Mets report: Heredia tosses again

The Mets put together an intrasquad game in the morning to get work for several relief pitchers. Braden Looper and Mike DeJean each went two innings. Heath Bell, Bartolome Fortunato, Roberto Hernandez, Scott Stewart and Scott Strickland also pitched. <P> But all eyes were on Felix Heredia. The lefty set-up man has not pitched in a game since March 2 as he recovers from a circulation problem.

Heredia said he felt good and there was no numbness in his hand. But the results were discouraging. Heredia needed 32 pitches to get through his inning. Only 18 were strikes.

He walked the first two hitters he faced, minor leaguers David Bacani and Jay Caliguiri. Heredia then made an error on a ball hit back to him. Bobby Malek followed with a sacrifice fly and Jen Hansen with an RBI single.

"He's a work in progress for me," manager Willie Randolph said of Heredia. "It will take a while to get back in the rhythm."

In the actual game, the Mets beat the Cleveland Indians 7-5. Rookie Yusmeiro Petit went two solid innings to start. Matt Ginter followed with three scoreless innings.


  • RHP Pedro Martinez will pitch two innings of relief on Wednesday then start on short rest on Saturday. That will get him back on track to start on Opening Day. His last two starts had been rained out.

  • The Mets sent OF Angel Pagan, OF Ambiorix Concepcion, RHP Matt Lindstrom, C Mike Jacobs, LHP Blake McGinley and RHP Juan Padilla to their minor league camp.

  • RHP Steve Trachsel might have a more serious back injury than the Mets initially believed. The right-hander, who flew to New York for an MRI on Sunday, did not return to Florida as originally scheduled. He instead flew to Los Angeles and was examined on Tuesday by Dr. Robert Watkins, a specialist. Watkins is an orthopedic spinal surgeon who has worked with the PGA Tour and the NHL's Phoenix Coyotes. If Trachsel were out for any length of time, the Mets would need a fifth starter. Matt Ginter, Jae Weong Seo and Francisco Campos are the primary candidates.

  • C Jason Phillips hit .563 (9 of 16) with seven RBI in his first six exhibition games. With Ramon Castro 1 for 10 with one RBI, Phillips is the leading candidate to back up Mike Piazza this season.

  • OF Mike Cameron had Tuesday off after taking two consecutive days of live batting practice off minor league pitchers. He has recovered quickly from offseason surgery on his left wrist and could play in a game later this week.

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