New York Mets: Mike Jacobs

Morning Briefing: Five homers!

September, 6, 2014
9/06/14
6:03
AM ET
NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: On a modest three-game winning streak (and with their run differential sliced to minus-four), the Mets try to keep things rolling in steamy Cincinnati on Saturday.

Dillon Gee (6-6, 3.61 ERA) opposes right-hander Johnny Cueto (16-8, 2.26) at 4:10 p.m.

Cueto’s 16 wins are one shy of matching the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw for the major league lead.

Saturday’s news reports:

Rafael Montero has been promoted to the major league club. Montero, who allowed three runs in 4 1/3 innings in the opener of the Pacific Coast League playoffs on Wednesday, should get at least one start down the stretch.

• The man charged with making threats on Twitter against the Mets and Citi Field was handed a 90-day suspended sentence in Milford (Connecticut) Superior Court after pleading no contest to disorderly conduct. He must refrain from contact with Mets personnel, Justin Turner and Turner’s girlfriend and is barred from Citi Field, but is otherwise free to use the Internet.

• The Mets produced five home runs and routed the Reds, 14-5, Friday at Great American Ball Park. It marked the most long balls in a game by the Mets since they also went deep five times on Sept. 30, 2006 at Washington (Ramon Castro, Endy Chavez, Julio Franco, David Wright and Shawn Green). This time, Travis d'Arnaud, Wilmer Flores, Curtis Granderson, Dilson Herrera and Lucas Duda did the honors. Granderson’s shot, which came on the day he was dropped to sixth in the order, snapped an 0-for-18 drought. Wright went 4-for-5 before departing the lopsided game.

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

• Jared Diamond in the Journal suggests Granderson looks like a worse signing than Chris Young.

Granderson downplayed the drop to No. 6. “I’ve batted in every spot in the lineup over the course of my career,” he told reporters. “To get moved up, down, middle, out is nothing new to me.” Read more in the Post.

Daisuke Matsuzaka and Josh Edgin rejoined the Mets after getting cortisone shots in their pitching elbows in New York during the Marlins series. Meanwhile, Vic Black (herniated disk) pledged to be ready to come off the disabled list on Monday when he is eligible to be activated. Daniel Murphy (calf) also is making progress toward a potential return early next week. Murphy is eligible to be activated on Tuesday. Read more in the Star-Ledger.

• Noah Syndergaard was charged with six runs in four-plus innings and Las Vegas is facing elimination after a 7-5 loss at Reno. The big blow came on a go-ahead three-run homer by ex-Met Mike Jacobs against Miguel Socolovich that allowed a couple of inherited runners to score. Portland moved within a game of ousting Binghamton with a 6-3 win. Facing elimination, Savannah’s game Friday was suspended in the eighth inning with the Gnats trailing Asheville, 2-1. Savannah will have the tying run on second base and one out when play resumes. Read the full minor-league recap here.

Matt Harvey will throw off a mound every five days like he is simulating starts this month, but is poised to be shut down within weeks, Marc Carig writes in Newsday. Harvey will have a winter throwing program like any other pitcher, which should include tossing a baseball beginning in early November. He will ramp up in February alongside other pitchers in spring training and face batters then.

• John DeMarzo in the Post names Herrera the standout performer in the minors for the Mets, with Syndergaard the biggest disappointment and Matt Reynolds making the biggest leap.

From the bloggers … Faith and Fear salutes the unsung contributions of Buddy Carlyle and Dana Eveland.

BIRTHDAYS: Alex Escobar turns 36. ... Fran Healy is 68. ... Minor-leaguers Maikis De La Cruz and L.J. Mazzilli are 24.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Should the Mets have left Rafael Montero in Triple-A for the duration of the playoffs?

Minors 9.5.14: Syndergaard bounced in 5th

September, 6, 2014
9/06/14
12:32
AM ET
RENO 7, LAS VEGAS 5: Noah Syndergaard was knocked out after the first four batters of the fifth reached base in Game 3 of the Pacific Coast League opening-round series. He was charged with six runs on six hits, three walks and a wild pitch in four-plus innings and threw 84 pitches. The big blow against Las Vegas came on a three-run homer by ex-Met Mike Jacobs against Miguel Socolovich in the fifth that staked Reno to a 7-5 lead. Two runners inherited from Syndergaard scored on the play. Vegas trails the best-of-five series, 2-1. Logan Verrett starts Game 4 on Saturday. Box

PORTLAND 6, BINGHAMTON 3: The B-Mets are a game away from elimination after

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dropping Game 3 of the best-of-five series. Portland broke a 3-all tie with a three-run bottom of the seventh against Paul Sewald that included two unearned runs. Sean Coyle contributed a go-ahead single that plated Rusney Castillo from second base. Chase Huchingson took over for Sewald and collected a strikeout before Carson Blair brought home a run with an infield single. Shortstop Wilfredo Tovar compounded the issue and allowed another run to score by forcing an errant throw to first.

B-Mets starter Steven Matz allowed three runs in five innings as the Sea Dogs built a 3-0 lead. Portland starter Eduardo Rodriguez held the B-Mets hitless for 5 1/3 innings In the sixth, Xorge Carrillo finally put the B-Mets in the hit column with a one-out double. Two batters later, Brandon Nimmo plated Carrillo with a double and took third on outfielder Shannon Wilkerson's error. Nimmo scampered home four pitches later on a wild pitch to cut the deficit to one run. Binghamton caught a break to even the score in the top of the seventh. Following a two-out walk to Darrell Ceciliani, Travis Taijeron threaded a double inside the third-base bag. Keury De La Cruz overran the baseball in the left-field corner, allowing Ceciliani to score from first base.

