MIAMI (AP) — Whiffing on a lusty swing for strike three, Bartolo Colon sent his helmet flying. He sheepishly retrieved it and tugged the bill low over his eyes while walking to the dugout, as if he hoped not to be recognized.
So it goes for New York Mets pitchers at the plate.
Colon and the rest of the Mets staff remained hitless this year, and their teammates didn't fare much better against Henderson Alvarez, who pitched a six-hitter to help the Miami Marlins win 3-0 Tuesday night.
Colon (2-5) allowed three runs in seven innings. He also went 0 for 2, striking out both times, leaving Mets pitchers at 0 for 56 this season with 30 strikeouts.
Colon, a longtime American Leaguer, is 0 for 11 with eight strikeouts.
"I know that I'm not a good hitter," he said through a translator. "This is all new for me."
Other Mets pitchers don't have that excuse, but with six walks this year, their on-base-plus-slugging percentage is .097. Last year Mets pitchers batted .115 to rank third-worst in NL, and tied for the major league lead at their position with 140 strikeouts.
"We stress from the first day of spring training that pitchers have to be a little more athletic, they've got to handle the bat a little bit better," manager Terry Collins said. "We hit every day, like everybody does. We bunt, we run the bases, we do all the things that everybody else does. We just have to put the ball in play. We've just got to change up some things when we get home, and see if we can get them out on the field a little bit more, and see if that will help."
Miami improved to a major league-best 16-5 at Marlins Park, and is 7-1 on its current homestand with one game left. The Marlins clinched the series and have won seven of their eight home series — they are 2-10 on the road.
"We're playing with a lot of confidence right now," manager Mike Redmond said. "Hopefully we can finish it off Wednesday and go on the road and start winning some games out of our suitcase. That's big right now in our development process."
Alvarez (2-2) completed the victory by striking out Curtis Granderson on three pitches with a runner on third. He retired the side in order only three times but was helped by two double plays and a fine play by third baseman Casey McGehee, who threw out a batter from foul territory.
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