Surely, one of the joys of managing in New York must be having to defend every single lineup move. Before last night's game against the Phillies, Mets manager Terry Collins was asked why he wasn't starting Lucas Duda at first base, despite Duda's hot streak since the All-Star break and Collins' stated intention of keeping Duda in the lineup to improve his batting against lefthanded pitchers; and why he hasn't been giving Wilmer Flores more starts at shortstop.
Of Duda, who sat in favor of righthanded-hitting Eric Campbell, Collins said it is a matter of "pick your spots. Certain guys you're always going to have success against. Right now, isn't one of the guys.
"We've also somehow got to get Eric Campbell [hitting .328 after going 2-for-4 last night] some at-bats. He does have numbers against lefties, including Cole, so I just thought that was the switch today."
As for the question of more starts for Flores (.222 in 28 games) over Ruben Tejada (.226 in 90 games), Collins said, "The other kid [Tejada] is playing pretty good. I don't know what games you've been watching, but we've been playing pretty good lately."
Collins noted that Flores had been called up from Triple-A Las Vegas last week after Tejada was hit in the head by a pitch and "we were concerned about having a backup. So that's why [Flores] is here. There were no instructions to play him every day. We're going to try to get him at-bats. That's why he's in there [last night]."
Eveland 'a little tender'
Reliever Dana Eveland said his left elbow was "a little tender to the touch and bruised, but that's all" after he was hit by Ben Revere's line drive in the ninth inning Monday night. X-rays on Eveland's elbow were negative.
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