New York Mets: Milwaukee Brewers

Morning Briefing: Friday the 13th edition

June, 13, 2014
Jun 13
5:40
AM ET
NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: Two struggling teams meet this weekend at Citi Field.

San Diego arrives in Queens after having been swept in Philly. The Padres (28-38) have lost of eight of their last 10. They have scored an MLB-low 200 runs.

The Mets have lost eight of their last nine games and have dropped a season-worst eight games under .500.

Bartolo Colon (5-5, 4.31 ERA) opposes right-hander Andrew Cashner (2-5, 2.13) in the Friday the 13th series opener at 7:10 p.m.

Friday’s news reports:

Carlos Torres was charged with four runs in the 13th inning and the Mets lost Thursday’s rubber game to the Brewers, 5-1, at Citi Field. Torres was seen punching himself in his towel-draped head in the dugout after the appearance. (See video here.)


Frank Franklin II/Associated PressCarlos Torres trudges off the mound in the 13th.


The Mets (29-37) had loaded the bases with one out in the 11th (with Zack Wheeler the pinch runner at first base). That opportunity ended up going for naught. Wilmer Flores’ grounder forced out David Wright at the plate and Anthony Recker struck out looking. Recker then was ejected by plate umpire Angel Hernandez over objections to the strike zone. Terry Collins called Recker’s actions inexcusable because the only remaining position player on the bench at that point was backup catcher Taylor Teagarden.

The Mets used a season-high-matching 21 players in the four-hour, eight-minute game. It was the Mets’ eighth game of at least four hours this season, a major league high.

Jonathon Niese and Kyle Lohse had dueled to a 1-all draw through most of regulation. The Mets’ lone run came when center fielder Carlos Gomez had a two-base error on Daniel Murphy’s fourth-inning single and Bobby Abreu followed with a sacrifice fly. Niese was pulled with his pitch count at 97 in the eighth after Gomez’s two-out single. Niese was visibly upset with the hook and mouthed a profanity. Collins reasoned that ensuing batter Aramis Ramirez is solid against southpaws and already had homered against Niese in the second inning.

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

Jenrry Mejia was pulled from the game with back tightness and “a little bit of pain” after taking the mound for the 11th. Read more in the Star-Ledger and at MLB.com.

Curtis Granderson was held out of the starting lineup Thursday with a sore left calf. He did pinch hit in the 11th and was intentionally walked to load the bases for Flores. Wheeler pinch ran for Granderson. Read more in the Post, Star-Ledger, Newsday and at MLB.com.

• With Flores and not Ruben Tejada in the lineup, Murphy batted leadoff for the first time this season and 12th time in his career.

• The Mets and Houston Astros are tied for the longest active streak of consecutive losing seasons at five. Ken Davidoff in the Post asserts the Astros’ approach during their lean years -- a full teardown, as opposed to the Mets’ try-to-make-it-look-good tact -- has left Houston in a better position going forward. Writes Davidoff:

From Opening Day 2009 through the present, the Astros own a 343-535 record, a .391 winning percentage. In the same time period, the Mets are 403-473, .460. The Astros selected first overall in last week’s amateur draft, a record third straight year they had earned such a dishonor. In this span, the Mets gave their fans such treats as Dickey’s 2012 National League Cy Young Award, Jose Reyes’ 2011 NL batting title and Matt Harvey’s 2013 surge that culminated in him starting the All-Star Game at Citi Field.

Yet those peaks seemed to only increase the trust deficit between the Mets’ fans and their owners; Reyes and Dickey are gone and Harvey injured. Though the Mets continue to struggle to put together a quality team, the Astros look like a rising stock. They went 15-14 in May to post their first winning month since Luhnow took over baseball operations.

“I don’t think there are many teams in recent history that have tried to do what Houston’s done,” Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said Thursday. “In baseball, it’s usually not a recipe for success, but in this case, that’s a strategy they’ve pursued. It appears they’ve gotten through the worst of it. I applaud them for carving a strategy and sticking with it.”

