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Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Morning Briefing: Back to work

By Adam Rubin

NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: The Mets will attempt to avoid their first seven-game losing streak since the first month Terry Collins was on the job in 2011 when they host the National League Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday at 7:10 p.m.

Although the Mets could have skipped Daisuke Matsuzaka’s start and used a four-man rotation this turn because of Monday’s off-day, the Amazin’s will proceed with Matsuzaka (2-0, 3.21 ERA) opening the series. He opposes right-hander Marco Estrada (5-2, 4.19).

Read the Mets-Brewers series preview here.

Tuesday’s news reports:


Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY SportsHow hot is Terry Collins' seat? It depends which publication you read.


• Mike Puma in the Post writes that Collins’ managerial seat is “sizzling,” while Kristie Ackert in the Daily News reports the manager is “not yet on the hot seat.”

Writes columnist Ken Davidoff in the Post:

My sense is the Mets, who begin a critical homestand Tuesday night against National League Central-leading Milwaukee, would rather keep Terry Collins at least through the duration of the 2014 season. Likewise, I don’t see the Mets players quitting on Collins. If anything, they’re trying too hard to alleviate the pressure.

Which is why it makes sense to give Collins more rope before removing him from his office.

Writes columnist Bill Madden in the Daily News:

You wonder what [Sandy] Alderson or anyone can do to make this team better and give Mets fans at least some hope.

They’ve already fired the hitting coach, which changed nothing. If the team continues to lose like this, Terry Collins’ job could be on the line -- although, that, too, would be nothing more than a “need-a-scapegoat” firing, unless you feel it’s fair to blame all the wild pitches, failure to turn double plays, baserunning blunders, etc. on the manager.

Daniel Murphy visited the White House on Monday’s off-day to take part in the Working Families Summit. Murphy had received talk-radio flak for going on paternity leave to be present for the birth of his first child. Read more in the Times and Star-Ledger.

David Wright has overtaken Nolan Arenado for first place among National League third basemen in the latest voting tally released by MLB for the 2014 All-Star Game. Wright has a 92,718-vote lead over the slick-fielding-but-injured Rockie. Read more in the Daily News and at MLB.com.

Travis d’Arnaud’s demotion resonated with Lucas Duda and Ruben Tejada, both of whom have suffered the same fate, writes Mike Vorkunov in the Star-Ledger. "You go down there and it’s more like a humbling," Duda told Vorkunov. "It humbles you. You kind of -- not sulk -- but those first two, three days, you kind of feel bad for yourself. At least I did. ‘Poor me. Why?’ Then when you look at it, it kind of fuels you." Read more in the Daily News.

• Michael Salfino in the Journal writes that, statistically, things do not bode well for d’Arnaud having a bright career. Writes Salfino:

Since 1930, only eight catchers have seen their OPS after their age-25 season improve at least 100 points compared to before, according to Stats, LLC. (A minimum of 250 plate appearances were required through age 25 and 3,000 after, indicating sustained success.)

Of that group, the biggest gainer is familiar to Mets fans. Todd Hundley managed only a .626 OPS through age 25, then improved that by nearly 200 points for the balance of his career. That included a 41-homer season in 1996, one of four post-age-25 seasons for Hundley with at least 24 homers.

Jeremy Hefner plans to make roughly 15 throws off a mound on Tuesday. Those will mark his first tosses off a mound since undergoing Tommy John surgery on Aug. 28, 2013.

• Marc Carig in Newsday details the Mets’ hitting woes during their six-game losing streak.

Gonzalez Germen inherited two runners with two outs in the sixth and coaxed a groundout from the lone batter he faced in what should be his final rehab appearance with Class A St. Lucie.

• Relief prospect Jeff Walters, who is on the 40-man roster, has a torn UCL in his pitching elbow.

• ESPN’s Keith Law breaks down NL teams’ drafts here (ESPN Insider content). In one part of his Mets review, Law writes:

Eudor Garcia-Pacheco (Round 4) is a third baseman out of El Paso Community College who just turned 20 a few weeks ago; he'll move to first in pro ball but has very quick, strong hands, and power from the left side. Righty Josh Prevost (Round 5) had just 73 innings pitched in total over his first three years at Seton Hall, but threw 116 this year and walked only 20 men, sitting 91-94 with some downhill plane (you'd hope so, since he's 6-foot-8) and an above-average slider in the 79-83 mph range. Tyler Moore (Round 6) of LSU is a solid college catcher but probably a backup in the majors. Dash Winningham (8th round) can't run, which is just a shame.

Their late flier was on Iowa righty Keaton McKinney (Round 28), a strong commit to Arkansas but well worth a seven-figure bonus if the Mets have room for it, and they should have some extra coin left over given the signable guys they took after round three. 

Rafael Montero allowed six runs (one earned) in three innings in his second start since returning to Triple-A. Zach Lutz committed two errors behind him and also homered as the 51s lost to Colorado Springs, 11-5. Las Vegas has lost 17 of 22. Read the full minor-league recap here.

Eric Young Jr. (hamstring) will attempt to run the bases on Tuesday in Port St. Lucie, the Daily News reports.

San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy believes he knows why Zack Wheeler hit Hunter Pence with a pitch Sunday but would not reveal his logic, the San Francisco Chronicle’s Hank Schulman tweets.

John Lannan, who dealt with a personal matter for seven weeks, has rejoined the organization.

• Triple-A outfielder Cesar Puello is interviewed at MetsMinors.

• SNY announced it will televise a slate of “limited-commercial” games beginning Thursday.

BIRTHDAYS: Hofstra product/YES commentator Ken Singleton, who began his major league career with the Mets, turns 67. ... St. Lucie infielder Jairo Perez is 26.

TWEET OF THE DAY:

@AdamRubinESPN @UpperDekker maybe our luck is changing.. The last few years the horse would have hit you.. #LGM

— Peter Lynch (@PeteLynch321) June 9, 2014
YOU’RE UP: Should the Mets leave the manager and coaching staff intact?