Terry Collins made a pretty convincing case before Sunday's game for having Daniel Murphy in the No. 5 spot. After the Mets' 3-1 win over the Diamondbacks, the manager didn't need to explain himself any further.
Murphy, who was coming off Saturday's four-hit performance, delivered a two-run single that provided most of the Mets' offense. In the first inning, Andres Torres continued to be a catalyst with his leadoff walk, then alertly raced to third on a good read of David Wright's one-out bloop single to shallow center.
Wright made it to second on the throw, and Murphy followed with the two-out single. Asked if he was fond of the No. 5 spot, Murphy said, "I like winning."
Fair enough. Murphy, who entered Sunday with a .380 slugging percentage, does not seem like the prototypical No. 5 hitter. But with Ike Davis off to an atrocious start, Collins has been forced to find other options for run production.
"I actually believe in the middle of the order is where he belongs, in that fifth spot," Collins said before the game. "I really do. I've hit him second because I think he gets on base. Right now, we're looking for someone that can swing the bat to drive some runs in.
"When Ike starts swinging the way we know he can, Murph will probably move back up to No. 2. But right now, I just think we got to kind of spread out our guys that are swinging the bats."
Chris Young, a year removed from shoulder surgery, is scheduled to make his first rehab start Thursday for Class A St. Lucie. Collins said the goal is about 75 to 80 pitches and Young could be "penciled in for the end of May" if he continues to build up arm strength . . . Jason Bay, on the DL since April 24 with a fractured rib, is not close to returning. "Not for a while," Collins said . . . D.J. Carrasco rejoined the Mets but did not pitch. Collins said he has no specified role, other than somewhere between the fifth and eighth innings.