• Tyler Kepner in the Times writes about the Mets’ reliance on prospects:

When you hit on almost all your top prospects, you get the San Francisco Giants, with four first-round draft picks in a seven-year span -- Madison Bumgarner, Matt Cain, Tim Lincecum and Buster Posey -- becoming major contributors to multiple championship teams. But the Giants are the outlier.

The strong chance is that some of the players anointed as Met saviors will not help the team very much. The Mets must make better decisions on the major leaguers they acquire, and hope for the best from the farm, recognizing that immediate, sustained success is the exception.

• Columnist Anthony Rieber in Newsday writes that the Mets look like trading-deadline sellers.

Matt Harvey was elected by his teammates as the Mets player representative for union matters. Read more in the Daily News.

Eric Young Jr., on the disabled list with a strained right hamstring, played his first rehab game Thursday. He went 1-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored in a seven-inning game with Class A St. Lucie. Young’s rehab assignment is due to continue with Double-A Binghamton on Friday.


Eliot J. Schechter/MLB PhotosFlorida State League All-Star Brandon Nimmo returned to St. Lucie's lineup on Thursday.


• 2011 first-round pick Brandon Nimmo, who had been sidelined since last Friday with a right wrist injury after getting hit by a pitch, returned to St. Lucie’s lineup Thursday. He manned center field in both games of a doubleheader. St. Lucie now heads into the Florida State League All-Star break. Nimmo is due to be one of the team’s seven St. Lucie representatives in Saturday’s All-Star Game in Bradenton, Fla.

• The Tom Gamboa-managed Brooklyn Cyclones open their season at 7 p.m. Friday at Staten Island. See the full roster here. Andrew Beaton in the Journal profiles the two managers: Gamboa and Baby Bombers skipper Mario Garza.

Joel Carreno limited Colorado Springs to one run on three hits and three walks in seven innings and newly demoted Scott Rice tossed 1 2/3 scoreless relief innings as Las Vegas won, 3-1. Kyle Johnson, Xorge Carrillo and Rylan Sandoval each had three-hit games as Binghamton used an eight-run seventh to beat Akron, 11-3. St. Lucie swept a doubleheader against Jupiter. Cam Maron, Jairo Perez and Cole Frenzel homered in Game 1 and Aderlin Rodriguez went 4-for-5 and drove in five runs and Eudy Pina homered twice in the nightcap. Savannah swept a doubleheader from Augusta. Jonathan Leroux had a walk-off RBI double in the opener. John Gant had a seven-inning shutout in Game 2. Read the full minor-league recap here.

• Marc Carig in Newsday warns against writing off Travis d’Arnaud too quickly. Carig pointed to Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy as an example of a catcher who took time to hit his stride in the majors.

• Mike Vorkunov in the Star-Ledger catches up with the ex-Met Gomez.

• Marty Noble at MLB.com places Murphy’s paternity leave and White House visit in a historical context.

From the bloggers … Faith and Fear thought the Mets played a late-September game in the middle of June.

BIRTHDAYS: Mets minor-league left-hander Angel Cuan turns 23.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: What can the Mets do to halt their freefall?

Wednesday's Mets-Brewers lineups

June, 11, 2014
Jun 11
4:17
PM ET
NEW YORK -- Here are the lineups for the New York Mets' Wednesday night game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Citi Field:

Mets
Ruben Tejada, ss
Daniel Murphy, 2b
David Wright, 3b
Curtis Granderson, lf
Bobby Abreu, rf
Lucas Duda, 1b
Taylor Teagarden, c
Matt den Dekker, cf
Jacob deGrom, rhp

Brewers
Scooter Gennett, 2b
Ryan Braun, rf
Jonathan Lucroy, c
Carlos Gomez, cf
Aramis Ramirez, 3b
Khris Davis, lf
Mark Reynolds, 1b
Jean Segura, ss
Wily Peralta, rhp

Morning Briefing: Can Mets win a series?

June, 11, 2014
Jun 11
10:53
AM ET
NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: Terry is staying, for now. The losing streak is over, for now.

Now, can the New York Mets win a series?

