In-Game: Mike Pelfrey gives up a 2 HR to Cardinals

Today in St. Lucie against the Cardinals, Mike Pelfrey gave up a two-run home run to David Freese and a solo home run to Yadier Molina.

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3:06 pm: According to MetsBlog contributor Amit Badlani, Pelfrey said he felt better today than he did in his last outing, but the Cardinals were aggressive early in the count and so he had to shy away from using the sinker – once he began throwing his curveball and change-up, he got more comfortable.

Pelfrey thought his pitches were up early, but was able to settle down in the final two outings. He hopes to improve in his next start, saying:

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“I felt like I was a lot better from last week. I wasn’t very good last week, so, I don’t know how much that says. But I was better today, so after the next start I’ll try to get better again.”

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In regards to facing Carlos Beltran, Pelfrey said:

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“I was gonna wink at him or do something, but he never looked at me. It’s definitely different facing him after being with him for so long, but I’m just glad that I know that in his first AB, I kind of left the ball in the middle. I’m glad just that he popped it up.”

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To listen to Pelfrey’s entire talk with reporters, click the ‘play’ button below:

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2:10 pm: Pelfrey was pulled with one out in the fifth inning. In total, he pitched 4.1 innings, gave up three runs on six hits, while walking and striking out no one.

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Matthew Cerrone: Again, Pelfrey’s sinker looks flat today. The thing is, that would be OK from time to time, if he changed speeds more and used more breaking pitches. However, he isn’t doing that any more. And so, I just can’t figure out his strategy.

Last year he got away from the sinker, because it wasn’t working for him; and instead he threw more cut fastballs, left balls up in the zone and often got rocked. This spring he’s focused on his sinker again. He’s talking about it and throwing it often. But it’s flat, so, still, he’s giving up the long ball. It’s like he’s damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. It’s very frustrating and leaving me with zero expectations for his 2012 season.

He’s off to a rough start this March. Of course, it’s worth noting that Pelfrey had a TERRIBLE spring back in 2010, after which he started the regular season 10-2 with a 2.71 ERA.

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Michael Baron: Once again, Pelfrey struggled with the movement on his sinker today. His velocity was in the upper 80s for the most part and the sinker had way too much horizontal movement rather than downward movement. After his outing, Pelfrey told reporters the two home runs he allowed came off a cutter and four-seam fastball, but either way, there isn’t much movement on any of his pitches right now. Normally I wouldn’t be concerned at this stage of camp, but this has been a disturbing pattern and was his issue last season as well.