Morning Briefing: Rotation in flux


FIRST PITCH: It's the day baseball will announce the All-Star teams. It's also the day the Mets will decide officially whether Jon Niese will pitch again before the All-Star break.

It appears he won't, and manager Terry Collins admitted Saturday night that the Mets are considering putting Niese on the disabled list. Collins wouldn't say why, but sources told ESPNNY.com's Adam Rubin that the reason is concern about his left shoulder, rather than the line drive that knocked him out of his start Friday night against the Texas Rangers.

So the Mets' rotation could well be changing this week, with Dillon Gee likely to come off the disabled list to take Niese's spot. No change today, though, with Zack Wheeler (3-8, 4.25) getting the start in the finale of the holiday weekend series with the Rangers. Right-hander Nick Tepesch (3-3, 3.65) starts for Texas.

Sunday's news reports:

Bartolo Colon had another bad first inning, and while he recovered, the Mets didn't, losing 5-3 to the Rangers. Read game stories in the Post, Daily News, Times and Newsday.

• Niese was said to be unhappy about the possibility of going on the DL, and he declined to speak to reporters after Saturday's game (and was unavailable for comment before the game). Read more on Niese in the Post and Daily News.

• The big trade between the Oakland Athletics and Chicago Cubs had some Mets fans dreaming of trade for Starlin Castro, since the Cubs are now flush with shortstop talent. But as David Lennon writes in Newsday, Castro to the Mets doesn't seem to have any legs at all right now. Besides, Castro is hardly a player suited to the Mets' hitting philosophy.

BIRTHDAYS: Willie Randolph turns 60 today. ... Lance Johnson is 51.


YOU'RE UP: What do you think of Jon Niese likely going on the DL (and Dillon Gee likely coming off the DL)?