They have a chance at it Wednesday night, when they go for a second straight win over the first-place Milwaukee Brewers at Citi Field.

Wednesday's news reports:

Taylor Teagarden? Yes, Taylor Teagarden. He's 30 years old, and he's managed to stay in the major leagues for just one full season (2009), even as a backup. But he does have some power, which he showed off with a grand slam home run that helped give the Mets their 6-2 win Tuesday night.

SportsNation

Fill in the blank: "[Blank] is more to blame for the Mets' woes than Terry Collins is."

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Discuss (Total votes: 1,762)

• With the Mets ending their last road trip with six straight losses to fall a season-high seven games over .500, general manager Sandy Alderson felt the need to address manager Terry Collins' status. The verdict? Collins is staying, as Alderson told him Tuesday.

• The vote of confidence didn't impress columnist Joel Sherman, who wrote in the Post that with Collins, it's only a matter of when he gets fired, not if he gets fired. Columnist John Harper writes in the Daily News that Collins needs to hold the Mets more accountable. Columnist Bob Klapisch in the Record says everyone in the organization should be on the hot seat.

• It appears now that Matt Harvey won't pitch in 2014, after all. It's amazing how many times this "will he or won't he?" has been a story, and it only goes to show how few Mets players besides Harvey can excite the fan base (and also how much Harvey himself loves being in the spotlight, even when he's not pitching). Anyway, for now the Mets are almost ruling out a 2014 return, and Harvey seems to accept it (for now).

• While Teagarden's slam helped the Mets to a win, the question of what happens to Travis d'Arnaud still means more to the team's future. Read more on d'Arnaud in the Post.

Did you see the story about Matt den Dekker, Vic Black and the runaway horse? It's not really about the two Mets, but they were there to see it.

Zack Wheeler denied accusations from the San Francisco Giants that he intentionally threw at Hunter Pence on Sunday. Read more in Newsday.

BIRTHDAYS: Jose Reyes turns 31 ... Frank Thomas (the one who played for the '62 Mets) is 85.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU'RE UP: Do you really care if Matt Harvey makes a few starts at the end of 2014 or not?

Rapid Reaction: Mets 6, Brewers 2

June, 10, 2014
Jun 10
9:58
PM ET
NEW YORK -- After Terry Collins received a vote of confidence from Sandy Alderson, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Daniel Murphy and Taylor Teagarden gave their manager the support he really needed.

Matsuzaka limited the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers to one run in six innings and Murphy and Teagarden homered as the Mets snapped a six-game losing streak with a 6-2 win Tuesday at Citi Field.

Murphy, fresh off a trip to the White House to discuss parental rights, opened the scoring with a two-run homer in the third inning against right-hander Marco Estrada.

After Estrada issued three sixth-inning walks, Teagarden deposited an opposite-field grand slam over the right-field wall for a 6-1 lead.

Teagarden, who had 20 homers in 467 career major league at-bats with the Texas Rangers and Baltimore Orioles, was making his Mets debut after swapping spots with demoted Travis d’Arnaud.

Despite the Mets’ .159 average with the bases loaded this season entering the night, the 30-year-old Teagarden became the third Met with a grand slam this season, joining Ike Davis and Wilmer Flores. The only other Met with a slam in his first career game with the ballclub was Collin Cowgill on Opening Day 2013, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

The lone run against Matsuzaka came on an RBI double by Lyle Overbay in the fourth past first baseman Lucas Duda.

Matsuzaka was making his second start since Rafael Montero’s demotion opened a rotation slot until Dillon Gee returns from a lat-muscle strain.

In the sixth, Matsuzaka was struck on his right backside by a leadoff line drive from Carlos Gomez. Matsuzaka scrambled to retrieve the baseball and threw to first base for the out against the speedy ex-Met. A visit from assistant trainer Brian Chicklo ensued. After warm-up pitches, Matsuzaka’s outing resumed. He completed the inning and then departed with his pitch count at 100.

What’s next: Jacob deGrom, still searching for his first win, makes his sixth major league start Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. DeGrom (0-2, 3.19 ERA) opposes right-hander Wily Peralta (5-5, 3.03).

