On the day after they blew a four-run lead against Miami, the Mets' recent run of great starting pitching resumed as Dillon Gee performed his unspectacular but extremely effective magic. Gee threw eight scoreless innings of three-hit ball on the way to a 4-0 victory over the Marlins Sunday afternoon at Citi Field.
Gee (2-1) struck out six and walked four and still was throwing strongly at the end of his 110-pitch stint. Carlos Torres came on to pitch the ninth in a non-save situation as the Mets once again moved three games over .500 at 14-11.
Gee was masterful from the beginning, allowing only one hit through the first six innings, a single to left by Marcell Ozuna leading off the fourth inning. Ozuna was forced at second after a great backhand stab by David Wright on a Giancarlo Stanton shot down the third-base line. Wright also made a nice play in foul territory that inning on a pop-up by Casey McGehee.
In the sixth, Gee walked two men but got out of it with a double play and by fielding a comebacker for the third out. By that time, he was cruising along with a 4-0 lead.
Stony Brook alum Tom Koehler (2-2) started for the Marlins and encountered problems when he walked Daniel Murphy to lead off the second inning. Koehler then hit Chris Young, and Lucas Duda followed with a ground-rule double the opposite way into the leftfield corner, scoring Murphy. By the time the second ended, Koehler already had thrown 47 pitches.
The Mets had two on with two outs in the fourth but got a bad break when Eric Young's sharp grounder up the middle hit the mound and hopped in the air, allowing shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria to field the ball and throw him out. But Koehler ran out of gas in the fifth.
Curtis Granderson opened the inning with a walk and scored on a double by Wright off the base of the wall in left. With one out, Chris Young worked a full count against Koehler before driving a slider deep into the lower deck in left for a two-run homer and a 4-0 lead. Koehler got out of the inning but was done after 109 pitches.
The only semblance of trouble Gee encountered was of his own making in the seventh. He induced leadoff hitter Jarrod Saltalamacchia to hit a high pop-up in front of the plate, but Gee apparently failed to communicate clearly with catcher Anthony Recker and Wright rushing in from third. The three of them watched the ball drop between the mound and the plate for what was ruled a single.
Garrett Jones followed with a single. Derek Dietrich laid down a bunt, but Recker was on it in a hurry and fired to third to get the lead runner. Hechavarria then grounded to Ruben Tejada at short, who started an inning-ending double play.