Binghamton mustered one last threat against Aaron Kurcz in the ninth. Brian Burgamy walked with one and Jayce Boyd blooped a single inside the right-field line. With the tying run at the plate, Ceciliani and Taijeron flied out, ending Binghamton’s hopes.

The B-Mets look to stave off elimination in Game 4 on Saturday at noon. Rainy Lara opposes right-hander Mike Augliera. Box

ASHEVILLE 2, SAVANNAH 1 (suspended): Game 2 of the South Atlantic League opening-round series was suspended due to unplayable field conditions with one out in the bottom of the eighth inning, and with the Gnats trailing 2-1 and the tying run on second base. The Gnats are five outs from elimination. The game will resume Saturday at 4 p.m. in Savannah. If the Gnats rally to defeat Asheville, a winner-take-all Game 3 will follow at 6 p.m. On Friday, Gnats starter John Gant allowed one run and struck out 10 in 6 2/3 innings. The Tourists broke a 1-all tie in the top of the eighth when Akeel Morris' wild pitch allowed a runner inherited at third base from Dawrin Frias to score. Box

Compiled with team reports

Morning Briefing: Alderson speaks

September, 5, 2014
9/05/14
5:35
AM ET
NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: After a day off in Cincinnati, the Mets get back to work with the opener of a three-game series against the Reds.

Bartolo Colon (12-11, 4.01 ERA) opposes right-hander Alfredo Simon (13-9, 3.28) at 7:10 p.m. at Great American Ball Park.

Friday’s news reports:

• Sandy Alderson, attending Binghamton’s playoff series, did a Q&A with Lynn Worthy in the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin.

On whether the Mets will be in the market for a shortstop and left fielder during the offseason, Alderson said: “Right now, part of what we need to do is assess what we have. If you look at shortstop, [Wilmer] Flores has actually done a very nice job for us at shortstop. [Matt] Reynolds has played well at short, both here and at Triple-A. [Matt] den Dekker had an excellent season at Triple-A. So we've got to assess what we have before we start going out and canvasing the free-agent market. Free agents aren’t always the solution.”

Alderson reiterated that Dilson Herrera needed to be added to the 40-man roster this offseason anyway, so it made sense to promote him when the playing time became available because of Daniel Murphy's calf injury. The GM noted left-hander Dario Alvarez needed to be protected ahead of the Rule 5 draft, too.

Asked if Kevin Plawecki could be a factor on the major league roster next season, Alderson noted the catcher does not need to be added to the 40-man roster this offseason. “I would expect that we'll see them both in spring training next year and see where it takes us, but there is no question right now Travis [d’Arnaud] is the incumbent and Kevin doesn't have to be on the roster either,” Alderson told Worthy. “It's one of those administrative hurdles."

And asked if Brandon Nimmo could open next season with Binghamton, where he is finishing 2014, Alderson said: “Frankly, depending on what our needs are, he has probably done enough to warrant a Triple-A assignment coming out of spring training."

• Critic Phil Mushnick in the Post calls out retiring commissioner Bud Selig for propping up Mets ownership. Writes Mushnick:

What Selig never would have accepted from the assistant general manager of one of his auto dealerships, he allowed from the owners of the New York Mets.

Even in their post-Madoff mode, Wilpon’s Mets chose to rent Citi Field entrance space to one of America’s most dubious enterprises, Amway. In 2010, Amway paid $34 million in cash and provided $22 million in products to settle a long-running class-action lawsuit that accused the company and top-level distributors of fraud and operating a pyramid scheme.

So as the Mets continue to kick the same can down the alley, hoping to find the next Bartolo Colon, Marlon Byrd and perhaps Bernie Madoff -- whoever it takes to at least make it seem better -- Selig’s role in this recycled redundancy should not go unappreciated.

Vic Black threw off a mound Thursday for the first time since landing on the disabled list with a herniated disk in his neck. Black subsequently tweeted that he feels “funky fresh” and expects to be activated on Monday, when he is eligible to return from the DL.

• Mike Puma in the Post caught up with Bobby Parnell in Miami earlier this week. Parnell, throwing on flat ground as he rehabs from Tommy John surgery, aims to be ready to compete for his old closer’s job during spring training.

“It’s just a mental grind,” Parnell told Puma about the rehab process. “It’s tough being away from the competitive side of baseball, but I try to look at the positives -- a physical break and somewhat of a mental break. I feel like the path of a Tommy John rehab is a lot more known than a neck rehab, so I feel like it was laid out very well and we’re going in the right direction.”

Read more on Parnell in the Star-Ledger.

Matt Harvey will be shut down for the winter by the end of the month without having faced batters, Kristie Ackert writes in the Daily News. Alderson recently had quashed any notion Harvey would do anything serious this season.

• Hitting coach Lamar Johnson tells Marc Carig in Newsday that it may behoove Curtis Granderson to make more than subtle changes to his swing this offseason. Read more on Granderson in the Star-Ledger.

Juan Lagares in Newsday picks his favorite defensive plays of the season. Read more on Lagares from Matt Ehalt in the Record.

• Ex-Met Mike Jacobs belted a grand slam in a five-run first inning against Matt Bowman as Reno evened its best-of-five series with Las Vegas at a game apiece with a 6-0 win. Greg Peavey was knocked out in the third inning and Binghamton lost Game 2 of its playoff series, 7-0 against Portland. That series also is tied 1-all. Read the full minor-league recap here.