Tuesday's Mets-Brewers lineups

June, 10, 2014
Jun 10
3:37
PM ET
NEW YORK -- Here are the lineups for the Mets' 7:10 p.m. game against the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday at Citi Field.

Ruben Tejada bats leadoff for the first time since May 29, 2013. Taylor Teagarden last appeared in a major league game Aug. 30 with Baltimore.

Mets
Tejada, ss
Daniel Murphy, 2b
David Wright, 3b
Curtis Granderson, rf
Chris Young, lf
Lucas Duda, 1b
Teagarden, c
Matt den Dekker, cf
Daisuke Matsuzaka, rhp

Brewers
Scooter Gennett, 2b
Ryan Braun, rf
Jonathan Lucroy, c
Carlos Gomez, cf
Aramis Ramirez, 3b
Khris Davis, lf
Lyle Overbay, 1b
Jean Segura, ss
Marco Estrada, rhp

Morning Briefing: Back to work

June, 10, 2014
Jun 10
5:30
AM ET
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: YOU’RE UP: Should the Mets leave the manager and coaching staff intact?

Series preview: Mets vs. Brewers

June, 9, 2014
Jun 9
9:45
AM ET

Getty ImagesThe Mets are due to face Marco Estrada, Wily Peralta and Kyle Lohse during the upcoming series at Citi Field.
METS (28-35, fourth place/NL East) vs. MILWAUKEE BREWERS (38-26, first place/NL Central)

Tuesday: RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka (2-0, 3.21) vs. RHP Marco Estrada (5-2, 4.19), 7:10 p.m. ET

Wednesday: RHP Jacob deGrom (0-2, 3.19) vs. RHP Wily Peralta (5-5, 3.03), 7:10 p.m. ET

Thursday: LHP Jonathon Niese (3-3, 2.68) vs. RHP Kyle Lohse (7-2, 3.27), 7:10 p.m. ET

Brewers short hops

• Ex-Met Francisco Rodriguez has 19 saves, one shy of Sergio Romo’s MLB-leading 20 with the San Francisco Giants. K-Rod produced a four-out save Sunday as the Brewers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates, 1-0. It marked his first save exceeding one inning since June 9, 2011 with the Mets against Milwaukee.


Mike McGinnis/Getty ImagesFrancisco Rodriguez recorded his 323rd career save Sunday.


Rodriguez has 323 career saves, which ranks 15th all time. Next up: Roberto Hernandez at 326. K-Rod re-signed with Milwaukee on Feb. 7 for $3.25 million, with the potential to earn another $550,000 in performance bonuses. He did not pitch in the Cactus League until March 15 because he stepped on a cactus.

• Catcher Jonathan Lucroy is tied with Yasiel Puig for second in the National League with a .335 average, trailing only Troy Tulowitzki (.361). Lucroy has 23 doubles. He is on pace for 58, which would set a franchise record. Lyle Overbay had 53 doubles in 2004, during his first stint with the Brewers.

• Shortstop Jean Segura moved to the leadoff spot on May 22, with ex-Met Carlos Gomez switching to cleanup. Segura ranks second in the NL in runs scored since the change with 14. Teammate Khris Davis, a left fielder, has a league-leading 16.

Aramis Ramirez returned to the starting lineup as the DH Wednesday and then at third base Friday after spending three weeks on the disabled list with a strained left hamstring. Mark Reynolds played third base in Ramirez’s absence.

• After unsuccessful talks with the Mets regarding Ike Davis, the Brewers have pieced together first base this season with an ex-Yankee duo: the righty-hitting Reynolds and the lefty-hitting Overbay. They are hitting a combined .213 (66-for-310), but also have 15 homers and 45 RBIs, including Reynolds’ production at other positions. Reynolds’ 13 homers are tied for fourth in the NL.

• Right-hander Tyler Thornburg, whom the Mets reportedly sought in a potential trade for Davis during the offseason, has landed on the disabled list with right elbow soreness. Right-hander Mike Fiers was promoted from Triple-A Nashville.

