Mets' Mejia Remains With Buffalo Despite Hot Start

NEW YORK—The Mets shuttled pitchers in and out of Queens in a harsh April, but still they resisted the temptation to call upon Triple-A Buffalo righthander Jenrry Mejia.

New York's new front-office regime resisted rushing Mejia where last season's iteration, under the gun to win now, brought the then 20-year-old north from spring training for Opening Day.

In the season's first month, the Mets already had cycled through relievers with abandon, calling on Ryota Igarashi and Jason Isringhausen, while sending out Blaine Boyer and D.J. Carrasco. Veteran lefty Pat Misch arrived and departed all in one day. The Mets called up righthander Dillon Gee to make a spot start before transferring him to the bullpen, where he remained.

But Mejia stayed put, even when his first two outings for the Bisons yielded just seven hits and no runs in 12 1⁄3 innings of work. It looked like the lively, mid-90s fastball that tantalized Mets management last year was now harnessed and ready.
Mejia faltered in his third and fourth outings, allowing eight runs and 14 baserunners over 11 2⁄3 innings, but it didn't matter because the Mets want him to stay with Buffalo.

"Ideally, we would like him to develop consistency," general manager Sandy Alderson said.

Consistency was something that Mejia could not aspire to last year as he yo-yoed from the big league bullpen to the minor league rotation to the disabled list to, finally, a September callup to pitch in the rotation. He finished his rookie season at a disheartening 0-4, 4.62 in 33 appearances, including three starts.

Mejia had to endure the questions and speculation, which included flying his mother in from the Dominican Republic to watch his starts, hoping she would see his first big league victory.

"The best way to gain that consistency and to develop all of his pitches is to get as many innings as possible," Alderson said. "Having him start now is the best way to do that. Ideally, if we don't need him this year, (then) that means that the six or seven starters we have will have done their job pretty well."


• Righthander Scott Moviel, pitching in the shadows of Matt Harvey and Jeurys Familia at high Class A St. Lucie, improved to 3-0, 2.66 through his first four starts with a seven-inning complete game on April 25.

• Low Class A Savannah third baseman Aderlin Rodriguez, making his full-season debut, began the year in a 3-for-36 (.086) funk before righting the ship to bat 10-for-35 (.286) with four doubles and two homers.