Dillon Gee could barely hide his disgust.
Before the Mets needed theatrics to rally for a 6-3 victory over the Reds on Saturday, Gee surrendered Brandon Phillips' go-ahead homer in the eighth inning, marring what otherwise had been a strong outing.
"It's tough to put into words how frustrating it is," said Gee, who did not factor in the decision. "You just want to break something at that point, really."
Just as he had done on Opening Day, Gee let a strong outing get away at the end. This time, with the Mets ahead 2-1 in the eighth, Gee served up a two-run shot to Phillips. He shook his head as the ball cleared the fence, capping a day in which he allowed three runs, six hits and a walk in 71/3 innings.
Until Ike Davis bashed a walk-off grand slam in the ninth, Gee was on the hook for a loss.
"He's going to get his wins," Davis said. "He's got a lot more starts. The way he's pitching, he's looking like he's going to have a good year."
Jonathon Niese will be allowed to throw 90 to 95 pitches against the Reds when he makes his season debut Sunday.
Niese had been on the disabled list with left elbow inflammation, but after his rehab went smoothly, the lefthander was activated Saturday. To make room, the Mets optioned infielder Wilmer Flores to Triple-A Las Vegas.
One day after a comebacker struck him on the right ankle, Jenrry Mejia did his typical jogging routine with no issues . . . The Mets struck out 10 times Saturday to give them 53 through the first five games, eclipsing the previous team record of 44 to start a season set in 1968 . . . With an infield single in the seventh, leadoff man Eric Young snapped an 0-for-15 stretch to begin the season.