Kyle Lohse had been 17-5 with a 2.80 ERA over his last 34 starts before surrendering eight runs in five innings at Pittsburgh on Friday. The ill-fated start lifted his season ERA from 2.60 to 3.27.

• Gomez is hitting .307 with 12 homers, 35 RBIs and 11 steals in 231 at-bats. The excitable Gomez served a three-game suspension in mid-May for his role in a bench-clearing brawl at Pittsburgh. He also had helped incite a brawl against the Atlanta Braves last season.

• Second baseman Rickie Weeks is batting .381 (24-for-63) since April 25.

Ryan Braun missed the final 65 games of last season after negotiating a suspension related to his Biogenesis involvement. Braun admitted via a statement last August to using a “cream and a lozenge” to rehab a 2011 injury. He has batted second in 14 of the past 15 games. He exclusively had batter third the previous three seasons. Braun is third on Milwaukee’s all-time home run list with 220, trailing Robin Yount (251) and Prince Fielder (230).

• Left-handed reliever Will Smith, who was acquired from the Kansas City Royals on Dec. 5 for outfielder Norichika Aoki, has a 0.94 ERA in 32 appearances. Lefty batters are hitting .135 (5-for-37) against him this season. Fellow lefty reliever Wei-Chung Wang is the 11th Taiwanese player in MLB history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. He debuted in the majors at age 21, becoming the youngest player ever to appear in the majors from that country.

Matt Garza signed a four-year, $50 million contract with the Brewers on Jan. 27 after splitting the 2013 season between the Chicago Cubs and Texas Rangers.

Brewers keep adding alternatives to Ike

January, 20, 2014
Jan 20
3:36
PM ET

Getty ImagesThe Brewers have added ex-Yankees Mark Reynolds and Lyle Overbay, lessening the need to acquire Ike Davis.
Days after adding Mark Reynolds, the Milwaukee Brewers now have signed Lyle Overbay to a minor-league deal.

The additions appear to signal that Milwaukee is prepared to go without acquiring Ike Davis. The Brewers once appeared the most logical landing spot for Davis.

Overbay, who turns 37 next Tuesday, hit .240 with 14 homers and 59 RBIs in 445 at-bats for the Yankees last season. He played for the Brewers in 2004 and '05.

Brewers find alternative to Ike

January, 16, 2014
Jan 16
6:53
PM ET
Mark Reynolds reportedly is headed to the Milwaukee Brewers, likely ending their pursuit of Ike Davis.

That would increase the likelihood Davis makes it to Opening Day with the Mets.

The Brewers had appeared the most viable potential trade partner for the Mets regarding Davis.

Alderson: Ike OK with limbo

January, 9, 2014
Jan 9
3:45
PM ET
Sandy Alderson spoke with Ike Davis at David Wright's wedding in late December. And the GM indicated Davis is not unnerved about all the trade chatter.

"He was in a good mood," Alderson told MLB.com. "I don't think any of this talk over the winter has bothered him. I think he's anxious to get to spring training and show what he can do. I was certainly pleased by that."

As for the dialogue with the Milwaukee Brewers about Davis, Alderson added: "We're not going to move Ike just to move Ike -- or any other player for that matter. This is a trade market, not a yard sale, and right now we're perfectly happy to go into spring training with Davis and [Lucas] Duda both on the team. Frankly, we're not that actively engaged in trade discussions involving Ike at this point. I think that underscores our willingness to go into camp with both.

"You can only ask someone to dance so many times before you get the message. We've been told by a variety of clubs that what we're asking is not unrealistic. But if they think they can get it or something else for less, that's what they're going to try to do. So be it. It's not like we're holding out for Babe Ruth."

Brewers GM on Ike: No agreement right now

January, 6, 2014
Jan 6
11:56
AM ET
Milwaukee Brewers GM Doug Melvin acknowledged he is continuing to discuss Ike Davis

lastname
Melvin
with the Mets. But Melvin bluntly stated there has not been agreement with Sandy Alderson on the price for the first baseman.

