PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Travis Taijeron hit a three-run homer Thursday, keeping the Mets' offense hot in a 7-2 win over the Cardinals at Tradition Field.
One of the Mets' most consistent hitters this spring, Taijeron went deep off Austin Gomber in the seventh inning to snap a 2-2 tie. That was part of a four-run rally for the Mets, who also received a Ty Kelly RBI groundout against Gomber.
"Big power," was how Mets manager Terry Collins described Taijeron's game. "We're looking for a right-handed bat off the bench, so we're searching right now. We're looking for that kind of a bat and seeing who can produce in Spring Training."
After hitting 25 homers at Triple-A Las Vegas last season, Taijeron is batting .412 with seven RBIs in eight spring games.
Mets starter Noah Syndergaard was the game's early star, allowing a lone hit over three scoreless innings. With a fastball sitting from the mid- to upper-90s, Syndergaard struck out two batters and walked no one in his Grapefruit League debut.
But Cardinals starter Jaime Garcia threw up zeroes even deeper into the game, delivering 3 2/3 innings of scoreless ball. Garcia whiffed two batters, allowing three hits and a walk.
Matt Adams finally broke the scoreless tie with a two-run homer off Josh Smoker in the fourth. An inning later, Ruben Tejada tied things up with a two-run shot of his own. Wilmer Flores also collected multiple hits for the Mets, while Cardinals outfielder Stephen Piscotty singled, walked and scored in three plate appearances.
Up next for the Mets: Rookie left-hander Steven Matz will make his second spring start Friday against the Nationals in Viera, Fla. Matz garnered rave reviews during his Grapefruit League debut last week, striking out three over three innings. He'll oppose Stephen Strasburg and should have an opportunity to face plenty of Nationals regulars in the 1:05 p.m. ET game.
Up Next for the Cardinals: Another Cardinals pitcher will make his 2016 spring debut Friday when right-hander Carlos Martinez takes the mound against a split Braves squad at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla. It will be the first start for Martinez since he was shut down late last September with right shoulder tightness. Right-hander Seung Hwan Oh, the all-time Korean saves leader whom the Cardinals signed in January, also is scheduled to pitch in relief. Jhoulys Chacin is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Braves.