Mets send Providence grad McHugh to minor league camp

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Collin McHugh's first major league spring training didn't go nearly as well as his debut with the New York Mets last August.

The Mets play the Braves at Champion Stadium today, but the Providence Christian graduate is already in minor league camp back in Port St. Lucie.

McHugh, 25, was optioned to Class AAA Las Vegas after allowing 10 hits and five runs over 4 innings in three Grapefruit League appearances.

That was in stark contrast to the right-hander's first game for the Mets last season against the Rockies at Citi Field in New York, when he allowed two hits and struck out nine over seven scoreless innings.

But McHugh tailed off badly after that and went to spring training a longshot to be on the opening day roster. In eight appearances, including four starts, he was 0-4 with 7.59 ERA last season.

That McHugh got to the majors was quite an accomplishment, though. He was an 18th-round draft choice out of Berry College and was still in Class A at the start of the 2011 season.

McHugh finally got the Mets' attention by going 8-2 with a 2.89 ERA for Class AA Binghamton to end that season, and had a combined 2.79 ERA with Binghamton and Class AAA Buffalo when he was promoted to the majors last August.

The Mets' Class AAA affiliation shifted from Buffalo to Las Vegas of the Pacific Coast League this year.