March 20, 2015

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) Michael Cuddyer hit his fourth home run of spring training, his second in two days, helping the New York Mets beat the St. Louis Cardinals 5-4 Friday.

Cuddyer had two hits, including a two-run drive off Sam Tuivailala in the sixth inning for his third home run this week.

''I feel good at the plate,'' Cuddyer said. ''Obviously it is just spring training, but any time you step on the field you want to do well and you want to compete. Fortunately, I've been able to get some pitches I've been able to handle, and I haven't missed them.''

Mets starter Bartolo Colon allowed two runs and six hits in 4 2-3 innings, struck out five and walked one. Cardinals starter Michael Wacha gave up three runs and six hits in 4 2-3 innings.

Curtis Granderson went 3 for 3 with a double and two RBIs. Granderson, who hit a career-low .227 last year, is batting .458 (11 for 24) in spring training.

Two of Granderson's hits Friday - and his solo home run Thursday - were to the opposite field, which has been a point of emphasis.

''We have to get out of the shift when he's up,'' Mets manager Terry Collins said. ''We've told him time and again, `Home runs are going to come,' but when he opens up that field, you're going to see a big difference.''

Scott Moore was 3 for 4 with a home run, a double and two RBIs.

STARTING TIME

Cardinals: Wacha had pitched 7 2-3 consecutive scoreless innings before the Mets scored two runs in the third. Wacha, who didn't have any walks or strikeouts, threw 65 pitches, 45 strikes.

''I felt really good,'' he said. ''I was real happy with the way the ball was coming out of the hand and the command on my pitches. I was able to throw it pretty much where I wanted to for most of the day.

Mets: Colon said he was pleased to get his pitch count up, throwing 48 of 72 pitches for strikes.

Colon's next scheduled start will be in a minor league game. Collins said he doesn't want Colon to face the Nationals again this spring training ahead of the opening series at Washington.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Cardinals: CF Jon Jay (wrist) was 1 for 3 with a single in his first exhibition game this year.

Mets: new York hopes reliever Vic Black (shoulder) will throw off a mound Saturday.

SHORT HOPS

Cardinals: manager Mike Matheny has been stressing the need for his players to take bigger leads off first and second base. he said if a runner got picked off, he would probably go over and say, ''Nice job.'' Cardinals leadoff hitter Matt Carpenter singled, then immediately drew two pickoff attempts from Colon.

Mets: RHP Noah Syndergaard, the Mets top prospect, was scratched from his scheduled start Saturday after being hit on the ankle by a ball Thursday. The Mets optioned Syndergaard to minor league camp after Friday's game. ... The Cardinals had the potential tying run on third when LF Kirk Nieuwenhuis threw out C.J. McElroy at home to end the game. McElroy tried to tag up and score on Xavier Scruggs' shallow fly ball.

UP NEXT

Cardinals: Ace Adam Wainwright is to make his Grapefruit League debut Saturday against Atlanta Braves. Eric Stults is scheduled to start for the Braves.

Mets: Steven Matz, New York's top left-handed pitching prospect, is slated to start against Detroit and David Price.

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