BIRTHDAYS: Ex-Met Chris Young -- the outfielder, not the pitcher -- turns 31. ... Rod Barajas is 39. ... Matt Watson turns 36.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Who should be the Mets’ closer in April 2015?

Minors 9.4.14: Ex-Met Jacobs slams 51s

September, 5, 2014
9/05/14
12:36
AM ET
RENO 6, LAS VEGAS 0: Reno posted five first-inning runs against Matt Bowman, including a grand slam by ex-Met Mike Jacobs. Bowman ultimately was charged with six runs in four innings as Reno evened the best-of-five Pacific Coast League opening-round series at a game apiece. Reno's Andrew Chafin went the distance, tossing a four-hit shutout. Giancarlo Alvarado and Ryan Reid each contributed two scoreless relief innings in the loss. Noah Syndergaard starts Game 3 for Las Vegas on Friday. Box

PORTLAND 7, BINGHAMTON 0: Starter Greg Peavey was charged with six runs (two earned) in two-plus innings as Portland evened the best-of-five series at a game apiece. He surrendered three of Portland's four homers. Portland posted five runs in the second on two long balls and two B-Mets errors. Former Mets farmhand Stefan Welch hit a solo homer to open the frame. With two outs, Michael Brenly reached on an error by shortstop Wilfredo Tovar. Shannon Wilkerson plated Brenly with a triple and scored when first baseman Brian Burgamy’s throw to third went wide of the bag. Sean Coyle capped the inning with a two-run homer for a 5-0 lead. In the third, Welch again went deep, this time ending Peavey’s night with a leadoff homer. The final run of the rout came in the fifth on Keury De La Cruz's homer against Matt Koch. Portland's Justin Haley tossed seven scoreless innings and stuck out eight. Koch tossed three innings in his Double-A debut. Jon Velasquez, Adam Kolarek and Randy Fontanez each pitched a scoreless inning to close out the game. The B-Mets and Sea Dogs play Game 3 of the Eastern Division Championship Series on Friday at Portland. Steven Matz opposes Portland left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez. Box

Compiled with team reports

Farm report: Herrera paying dividends, too

July, 9, 2014
7/09/14
9:44
AM ET
NEW YORK -- The Mets received an immediate return from the Aug. 30, 2013, trade of Marlon Byrd and John Buck to the Pirates, with Vic Black joining the major league club for the final month of last season. The other piece acquired in that trade is thriving in the minors.

After hitting .307/.355/.410 in the first half with St. Lucie, 20-year-old middle infielder Dilson Herrera ascended to Binghamton during a wave of promotions three weeks ago. The native Colombian is hitting .329 with two homers, 13 RBIs and 10 walks in 17 games since the move to Double-A.

Colombia may not produce the same volume of talent as, say, the Dominican Republic or Venezuela. Of the 224 foreign-born players on MLB rosters on Opening Day, four hailed from Herrera’s native country: then Angel and now Pirate Ernesto Frieri, the White Sox’s Jose Quintana, Marlins’ Donovan Solano and Braves’ Julio Teheran.


Courtesy of New York MetsDilson Herrera


Herrera nonetheless said he grew up playing baseball from a young age -- 3 or 4 years old -- and particularly looked up to Colombia-born Edgar Renteria, who played for 16 seasons in the majors, through 2011.

“Colombia is a big soccer country, but I grew up and never stopped playing baseball,” Herrera said through an interpreter.

As for what he particularly admired about Renteria, Herrera added: “On the field he was a really good player, always clutch, and he always came up big for his team. But what impressed me most was how good of a person he was. That’s what I liked the most about him.”

The Pirates used Herrera exclusively at third base in the Venezuelan Summer League back in 2011, after he first signed. Pittsburgh then only used him at second base for the next two and a half seasons, until last summer’s trade. Herrera continued to exclusively play second base after joining Savannah late last season. He helped the Gnats win the 2013 South Atlantic League championship while manning that position.

This season, he is receiving his first professional exposure to shortstop. With St. Lucie, he appeared in 43 games at second base and 19 games at shortstop during the first half. With Binghamton, the split has been nearly 50/50.

“I grew up playing shortstop,” Herrera said. “With the Pirates they turned me into a second baseman. And now I feel very comfortable at second base. But I can still play shortstop.”

As for the trade that brought him to the Mets, Herrera added: “I was surprised. Obviously I wasn’t expecting it. I was sad about leaving relationships and friendships with the Pirates organization, but was happy for the opportunity. I was excited about the opportunity to come to a new organization.”

Organization leaders

Average: John Mora, GCL Mets, .409; Matt Reynolds, Vegas, .358; Jairo Perez, St. Lucie, .358; T.J. Rivera, Binghamton, .346; Emmanuel Zabala, GCL Mets, .340; Luis Guillorme, Kingsport, .333; Jhoan Urena, Brooklyn, .315; Oswald Caraballo, Kingsport, .314; Jeff McNeil, St. Lucie, .313; Dilson Herrera, Binghamton, .312.

Homers: Andrew Brown, Vegas, 15; Dustin Lawley, Binghamton, 15; Brian Burgamy, Binghamton, 14; Allan Dykstra, Vegas, 12; Wilmer Flores, Vegas, 11.

RBIs: Allan Dykstra, Vegas, 56; L.J. Mazzilli, St. Lucie, 52; T.J. Rivera, Binghamton, 49; Aderlin Rodriguez, St. Lucie, 48; Matt Clark, Binghamton, 46.

Steals: Patrick Biondi, Savannah, 18; Dilson Herrera, Binghamton, 16; Jeff McNeil, St. Lucie, 15; L.J. Mazzilli, St. Lucie, 12; Stefan Sabol, Savannah, 12.

