Three homers, but Young's shoulder OK

April, 26, 2011

Greg Fiume/Getty Images
Chris Young surrendered three solo homers and received a no-decision after lasing 4 2/3 innings against the Washington Nationals in his return from the disabled list.
Chris Young allowed three solo homers and lasted only 4 2/3 innings, snapping a string of six straight starts in which Mets starting pitchers had completed six innings. Still, Young suggested after the Mets ran their winning streak to five games with a 6-4 win against the Washington Nationals that his shoulder felt fine.

Young had landed on the disabled list with right biceps tendinitis, necessitating two starts from Dillon Gee before the veteran right-hander returned Tuesday.

“The shoulder felt good. It felt really good,” Young said. “I felt like the ball had pretty good life. Just command wasn’t as sharp as I would like. It’s just a function of having 15 days off. I threw some good pitches, and not as many as I’d like. But we won the game, so I’m happy.”

Josh Thole said all three homers Young surrendered -- two to Wilson Ramos, one to Jayson Werth -- came on mid-80s mph fastballs that had too much of the plate.

Young said he wasn’t merely trying to get through the outing healthy.

“Not really,” he said. “My goal was to go out and pitch a good baseball game. I’ll worry about tomorrow then. My goal for tonight was to contribute to a win. It wasn’t as pretty as I’d like.”

Terry Collins pulled Young with two out in the fifth, during an inning in which Young walked opposing pitcher Jordan Zimmermann and Danny Espinosa. Both Nats were in scoring position with two out when Ryota Igarashi entered and struck out Werth to preserve a 3-all tie.

“What I saw, he was starting to run out of gas,” said Collins, who pulled Young at 88 pitches. “He stopped making some pitches, so I thought he was getting fatigued.”

Young had struggled in starts in cold weather before landing on the DL to keep his shoulder loose, and resorted to throwing between innings in those early April outings. This time, given the balmy night in D.C., Young had no issues keeping his shoulder loose. Still, he was hurt stamina-wise by congestion and illness that sapped his energy, along with being away from game action for 15 days.

“I didn’t think about my arm once,” Young said. “…I wish I had pitched deeper in the game, but ultimately it didn’t matter. The bullpen picked me up. Guys scored the runs.”

Adam Rubin

ESPN Staff Writer
Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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