Morning Briefing: West doormats arrive

May, 23, 2014
May 23
5:34
AM ET
NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: The Mets swept the Arizona Diamondbacks April 14-16 in Phoenix.

Now, they look to continue their success against the National League West cellar dwellers this weekend at Citi Field.

Arizona arrives in Queens with an 18-31 record and on a three-game losing streak after getting swept in St. Louis. The D-backs already have endured six losing streaks of at least three games this season, ESPN Stats & Information notes.

Bartolo Colon (3-5, 5.34 ERA) opposes rookie right-hander Chase Anderson (2-0, 5.06) in Friday’s 7:10 p.m. series opener.

Friday’s news reports:

Juan Lagares delivered a tiebreaking RBI single in the seventh and the Mets salvaged the finale of their series with the Los Angeles Dodgers with a 5-3 win Thursday at Citi Field. Albeit benefiting from a pair of unearned runs, the Mets snapped Zack Greinke’s streak of allowing two or fewer runs in 21 straight starts -- the longest such streak in MLB history. Jenrry Mejia pitched for a second straight day for the first time since 2010 to earn his second save.


Adam Hunger/USA TODAY SportsYasiel Puig had the catch of the day, racing into right-center and diving to rob Wilmer Flores.


Eric Campbell, starting in the majors for the first time in left field, contributed a sacrifice fly and also made a dazzling eighth-inning catch to initiate a double play.

Jonathon Niese had surrendered a game-tying two-run homer to ex-Met Justin Turner in the top of the seventh. Pitching coach Dan Warthen had noticed Niese elevating his pitches that inning and had planned to go to the mound if Turner had reached base.

Read game recaps in the Post, Daily News, Newsday, Times, Star-Ledger, Record, Journal and at MLB.com.

Curtis Granderson doesn’t understand why fans boo. “I’ve always wanted to know why someone would boo, because in the next second they’ll cheer,” Granderson told Jim Baumbach in Newsday. “So which one is it? You like your team or dislike your team? You call yourself a fan and then you’ll boo? …

“I understand you’re a fan, but at the same time, you aren’t playing. I can see you getting that intense as a player or [if you] have played. But if you’re just a fan and watching, enjoy the excitement of the game that is in front of you win, lose or draw, whatever the case is.”

• Columnist John Harper in the Daily News says play the kids. Writes Harper:

It makes sense, since this team can’t be considered a contender, even at a time when parity throughout MLB has lowered the bar for such status.

Of course, it also speaks to a failure by the Mets’ brass to do more in the offseason, specifically in terms of upgrading the offense, which is why the season is careening in the wrong direction.

• Jared Diamond in the Journal notes two members of the bullpen, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Mejia, view themselves as starters in exile. “Looking in from the outside, it may seem that I have become more comfortable,” Matsuzaka told Diamond through an interpreter. “But, for me, it’s still a daily struggle.”

• Read more on Mejia in the Star-Ledger and Daily News.

Travis d’Arnaud has been cleared for baseball activities as he rebounds from a concussion. Terry Collins expects d’Arnaud to have a rehab assignment before being activated from the concussion DL. Read more in the Star-Ledger, Journal, Record, Newsday and at MLB.com.

• Collins has resolved to use Campbell in the middle infield, at least on occasion.

• Dodgers manager Don Mattingly has no problems with the dimensions of Citi Field.

Dillon Gee (lat) will need to pitch in a rehab game as soon as Sunday to ensure he only misses three turns in the rotation.

• Jesse Spector in the Sporting News ranks Sandy Alderson the 23rd-best GM in baseball.

• Howard Megdal at Capital New York suggests Mets brass did not like a tweet read on-air on WOR regarding team ownership.

• TV critic Bob Raissman in the Daily News wonders which SNY analyst will lose it on-air watching the Mets.

• Alex Panteliodis earned the win in his season debut and left-handed reliever Chase Huchingson returned from a 50-game suspension in St. Lucie’s 6-4 win against Clearwater. Savannah’s Miller Diaz, Akeel Morris and Tyler Vanderheiden combined to shut out Lexington, 4-0. Read the full minor-league recap here.

David Wright met with a 12-year-old afflicted with a rare skin disorder before Thursday’s game, Eli Rosenberg writes in the Daily News.

From the bloggers ... Faith and Fear can't help but notice Yasiel Puig.

BIRTHDAYS: Vic Black, who has a 1.45 ERA and seven saves in eight chances with Las Vegas, turns 26. Black has allowed 12 hits and 17 walks (one intentional) in 18 2/3 innings.

TWEETS OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Will the Mets beat up on the Diamondbacks this weekend?
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

BA LEADER
Daniel Murphy
BA HR RBI R
.297 9 51 69
OTHER LEADERS
HRL. Duda 22
RBIL. Duda 66
RD. Murphy 69
OPSL. Duda .830
WB. Colon 11
ERAZ. Wheeler 3.49
SOZ. Wheeler 145