Mets fall to Padres in d'Arnaud's debut
Will Venable had four hits and San Diego got home runs from Nick Hundley and Jedd Gyorko in an 8-2 victory over the Mets on Saturday night.
Mets starter Jenrry Mejia left early with discomfort in his surgically repaired elbow, and the Padres took advantage when New York's relief corps was pressed into service. San Diego finished with 15 hits in snapping a three-game losing streak.
''The bats woke up a little bit,'' Black said.
Edinson Volquez (9-10) worked five innings for the win and Venable extended his career-high hitting streak to 14 games, the longest active run in the National League.
''I'm just trying to keep my rhythm and swing at strikes,'' he said.
Volquez earned his first career victory against the Mets despite reaching 100 pitches in five innings.
''I had a couple of long innings and my pitch count got high,'' he said. ''But the best part was the win after losing three. Everyone can go home happy.''
Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud, a highly touted prospect acquired in the R.A. Dickey trade last offseason, went 0 for 2 with two walks in his major league debut. The Padres stole three bases against d'Arnaud and he allowed a passed ball.
Mejia exited in the fourth after throwing two balls to Logan Forsythe. The right-hander, who had Tommy John surgery in 2011, walked off the mound and was met by manager Terry Collins.
Mejia has been pitching with a bone spur, and it had been determined that he would undergo offseason surgery.
''We knew that there was a time when it might come back,'' Collins said.
Mejia was replaced by David Aardsma, and moments later the Padres broke a 1-all tie.
Forsythe singled off Aardsma (2-2) and scored on Hundley's two-run homer to left field. It was Hundley's second hit in his first game back after spending two days on the paternity list.
''That's the best moment of my career by far,'' Hundley said of his career-high 10th homer. ''I couldn't stop smiling. I thought about my daughter and got a little emotional on the bench.''
The Padres stretched their lead to 4-1 when Alexi Amarista's sharp single scored Venable after he doubled down the right-field line.
The Mets cut it to 4-2 on Wilmer Flores' RBI double in the fifth. The Padres pushed it back to 5-2 on Jesus Guzman's RBI single in the bottom half.
Gyorko added a three-run homer in the eighth.
Venable singled in his first at-bat and stole second. Amarista moved Venable to third with a groundout and, when Yonder Alonso walked, the Padres had runners on the corners.
Mejia retired Gyorko, but Chris Denorfia followed with a run-scoring single.
San Diego's 1-0 lead was in jeopardy in the second, when the Mets loaded the bases with two outs on walks to d'Arnaud and Omar Quintanilla and a single by Juan Lagares.
Mejia hit a chopper near the plate, with Volquez and Hundley converging on it. Volquez fielded the ball near the first base line and threw across his body to nip Mejia at first.
But the Mets tied the game in the third on Daniel Murphy's RBI single, which scored Eric Young Jr. after he reached on a bunt and stole second.
Now, the Mets will see how Mejia's rebuilt elbow responds after he was forced from the game.
''It was a matter of pain threshold and it was exceeded apparently (Saturday night), and he had to come out,'' Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said. ''The doctor here took a look at him but at this point it's about his symptoms. Obviously severe and we will see where this takes us.''
NOTES: New York called up d'Arnaud from Triple-A Las Vegas after starting catcher John Buck went on the paternity list Friday. Both were obtained in the December deal that sent Dickey to the Toronto Blue Jays. ... D'Arnaud will catch All-Star RHP Matt Harvey on Sunday, a tandem the Mets hope is a foundation for the future. ''That certainly will be a challenge for him because Matt is a different animal than those other guys,'' Collins said. ''But as I talked to Travis this morning, I said, 'Listen, we've got a game plan. Stay with it. Trust it, and obviously have some input if something isn't working.''' ... Padres C Chris Robinson was optioned to Triple-A Tucson when Hundley was activated. ... Struggling 3B Chase Headley sat out. Headley was 2 for 8 in the series after hitting .160 (4 for 25) on the last road trip. ''He hasn't had many days off, so physically it's good, and mentally as well,'' Black said. ''The last five, six games he has been going at it pretty hard both ways.'' ... Padres LHP Eric Stults (8-10, 3.68 ERA) faces Harvey (9-4, 2.23) in Sunday's series finale.