Did manager Don Mattingly lift Jarlin Garcia too soon?
That’s the question many will be asking after Mattingly pulled Garcia with a no-hitter going through six innings and the Marlins leading 1-0.
In the end, the Mets struck late for a 4-1 victory.
Garcia, who was making his first Major League start, had thrown only 77 pitches when Mattingly turned to his bullpen in the seventh. It was only then that the Mets managed to break through with their first hit — a two-out single off Drew Steckenrider — before striking for four runs in the eighth.
The win was the eighth in a row for the red-hot Mets and gave them a series sweep over the Marlins.
Mattingly told reporters before Wednesday’s game that Garcia was under no pitch-count restrictions.
But, as Garcia makes the conversion from reliever to starter, he had cautioned previously that the pitcher’s workload would be carefully managed this season.
Garcia had thrown a career-high 73 pitches in his previous outing, a relief appearance on April 5.
It wasn’t as if Garcia was overpowering on Wednesday, though.
The Mets had no trouble making contact off Garcia, who struck out three batters, with two of those belonging to Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler. They were just unable to get anything to bounce through the hole or drop in for hits until he was no longer on the mound.
The Marlins didn’t exactly muster much offensively, either.
Miguel Rojas’ first-inning home run was one of only two Marlins hits, the other being a second-inning single by Chad Wallach.
NOTES: Veteran starting pitching help could soon be on the way for the Marlins, as both Wei-Yin Chen and Dan Straily are continuing to make progress toward their return from arm injuries. Chen is scheduled to pitch three innings on Thursday in extended spring training while Straily is set to begin his injury rehab assignment Friday by throwing four innings Friday for Single A Jupiter. ... Pitcher Jacob Turner has accepted an outright assignment to Triple A New Orleans after being designated over the weekend.