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Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Mets morning briefing 7.13.11

By Adam Rubin

Francisco Rodriguez is a Met no more. After the All-Star Game, the Mets announced they had shipped K-Rod to the Milwaukee Brewers with cash for two players to be named (often minor leaguers, and not always jaw-dropping). The Post reports the Mets will eat $5 million. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports the Brewers probably won't use Rodriguez as a closer -- at least not primarily. That's their problem now.

Sandy Alderson is due to address reporters on a conference call Wednesday afternoon. In the interim, here's my stab at the relevant answers.

Wednesday's news reports:

• Brewers GM Doug Melvin told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel's Tom Haudricourt: "We're trying to get as many quality pitchers as we can for the last 2½ months of the season. We're trying to get as much quality as we can. This gives us another quality arm in the bullpen. I talked to (closer) John (Axford) and I told him not to worry about it. I told him roles will be dictated by games and by (manager) Ron (Roenicke). I couldn't walk away from the chance to get a pitcher like Francisco and wish later I hadn't let him get away. We've had some injuries in our bullpen, including (setup man Takashi) Saito, and if I let (Rodriguez) get away and somebody went down, I'd kick myself."

• Read trade coverage in the Journal-SentinelDaily NewsTimes, Star-Ledger, Newsday and Record.

• Post columnist Joel Sherman sums it up well. Essentially, $17.5 million in 2012 would be crippling. This had to be done, even if it meant compromising some of the competitiveness the Mets have now in a faux race. Writes Sherman:

K-Rod’s $17.5 million vesting option for 2012 was the time bomb ticking on the Mets all season. They simply could not let it explode on next year’s payroll, dimming -- among other things -- their chances to keep Jose Reyes. So Alderson defused the problem by moving Rodriguez and $5 million to the Brewers for two players to be named. Look, Alderson was hired because the Mets needed an adult in the room. They needed someone who made reasonable, big-picture choices rather than continue with the decision-of-the-moment way in which the Mets had operated for so long.

Carlos Beltran went 1-for-2 in the All-Star Game as the DH. He struck out against Jered Weaver on a 76 mph changeup in the first inning, then produced an infield single on a grounder to shortstop to open the bottom of the fourth against C.J. Wilson. Beltran scored on Prince Fielder's three-run homer.

• San Francisco closer Brian Wilson says he would love to have Beltran as a teammate. Read more in the Post.

• Commissioner Bud Selig said David Einhorn is progressing toward the purchase of a minority share of the Mets, with no major obstacles remaining. Read more in the Journal and Newsday.

• Einhorn, by the way, is out of the World Series of Poker, The Wall Street Journal reports. Writes Ben Cohen:

He survived the no-limit Texas Hold 'Em tournament's first day with 94,400 in chips but was bounced around the dinner break Monday, his second day of competition, a World Series of Poker spokesman said. Einhorn had been playing for about 16 hours in the same sweatshirt, covered in his family's painted handprints, that he wore when he almost made the final table five years ago.

• Selig all but pledged the 2013 All-Star Game to the Mets and Citi Field, which had actually been already known. Read more in Newsday.

David Wright's rehab with Class A St. Lucie should start Friday at Lakeland, Fla., a team official told ESPNNewYork.com. Wright will need 30 to 40 at-bats in the minors, Terry Collins has indicated. Wright told TCPalm.com, the Port St. Lucie-area newspapers: "I've been taking batting practice outside and taking groundballs full-go."

BIRTHDAY: Catcher Mike Fitzgerald was born on this date in 1960. After two seasons with the Mets, Fitzgerald was traded to the Montreal Expos on Dec. 10, 1984 with Hubie Brooks, Herm Winningham and Floyd Youmans for Gary Carter.