Morning briefing: Wheeler debut in Atlanta?

May, 6, 2013
5/06/13
6:27
AM ET
FIRST PITCH: The Mets take another day off today before beginning a six-game homestand against the Chicago White Sox and Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Sox are managed by Robin Ventura. Super Joe McEwing is a member of that staff.

Monday's news reports:

• Zack Wheeler turned in his second straight strong outing with Triple-A Las Vegas, limiting Sacramento to three hits and a walk in six scoreless innings Sunday. Sandy Alderson has suggested Wheeler needs to turn in a string of positive starts before promotion consideration is made.

Bear this in mind: The Mets will need an extra starter during a June 17-20 series at Turner Field, which will now be a five-game series because of Saturday's postponement. That likely would come after the Super 2 deadline, meaning Wheeler would miss an extra year of arbitration eligibility. It probably would be a sweet moment for him, too, since he grew up in Dallas, Ga., outside Atlanta. Of course, this is all speculation.

Read about Wheeler and Sunday's full minor league recap here.

• Alderson told Kristie Ackert in the Daily News about Jordany Valdespin: "It’s no secret Jordany has had a slightly different approach to some things. There is a certain level of tolerance that we have. I hope he doesn’t exceed that level. ... I am not sure anything ultimately will hold him back. He has a great deal of talent. In most cases, talent is only realized if it is nurtured and developed, and that can be done by an organization, but it ultimately has to be done on an individual basis as well. I am hoping Jordany will continue to mature. He has, I think, made progress. Hope he continues to do so on that front.”

Jonathon Niese walked a career-high six and the Mets had a disastrous five-run third inning in a 9-4 loss to the Braves on Sunday. Niese is winless in four starts since April 12. Read game recaps in the Post, Daily News, Star-Ledger, Newsday, Record, Times, Journal and MLB.com.

Matt Harvey will wait until Tuesday to start. He will face the Chicago White Sox. Harvey plans to spend today's off-day cheering on the NHL's Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Read more on Harvey and the impact of weather delays in the Post, Daily News, Star-Ledger, Times and Record.

• Columnist Kevin Kernan in the Post offers no defense of the Mets' defense. Writes Kernan:

The Braves are simply much more athletic than the Mets, and you can start in left field where the Mets play lumbering Lucas Duda while the Braves went out and acquired the marvelous Justin Upton. This was a game that Jon Niese was clubbed around by the Braves’ hitters, but the Mets’ shaky and stagnant defense did not help the lefty in any way as the Braves rolled to a 9-4 victory.

BIRTHDAYS: Hall of Famer Willie Mays, who played his final two major league seasons with the Mets, is 82.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU'RE UP: Should whether Zack Wheeler gets an extra year of arbitration be a consideration in when he is promoted?
Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Bartolo Colon
WINS ERA SO IP
11 3.85 125 161
OTHER LEADERS
BAD. Murphy .297
HRL. Duda 22
RBIL. Duda 66
RD. Murphy 69
OPSL. Duda .830
ERAZ. Wheeler 3.49
SOZ. Wheeler 145