Nolasco shelled in Twins’ 9-1 loss to Mets
FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) Ricky Nolasco allowed seven straight batters to reach in a seven-run first inning for the New York Mets, who beat the Minnesota Twins 9-1 Friday.
The Twins’ opening-day starter threw 43 pitches in the inning but he was encouraged that he didn’t become fatigued. He was lifted after three innings.
”Obviously the first inning was pretty terrible,” Nolasco said. ”I think it would have been better if I would have told them what was coming.”
Five of the Mets’ six hits in the inning went for extra bases, including Ike Davis’ two-run double, Kirk Nieuwenhuis’ triple and a two-run homer by No. 8 hitter Taylor Teagarden. Davis went 3 for 3 with two doubles.
Mets: Right-hander Dillon Gee held the Twins to one run on five hits and no walks over 5 1-3 innings as he moved closer to an expected start on opening day.
”I don’t know what starter wouldn’t want to start opening day,” Gee said. `That would be a huge honor, but right now I’m worried about I got another start left and just make sure that I’m still polishing everything up and ready to go whenever they tell me to.”
Gee allowed all singles and maintained a walk-free spring that even had plate umpire Brian O’Nora complimenting the movement on his pitches.
”That was outstanding,” Mets manager Terry Collins said. ”Even the umpire (O’Nora) said every pitch he threw was going one way or the other. So it’s a great sign. He’s felt great. He’s looked great.”
Twins: Nolasco, signed this offseason to the richest free-agent deal in club history, entered his penultimate start of the spring with a 3.27 ERA but saw that spike to 7.07 after his rough outing.
Nolasco walked two and ran the count to three balls on five other batters but pronounced himself on track for the regular season.
Mets: Davis was in the lineup for a second straight day after missing 18 days with a leg injury. Davis served as the designated hitter. … Lucas Duda, Davis’ competition at first base, returned from his own 18-day absence due to a hamstring issue and homer and drove in two runs in three at-bats.
Twins: Shortstop Pedro Florimon, working back from a Feb. 17 appendectomy, was sent to the minor league side for extra at-bats after going 1 for 8 with two RBIs in his first three Grapefruit League games. Florimon has been impressive in the field and should open the year on the active roster, barring a setback. He went 0 for 3 with two strikeouts Friday for Class A Fort Myers.
Twins general manager Terry Ryan, who recently began a six-week course of radiation treatments after Feb. 11 neck surgery, is visiting camp for two days.
Ryan, 60, is feeling great and hopes to attend all Twins home games early this season, starting with the home opener on April 7 against Oakland.
No longer on a feeding tube, Ryan said he has regained about half the 14 pounds he lost following surgery.
WORLEY CLEARS WAIVERS
Right-hander Vance Worley, the Twins’ opening-day starter last season, cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Rochester.
Worley had a 13.50 ERA in 10 2-3 innings. The Rays roughed him up for 11 hits and seven runs Tuesday in just 2 2-3 innings.
The Twins acquired Worley and Triple-A pitching prospect Trevor May from Philadelphia in late 2012 for outfielder Ben Revere. Worley posted a 7.21 ERA in 10 starts last season with the Twins and was shipped to Rochester in mid-May.