NEW YORK (AP) — Tyler Lyons stepped into the St. Louis rotation and looked right at home. Too bad for him, the Cardinals couldn’t get anyone home to help him.
Jenrry Mejia pitched four-hit ball into the seventh inning, David Wright delivered another key hit and the New York Mets blanked St. Louis 2-0 Monday night.
Lyons (0-1) lost in his first major league game of the season. Promoted from Triple-A Memphis earlier in the day to take the rotation spot of injured Joe Kelly, he allowed two runs and six hits in six innings.
“There were good things, there were things definitely to build on,” Lyons said. “Just got to eliminate some of those other miscues.”
A 26-year-old lefty with a big-breaking slider, Lyons struck out seven. He’s another in the long line of tall, homegrown pitchers developed by the Cardinals, and went 2-4 last year in his first big league season.
Lyons struck out the first two batters in the third before Eric Young Jr. singled for the Mets’ first hit. Slumping Curtis Granderson was hit by a pitch and Wright singled for a 1-0 lead.
Lyons’ throwing error on a tapper set up another run in the sixth. Daniel Murphy walked, later stole third and scored on a single by Travis d’Arnaud.
“Overall it was OK, but it was tougher to swallow when you do couple those things where you kind of beat yourself,” he said.
Cardinals manager Mike Matheny liked what he saw from Lyons.
“He did a nice job and got into a tough spot there and had to work himself out,” he said.
“The non-plays, the free bases, they get us. That’s all there is to it. When we’re not hitting, they really glare,” he said.
Wright lined an early RBI single that extended his hitting streak to 12 games and Kyle Farnsworth earned his first save as the New York’s newest closer.
On an evening when the Mets debuted new camouflage tops to salute the military, they looked sharp. The Cardinals lost for the third time in four games, and have been shut out three times this season.
Mejia (3-0) bounced back well from a torn blister on his right middle finger that limited him to five innings in his last start. The 24-year-old righty began the game by getting Matt Carpenter to look at three straight strikes, and rarely was in trouble.
Mejia struck out seven in 6 2-3 innings and walked three. Scott Rice and Carlos Torres each got two outs before Farnsworth entered.
Mejia escaped his biggest jam in the sixth when, with runners at the corners and one out, he retired Matt Holliday on a popup and Matt Adams on a grounder.
The previous inning, the Mets backed Mejia with a sweet double play. Shortstop Ruben Tejada dived to stop Jon Jay’s grounder up the middle and flipped to Murphy, and the second baseman made a barehanded catch and spun quickly for the relay.
NOTES: Cardinals C Yadier Molina stretched his hitting streak to 12 games. … St. Louis SS Jhonny Peralta was hitless in three at-bats and is in an 0-for-15 rut. … Cardinals RHP Adam Wainwright (3-1, 1.80) starts Tuesday night against RHP Dillon Gee (1-0, 3.71) in the second game of a four-game series. … Kelly strained his left hamstring trying to beat out a bunt last week and was put on the 15-day disabled list. St. Louis RHP Eric Fornataro made his major league debut and pitched a perfect eighth. Molina waited outside the dugout to pat him on the head. “I haven’t pitched in about a week. That was the biggest part not being on the mound in a week,” Fornataro said. “I kind of just toned it down a little bit and tried to throw strikes, tried not to worry about throwing too hard or anything.”