ERA: Marcos Molina, Brooklyn, 0.38; Rob Whalen, GCL Mets, 1.71; Octavio Acosta, Brooklyn, 1.96; Corey Oswalt, Brooklyn, 2.08; Kevin McGowan, St. Lucie, 2.20; Steven Matz, Binghamton, 2.25; John Gant, Savannah, 2.64; Robert Gsellman, Savannah, 2.81; Darin Gorski, Vegas, 2.91; Matt Bowman, Vegas, 3.56.

Wins: John Gant, Savannah, 9; Gabriel Ynoa, Binghamton, 8.

Saves: Chasen Bradford, Vegas, 12; Robert Coles, St. Lucie, 12; Randy Fontanez, Binghamton, 10; Akeel Morris, Savannah, 8; Vic Black, Vegas, 7.

Strikeouts: Darin Gorski, Vegas, 94; Dario Alvarez, Savannah, 86; Matt Bowman, Vegas, 82; Steven Matz, Binghamton, 82; Noah Syndergaard, Vegas, 82.

Short hops

Allan Dykstra has been selected to represent the Mets in the Triple-A All-Star Game. He will serve as the Pacific Coast League’s designated hitter in next Wednesday’s game at Durham, N.C.

Dykstra also will participate in Monday’s Home Run Derby. In fact, four of the six participants have passed through the Mets organization during their career. The others who will be competing in the derby: Mike Jacobs, Francisco Pena and Mike Hessman.

• Four Binghamton players were selected to the Eastern League All-Star Game: infielder Brian Burgamy, outfielder Kyle Johnson and right-handers Cody Satterwhite and Jon Velasquez. The 33-year-old Burgamy, 28-year-old Velasquez and 27-year-old Satterwhite all were signed by the Mets out of independent ball. Johnson arrived in the trade with the Angels for Collin Cowgill. The game will be played next Wednesday in Altoona, Pa. Kevin Plawecki and Matt Reynolds clearly merited selection, but already have been promoted to Triple-A.

Wilmer Flores was named PCL Player of the Week for the period ending Sunday. He became the first Las Vegas player to hit six homers in a five-game stretch since Melvin Nieves in 1994, when the club was affiliated with the Padres. Flores had league highs for the week with 13 hits, 12 runs scored and 16 RBIs.

• 2013 first-round pick Dominic Smith is hitting .439 (25-for-57) in 14 games since June 24.

• Baseball America ranked three Mets prospects in its top 50 in baseball: Noah Syndergaard at No. 19, Plawecki at No. 40 and Brandon Nimmo at No. 48. Syndergaard and Plawecki will represent the Mets in the Futures Game on Sunday at Target Field in Minnesota.

Jeremy Hefner is due to pitch one inning in a minor-league game Saturday. It will mark his first game action since Hefner underwent Tommy John surgery on Aug. 28. Hefner had his procedure performed nearly two months earlier than Matt Harvey had his operation (Oct. 22).

Rafael Montero has thrown live batting practice and is due to enter a game this week for the first time since suffering a left oblique strain and departing a Vegas game after five pitches on June 14.

Dario Alvarez is now a two-time South Atlantic League Pitcher of the Week. The 25-year-old Savannah southpaw has not allowed an earned run in his past 22 innings, which spans seven appearances. Alvarez is 6-0 with one save and a 0.87 ERA in 16 appearances (six starts) this season.

The Mets credit Alvarez’s success to cleaning up his delivery, which has improved his consistency and allowed him to throw more strikes. Alvarez had been released by the Phillies after spending three years in that organization, and the Mets’ Dominican-based scouts recommended scooping him up.

• 2013 fifth-round pick Jared King returned to action in the Gulf Coast League on Saturday after recovering from a fractured right fibula. King had been sidelined since last appearing for Savannah on May 11.

• Savannah’s winning streak ended at 11 on Tuesday afternoon when Dawrin Frias surrendered a tiebreaking ninth-inning homer to Augusta’s Ryan Jones. Savannah has produced four 11-game winning streaks since 1993, but none has reached a dozen.

Logan Taylor was due to join Savannah after three Gulf Coast League appearances. Taylor, an 11th-round pick in 2012 from East Oklahoma State College, underwent Tommy John surgery last July. He had a 2.67 ERA in seven starts for the Gnats in 2013.

• Princeton product Matt Bowman, whose delivery incorporates Tim Lincecum’s style, made his Triple-A debut Saturday. He allowed two runs in 3 2/3 innings in a 64-pitch no-decision.

• Right-hander Cory Mazzoni has moved to Double-A, which should be a temporary stop en route to Las Vegas. Mazzoni is working back from a strained lat muscle suffered when he started the Mets’ Grapefruit League finale this spring training. The 2011 second-round pick out of NC State has now appeared in three games -- one apiece in the Gulf Coast, Florida State and Eastern leagues -- since recovering.

Rob Whalen, who was off to a torrid start with Savannah until developing an infection on his hand that required surgery to clean out, logged an inning Saturday in the Gulf Coast League. It was his first appearance in a game since May 1 with the Gnats. Whalen had been 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA in four appearances (three starts) with Savannah before the issue arose.

Marcos Molina has tossed 19 consecutive scoreless innings for Brooklyn.

• Left-hander Kurt Horne, the Mets’ 31st-round pick out of high school in British Columbia, is due to make his professional debut Wednesday.

