ANAHEIM, Calif. - Afterward, John Lannan said he would have gone 10 innings. Thankfully for the Mets, it didn't come to that.
Still, Lannan stepped up to spare his team's burned-out bullpen Saturday night, when the Mets needed 13 innings to beat the Angels, 7-6.
Lannan's conversion from starter to reliever has been bumpy. When he took over in the 12th inning of a tie game, his ERA was 36.00. But he tossed two scoreless innings, one night after he wasn't used in an 11-inning loss to the Angels.
"Everyone's been battling, the bullpen has thrown the ball extremely well, and I've just been sitting there," he said. "So tonight was just the first step and I look forward to building on it."
The Mets' bullpen already was without Jeurys Familia and Kyle Farnsworth, whose recent workloads made them off-limits to Terry Collins. By the 12th inning Saturday night, Lannan was the Mets' last available reliever.
"I'm just glad I could help out a little bit," he said. "These first couple of weeks have been a little bit of a struggle personally. But I've put those aside and kind of been concentrating on trying to figure this out so I can, cliche as it is, help this team win."
If he keeps this up, Bobby Abreu, 40, soon might find himself on the Mets' bench. He has been on a tear for Triple-A Las Vegas, hitting.526 with a .591 on-base percentage through the eight games. Abreu has an out clause in his contract at the end of the month . . . Ruben Tejada and Travis d'Arnaud were given routine days off Saturday. Both are expected in the lineup for Sunday's series finale against the Angels . . . Anthony Recker recorded his first career steal in the seventh. It came in his 81st career game. He stole 21 bases in the minors . . . Juan Lagares (2-for-6) extended his hitting streak to seven games.