09/16/12 1:52 PM ET
McHugh, Hefner candidates to start Wednesday
By Jordan Schelling / Special to MLB.com
Collins said Sunday morning that he was still unsure of his starter for that game, but that McHugh and Hefner were the most likely options.
"We've got some dates coming up, and we need some starting pitching," Collins said. "There's three that I can [think of]."
Hefner and McHugh each pitched in the Mets' 9-6 loss Saturday night, with Hefner being first out of the bullpen in relief of Jenrry Mejia. McHugh faced four batters in the fifth, and he combined with Hefner to pitch 1 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on three hits.
After letting a run score on a wild pitch and giving up a two-run homer to Rickie Weeks in the fourth, Hefner settled in and retired the next three batters. McHugh got a pair of flyouts sandwiched around a pinch-hit RBI triple and an RBI single.
"I don't know when it is," Collins said of McHugh's start, "but he's going to start later on. He's not on any definite rotation. The days off have kind of scrambled up the rotation."
Familia's relief work opening Mets' eyes
MILWAUKEE -- Jeurys Familia was expected to get a start at some point this month, but Mets manager Terry Collins said before Sunday's game that he is not so sure about it anymore.
"We kind of like what we're seeing," Collins said of Familia's performance out of the bullpen.
Familia was impressive late in Saturday's loss, retiring the middle of the Brewers' lineup in order, including a strikeout of Aramis Ramirez. His eighth inning was the only 1-2-3 frame on the night for the Mets.
In four appearances out of the bullpen, Familia has given up two runs on five hits with five strikeouts and zero walks over five innings of work. Familia features a power swing-and-miss sinker, and he has shown the ability to throw a pretty good slider as well.
As impressive as he has been, though, the Mets remain cautious of using him on consecutive nights.
"We're pretty careful, because he's never done it," Collins said. "The one thing we don't want to do is get this guy hurt. But, boy, we're sure impressed with what we're seeing right now."
First career RBI a highlight in Mejia's start
MILWAUKEE -- Not everything about Jenrry Mejia's first Major League start since 2010 was bad. In fact, some parts were fairly impressive.
That's just the kind of perspective Kelly Shoppach hopes Mejia will have on it.
The highlight for the 22-year-old right-hander, who allowed five runs on six hits and five walks over three-plus innings in a 9-6 Mets loss, was a perfectly executed suicide squeeze bunt -- his second sacrifice of the game -- in the top of the fourth. It was the first of three straight scoring plays, and Mejia's first career RBI gave the Mets a 2-1 lead at the time.
"I would love for guys to take it that way," Shoppach said. "Take it as 'Hey, I just knocked in a run right there' and cherish that moment. Because he won't ever knock in his first run again."
Mejia gave a big smile when asked about the bunt Saturday night.
"I feel very good [about it]," he said. "Just go out there and lightly bump it."
Shoppach acknowledged that it can be hard to look back and find positives in an outing like Mejia had Saturday. But he also was confident that Mejia would be more relaxed next time and that should lead to better results.
"We've all been there," Shoppach said. "It's OK, he's got good stuff. He's just got to calm down and get in the zone more."
Dickey's bid for 20 may go down to the wire
MILWAUKEE -- With 16 games remaining after Sunday's series finale, R.A. Dickey will likely make three more starts this season. The first of those will come Monday night against the Phillies.
Two more wins will get Dickey to 20, which could go a long way in the minds of Cy Young Award voters. With 18 wins, Dickey currently ranks second in the National League behind Gio Gonzalez.
But what if Dickey does not get to 20? Could he still be the NL Cy Young Award winner?
"I don't know. I think it'd probably be hard," said Mets manager Terry Collins. "But he's got enough left that hopefully we can give him some run support to get him to 20 for sure."
Dickey leads the NL with a 2.68 ERA, five complete games and three shutouts. He also is tied for second in the league and sixth in the Majors with 197 strikeouts.
Whether he is recognized for his performance with postseason awards, Dickey's season is the best Collins has seen by a starting pitcher on any of the teams he's managed.
"Chuck Finley had a real good year, and Shane Reynolds one year in Houston had a real good year, he won 17 or something," Collins said. "But the best I've had is R.A."
Jordan Schelling is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.