Minors 4.15.14: deGrom tosses 7 scoreless

April, 16, 2014
4/16/14
1:04
AM ET
LAS VEGAS 6, RENO 3: Jacob deGrom blanked Reno for seven innings, allowing three hits

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and one walk in an 88-pitch effort. Chris Young went 1-for-4 with a double and run scored in what is expected to be his final rehab game. The 51s built a 6-0 lead, beginning with a three-run third that included a run-scoring single by Eric Campbell, sac fly from Wilmer Flores and RBI double by Allan Dykstra. Flores added a solo homer in the fifth. Ryan Reid and Josh Edgin combined to surrender three ninth-inning runs. Didi Gregorius had two hits for Reno. Ex-Mets Mike Jacobs and Nick Evans started at the corner infield spots. Box

BINGHAMTON at PORTLAND (ppd.): The game will be made up as part of a May 21 doubleheader.

ST. LUCIE 11, JUPITER 6: The Mets broke a 5-all tie for good in their half of the sixth. Chipper Smith retired the first two batters, but then walked Dilson Herrera and Brandon Nimmo to bring up T.J. Rivera. Rivera drove a 3-1 pitch into center to score Herrera and make it 6-5. Aderlin Rodriguez followed with a two-run double to the top of the left-field wall. St. Lucie poured in on in the seventh on run-scoring hits by Eudy Pina and Nimmo. Pina added a two-out, run-scoring triple in the eighth to make it 11-5. Beck Wheeler threw 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief and struck out three to earn his first win. Starter Matt Koch allowed five runs in 5 2/3 innings. Rivera finished 3-for-5 with a double and homer. Rivera’s solo homer in the fourth broke a 3-all tie. Nimmo went 2-for-4 with an RBI. He has now hit safely in eight straight games and has five multi-hit games in his last six games. Herrera added a homer and Rodriguez crushed two doubles. Box

SAVANNAH 3, AUGUSTA 1
AUGUSTA 2, SAVANNAH 1 (8 innings): After rallying to win the resumption of Monday's suspended game, the Gnats fell in extra innings in the regularly scheduled contest. Savannah left-hander Dario Alverez entered the suspended game in relief of Monday’s starter, Kevin McGowan, and promptly allowed an inherited runner to score the game's

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opening run on Randy Ortiz's single. Alvarez (1-0) bounced back to strike out six batters and allow just two hits in 4 2/3 innings. The Gnats answered in the top of the fifth, breaking up the Augusta no-hit bid started the previous day by Christian Jones. Left-hander Steven Messner surrendered a game-tying solo homer to Gavin Cecchini. L.J. Mazzilli then doubled home Jeff McNeil for a 2-1 lead. Savannah tacked on another run in the seventh. Victor Cruzado scored as Patrick Biondi reached first base on a throwing error by second baseman Christian Arroyo. Augusta’s four errors proved costly, with two unearned runs ultimately deciding the game.

In Tuesday’s originally scheduled seven-inning game, Gnats starter Ricky Knapp struck out eight batters. He allowed a game-tying run in the fifth on a base-loaded groundout by Cristian Paulino. In a 1-all game in the bottom of the eighth, Knapp surrendered a double to Ty Ross. After a bunt groundout by Paulino, Knapp intentionally walked Shawn Payne. He was then lifted for reliever John Mincone. The left-hander served up a walk-off RBI single to Ryder Jones. Gnats outfielder Jared King preserved his league-high 12-game on-base streak, earning a walk during Game 1 and then going 2-for-4 in Game 2. Box 1, Box 2

Compiled with team reports

Farm report II: Leaders, player notes

June, 6, 2012
6/06/12
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PM ET
Organization leaders

Average: T.J. Rivera, Savannah, .327; Wilmer Flores, St. Lucie, .314; Matt den Dekker, Binghamton, .310; Eric Campbell, Binghamton, .304; Wilfredo Tovar, St. Lucie, .294; Jefry Marte, Binghamton, .293; Matt Tuiasosopo, Buffalo, .284; Travis Taijeron, Savannah, .284; Danny Muno, St. Luice, .283; Omar Quintanilla, Buffalo, .282.

Homers: Valentino Pascucci, Buffalo, 12; Travis Taijeron, Savannah, 11; Cory Vaughn, St. Lucie, 10; Wilmer Flores, St. Lucie, 10; Aderlin Rodriguez, Savannah, 10.

RBI: Valentino Pascucci, Buffalo, 40; Aderlin Rodriguez, Savannah, 40; Travis Taijeron, Savannah, 37; Wilmer Flores, St. Lucie, 35; Matt Tuiasosopo, Buffalo, 31.

Steals: Alonzo Harris Jr., St. Lucie, 12; Luis Nieves, Savannah, 11; Wilfredo Tovar, St. Lucie, 11; Fred Lewis, Buffalo, 10; Cesar Puello, St. Lucie, 10.

ERA: Zack Wheeler, Binghamton, 1.88; Collin McHugh, Binghamton, 2.17; Angel Cuan, St. Lucie, 2.40; Rafael Montero, Savannah, 2.43; Chris Schwinden, Buffalo, 2.59; Tyler Pill, St. Lucie, 2.68; Chase Huchingson, St. Lucie, 3.02; Cory Mazzoni, St. Lucie, 3.09; Matt Harvey, Buffalo, 3.69; Mark Cohoon, Binghamton, 3.92.

Wins: Hamilton Bennett, St. Lucie, 5; Matt Harvey, Buffalo, 5; Chase Huchingson, St. Lucie, 5; Collin McHugh, Binghamton, 5, Yohan Almonte, St. Lucie, 5.

