Coming off a 1-0 Opening Day victory over Atlanta, the Mets will send R.A. Dickey to the mound on Saturday afternoon at Citi Field for his first start this season. The knuckleballer will be opposed by Jair Jurrjens. Dickey went 1-3 with a 3.82 ERA in April last season, and is 1-4 with a 4.01 ERA against the Braves.
Saturday’s news reports:
The Mets, who had Friday off, made it official and placed center fielder Andres Torres on the 15-day disabled list with a calf strain. They also promoted Kirk Nieuwenhuis from Triple-A Buffalo. Nieuwenhuis is expected to make his MLB debut sometime this weekend, maybe Saturday since Jurrjens is a right-hander. Ruben Tejada will lead off.
• Dickey spoke to reporters on Monday about multitude of topics, including his biography and getting off to a better start in 2012.
“A lot of people would come up to me and share similar stories,” said Dickey, who opened up about being sexually abused as a child. “I figured it would be a very cathartic experience for other people, but it certainly was nice. They certainly felt empathy for the book.”
Dickey got off to a bad start in 2011, losing five of his first six decisions. He pitched to a 5.08 ERA in his first nine games (eight starts), while allowing opposing batters to hit .311 off of him. But in his final 24 games (all starts), Dickey went 7-8 with a 2.69 ERA. He allowed opposing batters to hit just .236 off of him, and averaged nearly 6-2/3 innings per outing.
• Jason Bay has been a major disappointment since signing with the Mets. In two seasons, the so-called slugger has belted 18 home runs. But the Mets hope his production will increase since they’ve moved in the outfield walls. It was much of the same in the Opener, though, when Bay’s deep drive failed to make it over the fence.
Read more in the Daily News.
TRIVIA: Who is the winningest knuckleball pitcher of all-time?
Friday’s answer: Todd Hundley has a Mets’ record nine Opening Day RBIs.