Morning Briefing: TC seems secure for 2015


FIRST PITCH: More than three months after they last had been three games under .500, the Mets (72-76) can ascend to that point again Saturday.

Zack Wheeler (10-9, 3.38 ERA) opposes right-hander Doug Fister (13-8, 2.53) at 7:10 p.m. at Citi Field.

The Mets last were within three games of breakeven on June 4 (28-31).

Saturday’s news reports:

• Jon Heyman at CBSSports.com suggests Terry Collins is “all but certain” to return as manager in 2015. Collins is under contract for next season. And he has the Mets playing well down the stretch, including winning eight of their past 10 games. So there appears little momentum toward making a change. Writes Heyman:

While there hasn't been a great deal of outward enthusiasm for the job Collins has done this year, that may not mean much; one front-office member went so far as to say he'd be "shocked" if a change was made in the manager's office.

Though no one within the team has alluded to any possible changes on the coaching staff, a couple rival executives said they wouldn't rule out some alterations there if the front office isn't completely satisfied.

• The Mets ended Washington’s 12-game Citi Field winning streak with a 4-3 victory against the Nats on Friday. Travis d'Arnaud plated three runs with a first-inning double against Gio Gonzalez. Juan Lagares broke a 3-all tie with a fifth-inning RBI double.

Jenrry Mejia allowed the potential tying run to reach second base in the ninth inning. He then intentionally walked Adam LaRoche to get to Ian Desmond, who struck out to end the game.

“You never like to walk the go-ahead run, but Adam has just killed us,” Collins said. “Desmond hits us pretty good too, but you’ve just got to pick your poison at that point.”

After recording the final out, Mejia unveiled a new postgame celebration that involved pointing in Desmond’s direction and reeling him in, mimicking a fisherman. That rubbed some of the Nats the wrong way.

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

• Newsday’s Marc Carig objected to me tweeting my disapproval about Mejia’s celebration and then not being one of the reporters to ask the closer a question in Mejia’s postgame session with reporters at his locker, which I attended. Carig tweeted: “I just think you’re a damned coward if you take a shot at a player and then don’t have the guts to face that player.”

• Double-A Binghamton won its first Eastern League championship since 1994 on Friday. The B-Mets completed a three-game sweep of Richmond with a 2-1 walk-off win on pinch hitter Jayce Boyd’s RBI double. Long Island native Steven Matz took a no-hit bid one out into the eighth inning in a no-decision. Xorge Carrillo was named postseason MVP. Matz, named the organization’s minor league pitcher of the year by team brass, will be among the Mets prospects at Citi Field on Monday to be recognized as Sterling Award winners. Read the final minor-league recap of the season here. Read more in the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin. Watch video highlights of the B-Mets' clincher from WBNG and News Channel 34.

• Triple-A manager Wally Backman is due to join the Mets on Friday in Atlanta. He will serve as an extra coach for the final nine games of the season.

• A day after getting struck with a pitch, Daniel Murphy sat out Friday’s game with continued swelling in his left wrist. Murphy may be able to return Saturday.

• Collins told reporters pregame that he was happy Chris Young has found early success with the Yankees. The manager added that he believed Citi Field’s dimensions adversely affected Young as a Met.

"You've got to hit them here," Collins said. "And sometimes there's nights when you hit them, they don't go anywhere due to the wind, due to the humidity -- whatever it is, sometimes balls just don't carry here. We see it every single day that it's a tough place to hit. It affected Jason Bay immensely. It's affected David [Wright] some. It's affected [Curtis] Granderson some. It's affected Chris Young."

Read more in the Post, Record, Newsday and at MLB.com.

• Columnist Larry Brooks in the Post suggests Lucas Duda is “not quite a finished product.”

• Joe Lemire in the Journal notes that Anthony Recker has homered in three straight appearances despite limited playing time making it challenging to stay sharp.

From the bloggers …John Delcos at NY Mets Report envisions Dillon Gee pitching elsewhere in 2015.

BIRTHDAYS: Daisuke Matsuzaka turns 34. ... Tenth-round pick Kelly Secrest out of UNC Wilmington, who made 20 relief appearances with Brooklyn after the draft, is 23.


YOU’RE UP: Do you support Terry Collins returning in 2015?