Saves: Adrian Rosario, Binghamton, 12; Fernando Cabrera, Buffalo, 12; T.J. Chism, Savannah, 9; Adam Kolarek, St. Lucie, 8.

Strikeouts: Matt Harvey, Buffalo, 61; Zack Wheeler, Binghamton, 60; Garrett Olson, Buffalo, 57; Tyler Pill, Savannah, 56; Jack Leathersich, St. Lucie, 54.

Short hops

Zack Wheeler has won five straight starts with Double-A Binghamton. In his past two outings, the ex-Giants farmhand combined to limit New Britain and Reading to two runs and five hits while striking out 15 and walking two in 15 innings. “That’s probably the best-pitched game against us this year,” Reading manager Dusty Wathan told Mike Drago in the Reading Eagle. “Obviously he’s got an overpowering fastball, and he can command the ball to both sides of the plate. Tonight he threw the ball where he wanted to, and he did what he was supposed to do against us. You’ve gotta give him a lot of credit. … He looks like a big leaguer to me. For sure.”

• Right-hander Rob Whalen, drafted by the Mets in the 12th round Tuesday out of high school in Haines City, Fla., actually has serious Mets ties. His entire family hails from Queens and are big Mets fans. Whalen lived in Pennsylvania until moving south for high school to maximize his chance of becoming a professional ballplayer. Whalen won The Tom Seaver Most Outstanding Pitcher award as an 8-year-old at a Mets-sponsored camp at Long Neck, N.Y., and recalled playing catch with then-Mets reliever Scott Strickland during the event. (View visual proof here.)

Paul DePodesta offered high praise for Princeton right-hander Matt Bowman, the organization’s 13th-round pick, who had wowed team officials at a pre-draft Mets workout. “He has a Tim Lincecum delivery,” DePodesta said. “He’s also a position player for Princeton. He’s very athletic, a very good strike thrower. At our workout he actually was up to 95 mph, but pitching mainly 93-94 with plus life on his fastball. We like the athletic package and think he has some upside there when he concentrates on pitching full time. … He was a guy ever since he came to our workout that we’ve targeted. We were just trying to figure out the best time to call his name. He’s a guy we were pretty intent on taking somewhere.”

• Amateur scouting director Tommy Tanous watched Hawaii prep shortstop Branden Kaupe (fourth round) hit an inside-the-park homer while scouting one game. Tanous praised Kaupe’s speed and said he can play anywhere in the infield, including the left side because of a strong arm.

• The Mets have raided the University of Arkansas for four high-round selections the past two drafts. The Mets’ top two picks last year, Brandon Nimmo and Michael Fulmer, were Arkansas commitments. Tuesday the Mets drafted Razorbacks third baseman Matt Reynolds in the second round and grabbed Hogs commitment Teddy Stankiewicz, a high school right-hander from Fort Worth, with their other pick in that round. “We’re thinking about hiring their recruiting coordinator. We love their players,” DePodesta quipped, before adding: “Purely coincidence.”

• Reliever Jack Egbert officially was designated for assignment Tuesday by the Mets to clear a 40-man roster spot for Chris Young, forcing the Rutgers product to be exposed to waivers. Still, Terry Collins believes the organization has a valuable piece provided Egbert clears and is able to return to Triple-A Buffalo’s bullpen. “Two years ago, this guy, he almost made this team,” Collins said about Egbert, who hails from Rutherford, N.J. “Then he hurt his elbow. I’m very impressed with his sinker. His arm strength is continuing to get better [post 2009 Tommy John surgery]. And Wally [Backman] told me, he said, ‘Look, this guy can get groundballs.’ I know we didn’t use him very much, but there’s a good chance he’s going to be back.”

• Right-hander Brandon Moore, who returned from a 50-game suspension resulting from being flagged for a “drug of abuse,” has settled into Binghamton’s bullpen after working as a starter pre-ban. Likely rusty, Moore has walked five, hit a batter and thrown a wild pitch while being charged with four runs in two appearances spanning 1 1/3 innings. He has a sharp slider and quality sinker when on. There is no room for Moore at this point in the B-Mets’ rotation, which already has six members. Fellow right-hander Scott Moviel, who also returned from a 50-game suspension, remains in extended spring training. Catcher Dock Doyle, the third player to receive that ban late last year, has been released, a team official said. Doyle was a fifth-round pick in 2008 from Coastal Carolina.

(Read full post)

Around the minors 5.16.12

May, 17, 2012
5/17/12
12:20
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BUFFALO 14, GWINNETT 7: Matt Tuiasosopo highlighted a 17-hit attack with a first-inning inside-the-park homer as the Bisons roughed up demoted Braves starter Jair Jurrjens. Jurrjens was charged with 11 runs (10 earned) in 4 2/3 innings. Tuaisosopo became the first Bison to produce the feat since Mike Jacobs on June 9, 2010, and the first to do it in Buffalo since Karim Garcia on June 6, 2001. In that inning, Vinny Rottino had a two-out infield single. Valentino Pascucci followed with a walk, which brought Tuiasosopo to the plate. He hit a fly ball to Braves right fielder Felix Pie that drifted out of his reach. As the ball skipped away, Tuiasosopo motored around the bases and slid headfirst into home. "I think it's my first inside-the-park home run in my career," Tuiasosopo said. After Tuiasosopo's feat, the Herd piled on. On the next pitch, Brad Emaus homered the conventional way for his first long ball as a Bison. The onslaught continued in the third, with Omar Quintanilla hitting a three-run triple for an 8-1 lead. The offense benefited Bisons starter Garrett Olson, who picked up his first 2012 win. The southpaw allowed three runs while striking out six in five innings. In his previous seven starts, three losses and four no-decisions, Olson received 17 total runs of support. Rottino (2-for-4) extended his hitting streak to 19 games. Box

