Art Howe had no idea who Eric Valent was -- other than some guy wearing No. 57 -- when he first reported to Port St. Lucie this spring.
A long-shot from the get-go, Valent impressed the Mets with his bat and glove during the Grapefruit League season, making the team after the club dealt Timo Perez and Roger Cedeno.
Now, with Cliff Floyd and Karim Garcia nursing injuries, Valent is hoping to make the big-league impact he missed in previous stints with the Phillies and Reds.
Mets Inside Pitch: You made your first start as a Met (Wednesday), playing right field on a soggy, miserable night here at Shea. What was that experience like for you?
Eric Valent: It was nice to get the spot start, and I wish we'd done a little bit better as a team, but there's plenty of season left. It's good to be able to fill in while some guys are hurt - Karim (Garcia) will be healthy soon...