The education of Matt Harvey has begun. After breezing through his first two major league starts, Harvey was taken to school by the lowly Padres, of all teams, on Sunday.
The Padres jumped on Harvey in the first — with one out Everth Cabrera doubled and Chase Headley homered for the early 2-0 lead.
Will Venable led off the second with a triple, but Harvey was able to bear down and strand him there.
With two outs in the third Harvey walked Headley, who then advanced to second on a passed ball by Rob Johnson. Carlos Quentin doubled to score Headley. Yonder Alonso homered to make it 5-0.
The Padres threatened again in the fourth. Cameron Maybin led off with a double and advanced to third on a single by John Baker. Jason Marquis bunted in what looked like a safety squeeze, but Maybin tried to score and was thrown out at home. Harvey struck out the next two batters to keep the Padres from adding to the lead.
The Mets finally got on the board against Marquis in the sixth when Mike Baxter walked and pinch hitter Ronny Cedeno homered into the left field seats to make it 5-2.
Harvey ended up going five innings, allowing five runs on eight hits — seven of them for extra bases. He struck out five and walked one. On the positive side, he was able to get out of those two situations in which the Padres threatened, which shows Harvey has a toughness to him. That’s always good to see.
The Mets cut the gap to 5-3 in the seventh when Ike Davis doubled, advanced to third on a fly out, then tagged up on a sacrifice fly.
However the Padres got the run back in the bottom of the inning when Quentin hit a solo shot off of Ramon Ramirez. Ramirez let up another run in the eighth to make to a 7-3 game.
Mets lose 7-3 and go a respectable 6-5 on the West coast trip.