BINGHAMTON 1, TRENTON 0: Jefry Marte ripped a bases-loaded single to right to give Binghamton a walk-off win. It was the B-Mets’ second walk-off win of the season and first 1-0 victory since they defeated New Hampshire in the second game of a doubleheader on July 14, 2011. Collin McHugh struck out six over seven scoreless innings, retiring the final nine Thunder he faced. Matt den Dekker set the table in the ninth by doubling against reliever Preston Claiborne to extend his hitting streak to 11 games, the longest for any B-Met in 2012. Josh Rodriguez followed by bunting up the third-base line. He reached safely when Claiborne failed to handle the tough bouncer. A walk to Reese Havens loaded the bases and set the stage for Marte. McHugh walked one and allowed six hits. It was his longest scoreless start since he tossed seven shutout frames as a Brooklyn Cyclone on Aug. 8, 2009. Brett Marshall was just as good for the Thunder. The 22-year-old matched McHugh with seven scoreless frames, retiring 14 straight B-Mets at one point. Brad Holt (1-0) entered in relief for Binghamton in the eighth and worked around a two-out walk to post a scoreless frame. He worked around another two-out walk in a scoreless ninth. Zack Wheeler pitches Thursday's rubber game opposite right-hander Cory Arbiso. Box

ST. LUCIE 6, BREVARD COUNTY 3
ST. LUCIE 4, BREVARD COUNTY 0:
St. Lucie left fielder Rafael Fernandez hit two homers and drove in seven runs in a doubleheader sweep. The Mets used a three-run eighth inning to come away with a Game 1 victory. Blake Forsythe hit a go-ahead RBI triple. Fernandez then ripped a two-run homer. Chris Young pitched 5 2/3 innings and allowed three runs on seven hits with two strikeouts. He received a no-decision for his second straight Florida State League start. Adrian Rosario pitched 1 1/3 innings and picked up the win in relief. He struck out the side in the seventh. Fernandez hit a two-run double in the fourth to give the Mets a 3-1 lead. Wilmer Flores launched a solo blast in the second for his sixth homer. In Game 2, Erik Goeddel pitched six shutout innings. Fernandez had a sacrifice fly RBI in the first inning. The Mets then scored three runs in the third. Robbie Shields drilled a leadoff homer. Fernandez crushed a two-run homer to make it 4-0. Goeddel (2-1) allowed five hits and struck out two over six innings. Adam Kolarek pitched a scoreless seventh with two strikeouts. Box 1, Box 2

CHARLESTON 14, SAVANNAH 5: Starter Alex Panteliodis was charged with eight runs in 3 1/3 innings. Relief Carlos Vazquez allowed five runs in 1 2/3 innings. Aderlin Rodriguez had a two-out, three-run homer in the ninth to cap the scoring. Box

Compiled from team reports

Mets morning briefing 8.19.11

August, 19, 2011
8/19/11
7:20
AM ET
After winning a series in San Diego for the first time since 2002, then having a team off-day Thursday, the Mets open a weekend series against the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers at Citi Field. It's a challenging stretch for the Mets, who then play a three-game series at NL East-leading Philadelphia before returning home to face the wild-card-leading Atlanta Braves.

Read the Mets-Brewers series preview here.

Friday's news reports:

• With Francisco Rodriguez coming to Citi Field with the Milwaukee Brewers, Newsday's David Lennon looks at the closing situation for 2012 with the Mets. He writes Jason Isringhausen is not a candidate. The Mets are in somewhat of a bind because Bobby Parnell or Pedro Beato may not be ready for that responsibility and yet Sandy Alderson likely is not going to want to allocate enormous bucks via free agency to fill that void.

"We'll see where we are at the end of the season," Alderson told Lennon. "We do have an internal candidate or two, but I'd say that the options are limited. On the other hand, if you look at the closer market over the last couple of years, it hasn't been a place where free agents are getting major contracts. There could be a lot of guys out there that are capable potentially and we'll look to see where the market is. Our bullpen is going to be an important focus for us next season. It needs to be improved, and now without K-Rod, it needs to have someone at the back end of it."

• The attorneys for Fred Wilpon and family head to federal court in Manhattan Friday afternoon hoping to get tossed all or part of a $1 billion lawsuit brought by the trustee trying to recover funds for victims of Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme. Experts believe the Wilpons ultimately will be on the hook for about $300 million, especially in light of an appeals court ruling Tuesday.

Jose Reyes is due to test his strained left hamstring by running at Citi Field before the series opener.

• Record columnist Bob Klapisch links Reyes' future to the ongoing $1 billion lawsuit brought by trustee Irving Picard against the Wilpons. Writes Klapisch:

It goes beyond not knowing what the market will be this winter; it’s wondering who’ll own the Mets next season and if they’ll be willing to pay $20 million a year for a dynamic, but oft-injured shortstop. Reyes can’t realistically expect a seven-year contract -- not now, not after breaking down with the same injury to the same hamstring. “What’s he going to look like at 34, 35?” asked one executive, who believes five years is the greatest commitment Reyes will command. That’s good news for the Mets: they need the pool of bidders to be tightly bunched, indistinguishable to Reyes except for his long-standing relationship in New York. But the Mets also need to convince Reyes they’re headed in the right direction, that this month’s collapse is an anomaly, not a symptom of a losing culture that cannot be cured.

