada does not possess elite foot speed. But scouts do laud his baseball instincts, which can be every bit as important as speed when it comes to stealing bases.

Follow me on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo.

Mets hit Papelbon again (and again and again)

The Mets’ furious rally against Jonathan Papelbon in the ninth inning Thursday was just the latest in a string of successes versus Papelbon dating back to 2009, when he was closing out games for the Red Sox. Remember these?

The date: May 23, 2009
The hero: Omir Santos
The situation: Coming off a disastrous trip to Los Angeles and battling injuries to key players including Carlos Delgado, Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, Ryan Church and Francisco Rodriguez, the Mets found themselves trailing the Red Sox by a run in the ninth. But with a man on base, Santos hit a line drive off Papelbon that clanged off Fenway Park’s Green Monster for an apparent double. Umpires reviewed the play and minutes later, called it a homer. J.J. Putz mowed down the Sox in the bottom of the ninth to close out the victory.
The quote: “A lot of things were going through my mind. I knew I hit it well. If it was going to be the big hit of the game? I couldn’t even express how I was feeling at second base, waiting for the call.” –Santos

The date: May 7, 2012
The hero: Jordany Valdespin
The situation: Valdespin began his Mets career 0-for-6, looking overly aggressive and lost at the plate. But with two men on base in a tie game in the ninth, Valdespin walloped a Papelbon fastball into right-center field for a game-winning homer. After Frank Francisco closed out the Phillies in the ninth, Valdespin’s teammates soaked him with beer in a postgame celebration.
The quote: “He is an extremely talented young player. He’s just so athletic. I know that he’ll handle himself great. If he plays the way he’s been playing since he’s been here, and the way he’s handled himself, he’s got a chance to be here for a while.” –Mets manager Terry Collins

The date: July 5, 2012
The hero: David Wright
The situation: It may not actually be fair to call Wright the hero in this one. Ike Davis set up the winning rally by doubling off Papelbon to lead off the ninth, with the Mets trailing by a run. Then, with two outs, Valdespin, Ruben Tejada and Daniel Murphy all submitted tremendous at-bats, fouling off pitches and taking others for balls. After Papelbon plunked Valdespin and walked Tejada, Murphy hit a game-tying single off Papelbon’s glove. Wright then ended things with a bloop single to right.
The quote: “I had the worst at-bat out of everybody in that inning. More lucky than anything, but I was glad to get the opportunity because the guys in front of me had some incredible at-bats.” –Wright

In case you were wondering, Papelbon has now faced the Mets eight times in his career. The numbers: 0-3, 1 save, 2 blown saves, 7.0 IP, 8 H, 7 ER, 4 BB, 8 K, 9.00 ERA.

Follow me on Twitter: @AnthonyDiComo

Yee haw! Mets go Western after win

The Mets had a little fun after Sunday’s 6-5 victory over the Rockies, dressing up in Western and Mexican garb for their plane ride to Houston. Here are the pictures, all courtesy of the Mets:

Follow me on Twitter: @AnthonyDiComo.

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