KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) - Oliver Perez allowed his first four batters to reach and gave up three runs in the first before settling down with two scoreless innings. Not the type of outing that gave the New York Mets confidence.
Hunter Pence singled in a run off the left-hander and Carlos Lee hit a two-run double, leading the Houston Astros over the Mets 5-4 Tuesday in a split-squad game.
Coming off an 0-5 record with a 6.80 ERA last season, Perez is owed $12 million in the final season of his contract. Mets manager Terry Collins said he will meet with general manager Sandy Alderson on Wednesday and make a decision on the 29-year-old, who could be sent to the bullpen.
"We'll have to talk," Perez said. "Right now I feel good starting games, but that's not my decision. All my career I've been a starter."
Pence, who added a double in the third inning, is 11-for-21 this spring training.
"I still have a lot of work to do. You can throw everything out the window in the early spring," he said. "Yeah, if you're hitting the ball good it's positive, but it doesn't mean that much. I want to continue to have good at bats, continue to be aggressive and be ready to hit. Hopefully I'm going to be able to put some strings together like this throughout the season."
Astros starter Nelson Figueroa pitched three innings, giving up a run on a sacrifice fly by Zach Lutz.
J.R. Towles homered for the Astros off Pat Misch in the fourth.