"First base, I’ve had ongoing discussions with Sandy Alderson, but we haven’t gotten to anything where we’re comfortable with the deal from our side, and he’s not been comfortable with the deal from his side," Melvin told MLB.com.

Asked if the Mets were being too demanding, Melvin added: "I don’t ever get into that. Everybody makes the deal that they feel is the best deal for them. I don’t ever consider whether asking prices are too high on [trades] or not, because you don’t know until after the deal and you’ve seen players perform. I think we’ve pretty well stood by -- the one thing we’ve done -- is we do not want to give up pitching.”

ESPNNewYork.com reported Sunday that the Mets now believe Davis at least will be in camp with the ballclub in Port St. Lucie, Fla.

Ike Watch: Brewers GM showing patience

December, 18, 2013
12/18/13
8:22
AM ET
Milwaukee Brewers GM Doug Melvin still needs a first baseman, but he maintained he will not be overly aggressive in giving away talent to acquire Ike Davis.

"It's pretty quiet," Melvin told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "We know all the names. It's a small group. Nothing changes from one day to the next. Ike Davis is the one player people talk about. Other than that, there's not much available. ...

"Teams aren't focused on moving guys right now. It's unfortunate, but that's the way things are. We all have our own searches going on to try to have a complete team. Ours is at first base. We keep plugging away at it, but we might have to mix and match with some of our own players. ...

"It's interesting how many first basemen started at other positions. We've talked about a lot of guys in the American League, but because of the DH a lot of them haven't played that much at first base. We'll keep looking, but I'm not anticipating anything right now."

Loney to Rays; Ike brewing?

December, 13, 2013
12/13/13
5:52
PM ET
Free-agent James Loney has agreed to a multiyear deal with the Tampa Bay Rays, further narrowing the potential destinations for Ike Davis in a trade.

Sending Davis to the Milwaukee Brewers would appear the most likely scenario. Sandy Alderson and Doug Melvin, his Milwaukee counterpart, continued to chat as the winter meetings concluded.

The Pittsburgh Pirates and Houston Astros also were searching for first basemen, but did not appear active in pursuing Davis this week.

It's a wrap: Mets depart winter meetings

December, 12, 2013
12/12/13
10:33
AM ET
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Mets executives departed the winter meetings midday Thursday, having enjoyed what could be labeled a productive week.

The Mets announced on Tuesday their four-year, $60 million deal with Curtis Granderson, which completes the overhaul of the outfield when coupled with Chris Young's previous signing. And they helped offset the sting of losing Matt Harvey for 2014 by agreeing to a two-year, $20 million contract with Bartolo Colon pending a physical.

A team official said the Colon pursuit increased during the winter meetings, and was not something the club had zeroed in on to accomplish when it arrived.


Adam RubinSandy Alderson dissects winter meetings.


"We have three established starters," Alderson said. "It's not quite enough. We have lots of young talent. But we don't want to rely on it entirely. And it also provides us the kind of depth that we're going to need through the course of the season. So adding experienced pitching, whether at the top end of a rotation or elsewhere, was an important factor for us."

Those manuevers lifted the payroll to roughly $87 million, when $4 million is factored in to account for players being on the DL and the Mets paying more than 25 active players at any given time.

The heavy lifting that remains centers on trading first baseman Ike Davis, signing a fifth starter, getting some veteran late-inning bullpen help and at least investigating an upgrade from Ruben Tejada at shortstop. Milwaukee Brewers GM Doug Melvin and Sandy Alderson were spotted chatting again Thursday morning, presumably about Davis, as the meetings were breaking up.

Alderson severely downplayed the chances of the Mets signing free-agent Stephen Drew. While the Mets are prepared to use Tejada, Alderson said upgrades via trade would still be investigated. The Mets also will listen on trade offers for Daniel Murphy, but it is appearing more likely he remains with the Mets.

"I think it's more likely if we come up with a 'high-end' shortstop or someone we like, it's more likely to come in a trade," Alderson said.

As for the progress on the shortstop front, Alderson added: "I wouldn't say we have traction. We have more knowledge today than we did before."