• Commissioner Bud Selig, speaking at the quarterly owners meetings, expressed faith Wilpon and family would weather their financial storm. "The Mets situation is moving along very well," Selig said in Cooperstown, according to Ken Davidoff in Newsday. "Fred and I have had a lot of conversations here, and this was the first time in a long time we had no conversations about the Mets in any way, which is a very good sign."

• Former Met Mike Jacobs, playing for Triple-A Colorado Springs in the Rockies organization, became the first North American professional athlete to be suspended for testing positive for human growth hormone. There is no current testing of mjaor leaguers or other 40-man roster players for HGH, but Jacobs was a minor leaguer. Writes ESPN's Jayson Stark:

Other professional athletes -- including then-Atlanta Braves prospect Jordan Schaefer, in 2008 -- have been suspended because of evidence that they used, possessed or obtained HGH. But this is the first positive test since blood testing of minor leaguers began in July 2010. Testing for HGH is not part of the current major league drug agreement, but sources say it's an issue currently under discussion at the bargaining table during baseball's ongoing labor talks.

Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger quotes Terry Collins saying the Mets take infield practice more than any other team before games, yet it does not seem to translate into fielding crispness once play actually begins. Writes McCullough:

The defense has cost the team 38 runs, according to data accumulated by Baseball Info Solutions (BIS), a video scouting company. The company tracks every play each day, and compiles the data to show the number of runs saved or lost due to fielding. The Mets rank 14th among 16 National League teams. The team also ranks 29th among all major-league clubs in Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR), an occasionally controversial metric that also utilizes BIS to determine the number of runs saved or lost against average. A word of caution here: In a one-year sample, the information is prone to major fluctuation. The Mets possess a minus-40.9 UZR this year. As a group in 2010, they finished at 6.2.

Steve Popper of the Record wonders about the future of Angel Pagan with the Mets. Pagan is making $3.5 million this year, and is in for a raise because he is arbitration-eligible. "What will happen next year, it’ll happen," Pagan told Popper. "You never know what can happen. You can get traded, stay here. I just want to finish strong for the team and see what will happen next year. Obviously I haven’t had the season I planned on. It’s been a tough season -- not just for me, but for the whole team. But together, as a team, we’ve been able to go through ups and downs, being a .500 team sometimes, being a good-looking team. That’s what we’re looking for -- to finish strong and see what happens."

R.A. Dickey tells Mike Puma in the Post that K-Rod became a different person as the result of anger-management training. "He seemed much different to me," Dickey said. "He seemed a lot more approachable and congenial. He smiled more and laughed more. There was a lot about him that was different for the better. I know he did a lot of work therapy-wise. What he presented the team with was a different kind of guy."

BIRTHDAYS: Pitcher-turned-broadcaster Ron Darling turns 51. ... Left-hander Chris Capuano turns 33. ... Corner infielder/pinch-hitter Matt Franco, a member of the Mets' last pennant winner in 2000, turns 42.

Ex-Met Jacobs suspended

August, 18, 2011
8/18/11
9:58
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Former Mets first baseman Mike Jacobs has been suspended 50 games for testing positive for human growth hormone, Major League Baseball announced.

Jacobs, 30, was hitting .298 with 23 homers and 97 RBIs in 117 games for Triple-A Colorado Springs.

ESPN colleagues note:

Jacobs is the first North American professional athlete to test positive for HGH, according to the commissioner's office. The only other professional athlete to test positive for HGH was English rugby player Terry Newton. There have been previous suspensions of players for being caught purchasing, or possessing, HGH. But this is the first for a positive blood test. The minor leagues began administering this blood test in July of 2010. There is no HGH testing in the major leaguers, although it's being discussed at the bargaining table during the current labor talks.

Read more on testing here.

Big deal: Mets counter Oswalt trade

July, 30, 2010
7/30/10
2:49
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The Mets answered the Phillies' trade for Roy Oswalt on Friday, shipping Triple-A first baseman Mike Jacobs to the Toronto Blue Jays for a player to be named -- presumably not reliever Scott Downs (right). The reverberations were felt throughout the organization, with Nick Evans promoted from Double-A Binghamton to Buffalo to fill the first-base void.

Jacobs began the season platooning at first base for the Mets with Fernando Tatis. He hit .208 with a homer and two RBIs in 24 at-bats, prompting the Mets to send him to Buffalo in mid-April and launching the Ike Davis era.

Jacobs hit .260 with 15 homers and 57 RBIs with the Bisons. Evans, who was promoted to Triple-A, hit .294 with 17 homers and 55 RBIs in 88 games with the B-Mets.

Jake headed to Buffalo

April, 22, 2010
4/22/10
7:46
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Mike Jacobs has agreed to report to Triple-A Buffalo. He's scheduled to join the Bisons on Sunday in Pawtucket.

Jacobs hit .208 with one homer and two RBIs in 24 at-bats with the Mets. He was designated for assignment on Sunday.

Jake clears waivers

April, 21, 2010
4/21/10
1:47
PM ET
Mike Jacobs has cleared waivers, ESPNNewYork.com has learned.

Jacobs hit .208 with one homer and two RBIs in 24 at-bats before being designated for assignment Sunday.

Jacobs has indicated he would be willing to go to Triple-A Buffalo if playing time exists.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Daniel Murphy
BA HR RBI R
.289 9 57 79
OTHER LEADERS
HRL. Duda 30
RBIL. Duda 92
RD. Murphy 79
OPSL. Duda .830
WB. Colon 15
ERAJ. Niese 3.40
SOZ. Wheeler 187