ST. LOUIS (AP) — Mets manager Terry Collins is batting the pitcher eighth for the first time in franchise history in the town where Tony La Russa often used on the lineup attention-grabber in an effort to boost offense.
Eric Young Jr. was activated off the 15-day disabled list before Monday night's game against the St. Louis Cardinals and was batting ninth behind rookie right-hander Jacob deGrom.
La Russa was the first manager Collins saw use the ploy. He was set on batting Curtis Granderson leadoff and thought the best place for the speedy Young was at the bottom of the lineup ahead of three players with RBI potential, with Daniel Murphy second and David Wright third.
"All I know is there's a guy in the Hall of Fame that did it, so it can't be all bad," Collins said. "You know what, this might be the perfect time. We'll see if it works."
Collins wasn't worried about Young's perception, adding, "When I played, I wanted to see my name in the lineup."
Young entered with 17 steals in 18 attempts. Aside from that he's struggled, batting .220 with a homer, seven RBIs and a .305 on-base percentage in 42 games.