Mets Fry Marlins 5-4. Jerry Manuel Is All Smiles Heading Into Season

Joe NoaCorrespondent IMarch 29, 2009

PORT SAINT LUCIE, FL - FEBRUARY 23:  Francisco Rodriguez #75 of the New York Mets poses during photo day at Tradition Field on February 23, 2009 in Port Saint Lucie, Florida.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

The Mets defeated the Marlins by a score of 5-4 before an almost sellout crowd at Tradition Field in Port St Lucie.

Dillon Gee pitched only three innings but they may have been the most important innings of his young career.

Who is Dillon Gee? Just a young pitcher that was playing for the Brooklyn Cyclones last year. He has impressed Jerry Manuel so much that Jerry wanted to take a good look at him. This is a move on Manuel's part keep him in mind when the dog days of summer come and he needs a call-up pitcher to fill in.

Gee only hit the radar at 89 mph but he showed good command and up until the third inning, was consistently throwing strikes.

To offset his not-so-fast fastball, Gee showed he has a better than average changeup. His lone mistake was a solo shot by Dan Uggla.

Keep this young man in the back of your mind. He looks like a sleeper than may blossom in 2010.

Francisco Rodriguez came in the eighth inning. After giving up an infield hit to start the inning, K-Rod shut down the rest of the Marlins to end the inning.

Manuel gave K-Rod some pitching time for two games in a row to get his work in. He was consistently hitting the radar at 93 mph. Add his curveball and change up and K-Rod is going to be extremely difficult to hit.

Daniel Murphy continues to swing a hot bat hitting a double to deep left center. His defense was better as the winds were not as strong as the night before.

The Mets are at .500 with a 13-13-1 record. This means absolutely nothing. Atleast what you want is for the Mets to start having a winning attitude as spring training comes to a close next Friday. Look for the Mets to start playing the regular lineup.

Castillo was given a well deserved day off. He has come back from his poor year last season in better shape and with a better attitude. He has a lot to prove to the Met faithful. He is determined to prove to Omar Minaya and Fred Wilpon that he was not a signing mistake.

Right now, the Mets look solid all around. Their bullpen has gotten a facelift with the addition of J.J. Putz and Francisco Rodriguez. The other additions of Parnell, Stokes,O'Day, and Green, will give the Mets a younger and hard-throwing bullpen.

Everyone seems healthy and eager to get the season started. Let's play ball!