PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The monster home run that Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton hit against Jack Leathersich in the seventh inning on Monday may have traveled more than 500 feet, striking the upper portion of a three-tier chain-link fence that serves as the hitters' backdrop on an adjacent field.
Earlier in the at-bat, he hit a foul ball that may have traveled even farther.
According to manager Terry Collins, Stanton has more power than any player he's seen. He excluded Dave Kingman, Mickey Mantle and Frank Howard from his assessment, having never watched them play in person.
Stanton's home run brought to mind a final-pitch home run that former Met Butch Huskey hit in Spring Training in 1993. His was a rocket over the head of Braves outfielder Melvin Nieves that barely made it over the left-field wall, but the ball hardly had stopped traveling. It struck a tree that was 75 1/2 feet from the back of the wall at a height of 8 1/2 feet. The fence was eight feet tall.
So the ball -- somehow -- was still rising when the tree got in its way.
Braves players still were talking about it and seeking information about Huskey the following morning. The next time the Braves played in Port St. Lucie, Nieves went to the tree to see the damaged bark. Two years later the tree died of, in the words of Todd Hundley, "unnatural causes."
Mets make first set of roster cuts
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The Mets made their first cuts on Monday, optioning left-handers Josh Edgin and Steven Matz, right-hander Erik Goeddel, infielder Wilfredo Tovar and outfielder Cesar Puello.
The club also reassigned to Minor League camp right-handers John Church, Logan Verrett and Chasen Bradford; left-handers Adam Kolarek and Jack Leathersich; catcher Kevin Plawecki; infielders Danny Muno and Dustin Lawley; and outfielders Brandon Nimmo and Cory Vaughn.
According to manager Terry Collins, the next set of cuts won't be made until after the team returns from its two-day, three-game excursion to Las Vegas this weekend.
Decreased velocity behind Edgin's cut
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- With Josh Edgin among Monday's roster cuts, Scott Rice and John Lannan stand as the left-handers with a chance to pitch out of the bullpen.
Edgin, who made 34 appearances with the Mets each of the past two seasons, was upset by the decision -- "He should be," manager Terry Collins said -- but the Mets aren't comfortable with his diminished velocity: 95 mph two years ago to 92 mph this spring.
The decrease, Collins acknowledged, might be attributable to Edgin's trying to develop a changeup for right-handed hitters, saying it could be a case of "use it or you lose it."
Otherwise, the club seems stumped by the loss of miles per hour.
"He dominated left-handed hitters two years ago," Collins said. "It's best if he goes down and gets his confidence back."
• Daniel Murphy missed Monday's game because of his badly scraped right shin, an injury he sustained on Friday.
• Lucas Duda, who has merely seven at-bats this spring because of a pulled hamstring, said that his injury has improved markedly in the past 24 hours, and he expects to play late in the week.
• Ike Davis, who has been limited to six at-bats because of tight muscles in both calves, sported a boot on his right leg for the second consecutive day, and his prognosis remains unclear.
"I'm doing everything I can to get back so I can play and get the swings I need," Davis said.
• Mets announcer and former pitcher Bobby Ojeda wears a media credential on a lanyard. The name printed on it: "Bob O'Jeda."
Happy St. Patty's Day, Bobby O.
• On Tuesday, for the second time, the Mets and Cardinals will test the instant-replay system. The Mets will play five more spring games with the system in place.
Marty Noble is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.