Davis was not traded during the winter meetings, but his days as a Met certainly appear numbered, with the Tampa Bay Rays and Brewers the two most likely destinations. Tampa Bay and Milwaukee both like free-agent James Loney, who is seeking a three-year deal, according to a source. Neither club is expected to bid beyond two years. And once Loney settles on a landing spot, Davis could end up with the club that does not prevail, although Texas' Mitch Moreland also is available. The Pittsburgh Pirates also are believed to be courting Loney.

An official from one team in pursuit of Davis said the Mets are not being unreasonable with trade demands. A trade could happen soon.

"The situation for players ebbs and flows," Alderson said. "In that regard, right now, it seems to be flowing. But, again, things are highly unpredictable."

If Murphy stays and the Mets do not upgrade at shortstop, one interesting lineup question will be: Do the Mets have to get Eric Young Jr. into the lineup and leadoff spot? That was a topic of conversation among club officials later in the winter meetings. There have been some rumblings Juan Lagares could end up on the bench or in Triple-A, despite his Gold Glove-caliber defense. The bottom line: The Mets have such little margin for error that it would be hard to carry an unproductive bat. And they really do not have a clear-cut alternative to Young as leadoff hitter, although they were chatting about alternatives that would allow Lagares to remain in the lineup.

As for what the lineup might look like without Lagares, it sounds like this is plausible based on Terry Collins' statements:

E. Young, lf
Murphy, 2b
David Wright, 3b
Granderson, rf
Lucas Duda, 1b
C. Young, cf
Travis d'Arnaud, c
Tejada, ss

If Murphy gets traded, Young could slide over to second base, reopening center field for Lagares. Collins said he is undecided about his Nos. 5 and 6 hitters being Duda-Young or Young-Duda.

The rotation right now: Jonathon Niese, Colon, Zack Wheeler and Dillon Gee. The Mets likely will add an external fifth-starter candidate, probably on a major-league deal with a low base salary -- think a Daisuke Matsuzaka or Aaron Harang type. If it is an internal candidate, it could be Jenrry Mejia, Jacob deGrom or Rafael Montero. Either way, that would allow Noah Syndergaard to open the season at Triple-A Las Vegas and debut in June or July, as Harvey and Wheeler did the past two seasons.

In concluding business Thursday, the Mets selected right-hander Seth Rosin in the major-league phase of the Rule 5 draft. But that was done with the intention of trading him for cash to the Dodgers. He will not be in camp with the Mets.

"Who's on a $5 bill? That would be the player to be named later," Alderson quipped.

The club lost left-handers Jim Fuller and Carlos Vazquez and right-hander Martires Arias in the minor-league phase of the draft. The Mets added Jonathan Velasquez, a Double-A right-hander from the Minnesota Twins organization, in the minor-league phase.

"We're very happy," Alderson said. "And, I think, we're positioned to do perhaps some other things later on. But we're happy with the four days. ... I think what we're going to do is go home, reassess what's available to us. And as we get into the last part of December and even into January, I'm sure we'll do some things. They may not be spectacular -- but, we hope, additive to what we've already done."

Hart chooses Seattle; Brewers 1B still open

December, 11, 2013
12/11/13
2:39
PM ET
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Corey Hart has opted for a one-year deal with the Seattle Mariners, CBSSports.com reported. That leaves the Milwaukee Brewers still searching for a first baseman, preserving that as a potential landing spot for the Mets to send Ike Davis.

Still, a source told ESPNNewYork.com Wednesday morning that he believed Logan Morrison would end up with Milwaukee, not Davis.

And a Mets official said Wednesday afternoon, before learning of Hart's decision, that he believed the Mets would leave the winter meetings with both Davis and Lucas Duda still with the ballclub.

UPDATE: Morrison instead has been traded to Seattle, the Miami Herald reported.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Daniel Murphy
BA HR RBI R
.294 7 37 56
OTHER LEADERS
HRL. Duda 14
RBIL. Duda 49
RD. Murphy 56
OPSL. Duda .832
WB. Colon 8
ERAJ. Niese 2.96
SOZ. Wheeler 105