Morning Briefing: Can Mets stop Nats?


FIRST PITCH: Are the Mets ever going to beat the Nationals at Citi Field?

Yes, ever is a long time. Yes, the Mets technically have beaten the Nationals at Citi Field.

Just not anytime recently.

The Nationals have a nine-game winning streak in Queens, a streak the Mets wouldn't mind putting an end to when Bartolo Colon (11-9, 3.97) takes the mound on Wednesday night. Right-hander Jordan Zimmermann (7-5, 3.06) starts for the Nationals.

Zimmermann is only 3-2 in eight career starts at Citi. Dillon Gee beat him 2-0 in April 2013, in a rare Mets home win over Washington. Since Sept. 12, 2011, the Mets are 4-23 at home against the Nationals.

Wednesday's news reports:

Rafael Montero returned to the Mets rotation for the first time since May, and the results weren't good. Read game stories in the Post, Daily News, Times, Newsday and at MLB.com.

• The Mets say they may once again slow down Matt Harvey's rehab from Tommy John surgery. General manager Sandy Alderson said he has spoken with Harvey since Jeremy Hefner suffered a devastating setback in his own Tommy John rehab, and he referred to Hefner's experience as a "cautionary story." There's no real reason that Hefner should affect Harvey, except that it gives the Mets an example to show Harvey when they try to get him to agree to the slower plan they want.

Harvey was never likely to pitch in a major league game this season, but he's now less likely to pitch in any kind of game before spring training. And spring training is still what should matter most to Harvey, to the Mets and to Mets/Harvey fans. Read more in the Post, Daily News, Times, Newsday and MLB.com.

Columnist Kevin Kernan in the Post says Alderson and the Mets are doing the right thing in protecting Harvey from himself.

• Alderson also said the Mets chose Montero over Noah Syndergaard for Tuesday's start on "merit," although he mentioned 40-man roster issues and Syndergaard's innings limit, too. Alderson wouldn't commit to even having Syndergaard pitch in the major leagues this season (or even at the start of next season). Read more in the Daily News.

Syndergaard allowed three runs in 6 1/3 innings Tuesday night for Triple-A Las Vegas.

David Wright extended his hitting streak to 11 games, but he's done it with almost all singles (and with no home runs). Marc Carig in Newsday wonders where Wright's power has gone, and more importantly whether it will come back. (Spoiler alert: Carig has numbers to suggest that it will.)

BIRTHDAYS: Vinegar Bend Mizell, who appeared in 17 games for the 1962 Mets, was born on this date in 1930 . . . Jon Switzer, who appeared in four games for the 2009 Mets, is 35.


YOU'RE UP: Are the Mets doing the right thing by slowing Matt Harvey's rehab?