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By Ed Coleman
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Dillon Gee started the game, but Matt Harvey stole the show once again. The young pitcher, whom Sandy Koufax was looking to meet at Mets camp the other day, retired all six Atlanta batters he faced on Friday. He got Chipper Jones to ground out weakly and struck out Jason Heyward with a 95 mph fastball.
Manager Terry Collins liked what he saw:
Harvey has composure that belies his years, but he admits that he was helped out by something veteran reliever Tim Byrdak said to him a couple of days ago:
As for the legendary Koufax wanting to meet him, the youngster was blown away:
It’s well understood that Harvey will not be on the Opening Day roster, but that hasn’t deterred his approach:
What happens is usually positive, and that’s no surprise to Collins:
The Braves are now 1-7 this spring after the Mets downed them, 5-3, on Friday. Gee went the first three innings, giving up two runs on five hits while striking out two and not walking a batter. Gee concentrated on his cutter, working it inside to lefties. Ronny Cedeno had a two-run single, Matt Den Dekker a two-run triple and Mike Baxter knocked in the other run. Lefty Josh Edgin pitched a perfect ninth for his second save of the spring. Edgin is getting a long look despite the fact that he has not pitched above Class A yet. Last year at two stops, he combined for 27 saves, striking out 76 while walking 23 over 66 innings.
Collins says he’s an interesting alternative:
Lucas Duda was scratched from the trip with a stiff back, but should be good to go on Saturday when the Mets travel to Viera, Fla., to face the Nationals. So should Andres Torres, who’s been out with a sore glute. R.A. Dickey will go against Chien-Ming Wang. Then, on Sunday, Johan Santana will attempt to go three innings against the Marlins in Port St. Lucie. He’ll be opposed by Miami newcomer Mark Buehrle. And it looks like Jose Reyes will now not make the trip to face his old team for the first time.
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