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Mets takeaways from Friday’s 7-5 loss to Cardinals, including prospects receiving opportunities to shine

March 3, 2023; Port St. Lucie, Florida, USA; New York Mets shortstop Ronny Mauricio (60) hits a single against the Washington Nationals during the eighth inning at Clover Park. / Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

A number of Mets prospects had a number of opportunities to show what they had, but the pitching let down New York as they fell to the St. Louis Cardinals, 7-5, on Friday night.

Here are the takeaways…

– Eliezer Hernandez had a rough start against the Cardinals. He pitched 2.2 innings, giving up three hits, four earned runs and one walk without striking out anyone. In three games (one start) this spring, the right-hander has an ERA of 8.10 and a WHIP of 1.65.

The pitchers who relieved Hernandez weren’t much better. The combination of Daison Acosta and Connor Grey gave up three runs to give the Cardinals a commanding 7-2 lead.

Francisco Alvarez was behind the plate again. He popped out in his first at-bat. After Team Locastro singled in a run and got to second base on the throw, Alvarez went the opposite way to drive him home and tie the game at 2-2.

Kevin Parada, the Mets’ other catching prospect, replaced Alvarez and in his first at-bat drove in a run with a lineout in the seventh inning to cut the Cardinals’ lead to 7-4. It’s Parada’s first RBI of the spring. Parada’s night finished 0-for-1 with a walk.

Mark Vientos started at third base Friday and was hitless on the day, going 0-for-3 with a walk. Since his monster game last Saturday, where he hit two home runs, Vientos is 1-for-8 with just one walk in his last three games.

– Ronny Mauricio, who started at shortstop, struck out in his first at-bat. In his third at-bat, Mauricio lined a grounder down the third base-line and almost beat out the throw. If it was the regular season, it could have been challenged. The prospect finished the day going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts.

2022 first-round pick Jett Williams replaced Mauricio. In his first plate appearance this spring, he doubled in a run to get the score to 7-5 Cardinals.

– As the Mets look for an everyday DH option to start the season, Darin Ruf is projected to be an option. However, in his second spring start, Run went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts.

– Locastro is making a case to make the Mets’ Opening Day roster. He went 2-for-3 on Friday with an RBI. This spring, he’s 9-for-23 (.391) with six RBI and five stolen bases.


What’s next

The Mets take on the Nationals on Saturday at 7:05 pm

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