Flore-leaf clover! Wilmer's 6 RBIs lead Mets' rout
By Anthony DiComo and Jenifer Langosch
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Wilmer Flores' grand slam highlighted a 10-run assault on Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright, who could not escape the second inning Friday in a 16-2 Mets win over St. Louis.
Flores' blast landed well over the left-field fence, carrying toward a practice diamond several dozen yards beyond First Data Field. It came after Wainwright walked four batters in the second inning, also allowing an Asdrubal Cabrera single and a Jay Bruce sacrifice fly.
The first inning was not much kinder to Wainwright, who gave up RBIs to Yoenis Cespedes, Neil Walker and Travis d'Arnaud. In total, Wainwright allowed seven hits and four walks, the 10 runs ballooning his Grapefruit League ERA from 3.00 to 10.97. Every Mets starting position player recorded a hit and either scored or knocked in multiple runs.
"I won't discard this at all," Wainwright said of his shortest spring outing. "I'll use it. I'll watch that game pretty intensely the next couple days before my side [session], and then I'll get on the mound and get some good work. I'm not discouraged, though, because where I've been throwing the ball and the way I've been throwing the ball, it's not very much different. I just have to make some minor adjustments."
Mets starter Steven Matz enjoyed a far less eventful afternoon, giving up one run -- an Eric Fryer RBI single -- in 3 2/3 innings. Matz also struck out three batters and picked a runner off first base, using a pickoff move that he has worked to revamp this spring.
"It felt really good," Matz said of his pickoff move. "I think it's just repetition. The more you feel comfortable with it then the more confident you are."
Cardinals Up Next: The Cardinals and Mets will meet again on Saturday, this time at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla. Right-hander Michael Wacha will make his fifth start of the spring for St. Louis. He's allowed three runs (two earned) over 13 innings and is coming off a five-inning performance on Monday. The game will air on MLB.TV and Gameday Audio.
Mets Up Next: While Noah Syndergaard stays back in Port St. Lucie to pitch in a Minor League game, Robert Gsellman will start the Mets' 1:05 p.m. ET Grapefruit League contest against the Cardinals. Left-handed relievers Tom Gorzelanny and Josh Edgin, both of whom need a strong late push to make the Mets' Opening Day bullpen, are also scheduled to appear. The game will air on MLB.TV and Gameday Audio.