Marcus Stroman can get fired up even over a simulated game.
As he stayed at Clover Park to get in his work, honoring the long-standing tradition of not providing too many sneak previews to division opponents — the Mets played their scheduled game at Jupiter against the Marlins — the right-hander took pride in particular in a couple of changeups that went for strikes against switch-hitter Jed Lowrie, batting from the left side.
“That’s my sixth pitch that I’ve had in my repertoire. It’s slowly growing to be a pretty good pitch,” Stroman said. “I feel like I have so many weapons. I feel like I can go to any pitch in any count. So it’s extremely gratifying when I’m able to get a swing through by a lefty. … It gives me a lot of confidence.”
According to MLB.com’s Baseball Savant website, Stroman threw his changeup 5.3 percent of the time last year, fourth most often after his sinker (36.3 percent), slider (30.9) and cutter (24.1). He also utilized a four-seam fastball (2.4) and curveball (1 percent).
Stroman threw four “innings” Monday, tossing nearly 70 pitches, he said, and allowing what may or may not have been a Ryan Cordell home run to left field (it was a close call).
“Felt great, felt great,” Stroman said. “Body feels good, arm feels good. … Pretty much right where I need to be.”
Luis Rojas watched the first two innings of the sim game before leaving for the Mets’ Grapefruit League game, and continues to be impressed with the right-hander.
“He doesn’t lack any confidence,’’ Rojas said. “He has a lot of energy.”
Rojas added Stroman was able to adjust throughout the outing with catcher Rene Rivera.
“They had a conversation ongoing between innings in the dugout about what his pitches were doing,’’ Rojas said. “It’s a good conversation to have.”
Both Stroman and Noah Syndergaard are expected to stay back in Port St. Lucie for sim games instead of traveling with the team to the West Coast of the state on Friday and Saturday.
Pete Alonso played again in Monday’s 1-1 tie and has started six games in seven days. Part of the workload was due to J.D. Davis being out with a jammed shoulder, but Rojas said Alonso wanted to be out there. The manager added Alonso has adjusted his daily routine after his first season in the majors.
“He’s learning new things,’’ Rojas said. “He’s always been an extra [hard] worker. Now it’s the first time coming in having played a 162-game [season] and he’s shaping his routine a little more. He’s taking less ground balls, less swings because he feels good right now. Less is more for him now.”
Walker Lockett got the start against the Marlins and tossed three scoreless innings. There’s no room for the right-hander in the rotation and he’s out of minor league options, meaning the Mets would have to put him on waivers to keep him.
“I recognize things,’’ Lockett said of his place in the competition for the rotation. “Any way I can help the team is what I want to do.”
And he’s aware of what his future might be.
“It’s in the back of my head,’’ Lockett said. “All I can do is perform and let the chips fall where they may.’’
Matt Adams, in his first game back after undergoing heart tests, went 0-for-3 as the DH. … Dellin Betances is scheduled to make his second appearance of the spring Wednesday after struggling with his velocity and command in his Saturday debut.
Seth Lugo made his spring debut, returning from a fractured pinky toe to toss a scoreless inning. The right-hander said the toe will likely remain fractured “for a while,’’ but it felt fine and didn’t affect him on the mound.
Rick Porcello takes the mound against the Astros at 1:05 p.m. on Tuesday in West Palm Beach, Fla.