New York Mets: Roberto Clemente Award

Morning Briefing: Happy Burkhardt Day!

September, 17, 2014
Sep 17
8:11
AM ET
NEW YORK

FIRST PITCH: It’s Kevin Burkhardt Day at Citi Field.

Burkhardt, SNY’s field reporter for the past eight seasons, will participate in his final home telecast with Wednesday’s series finale against the Miami Marlins. Burkhardt’s SNY duties will wrap up on the road next Thursday at Washington.


Adam RubinKevin Burkhardt celebrates his final home game as an SNY field reporter on Wednesday.


He is headed to Fox full time.

The Mets send Dillon Gee to the mound for Burkhardt’s home sendoff. Gee (7-7, 3.80 ERA) opposes right-hander Henderson Alvarez (10-6, 2.81) at 7:10 p.m.

Wednesday’s news reports:

Wilmer Flores had a big day at the plate. Using Kevin Plawecki’s bat, Flores homered twice and for the second time this season had six RBIs as the Mets beat the Marlins, 9-1, Tuesday. Bartolo Colon limited Miami to one run despite surrendering 12 hits in 7 2/3 innings.

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

Juan Lagares departed Tuesday’s game after four innings with what initially has been diagnosed as a hyperextended right elbow. He is due to undergo an MRI on Wednesday morning. Read more in the Star-Ledger.

• Columnist Joel Sherman in the Post asserts that the Mets should tank the rest of the season to finish with one of the worst 10 records in baseball. That would give them a protected first-round pick and make it easier to pursue a free agent who figures to get a qualifying offer, such as Melky Cabrera, Nelson Cruz, J.J. Hardy and Hanley Ramirez. The Mets currently have MLB’s 12th-worst record, which would mean forfeiting their first-round pick if they sign a premium free agent.

Of course, Sherman doesn’t expect the Mets will land any of those aforementioned free agents. He writes:

They will express concerns about Cabrera and Cruz’s Biogenesis pasts (though they were very interested in Jhonny Peralta last year) or whisper that their outfield will be too big for the defensively suspect Cruz (though it would not be too big for him to hit a bunch of homers) or they will express belief that Wilmer Flores and/or Matt Reynolds are dollar-for-dollar worth in the same win range as Hardy or Ramirez.

In other words, Mets fans should brace once more for excuses why they will not be getting players this offseason. But by losing big the rest of the way, at least one alibi would vanish from the repertoire.

• Retiring MLB commissioner Bud Selig, making the 20th stop of his farewell tour, visited Citi Field on Tuesday. Selig continued his unwavering support of Mets ownership. He suggested the Mets are in full compliance with MLB’s economic regulations and said the build-from-within approach is more sound than spending like “drunken sailors.” Selig added that he would let fired senior VP Leigh Castergine’s civil lawsuit play out in federal court and not discipline anybody within the organization in the midst of a legal proceeding.

Columnist Kevin Davidoff in the Post says Selig’s legacy partly is tied to propping up Mets ownership. Writes Davidoff:

A master salesman -- he sold used cars, after all -- Selig tried to make his case that the Mets’ unwillingness to spend more does not equate to gross incompetence. He mentioned the Cardinals as a team that doesn’t “spend money like drunken sailors.” He passionately declared, “Unless I read the standings wrong on the way over here, it looks to me like the Baltimore Orioles might win the American League East this year. Anybody here predict that on April 1? I don’t think so. I rest my case.”

Well, the Cardinals’ payroll this season is about $141 million, as per Basebal-Reference.com. And the Orioles are paying about $114 million for their soon-to-be division-winning roster. Not quite the same as $83 million.

Read more in the Journal, Daily News, Record, Star-Ledger, Newsday and SB Nation.

• Despite a Twitter hullabaloo, the Mets say no change is coming to their skyline logo. They offered no official reason why the UN Headquarters in the skyline was replaced by the Citigroup Center in the logo used on social media this week, although the internally constructed image appeared to be more than a year old. Read more in the Times (which wonders about potential hacking) and Newsday.

• Dwight Gooden predicted Jacob deGrom will become the first Met to win the NL Rookie of the Year Award since he did 30 years ago. “Striking out eight guys in a row, that really put the stamp on it for me,” Gooden told Dan Martin in the Post, referring to deGrom’s record-setting game-opening feat Monday against the Marlins. “That’s the kind of thing you need to do to get people’s attention, especially as a starting pitcher.”

Gooden told Matt Harvey last week that Harvey and deGrom have a “similar mound presence.”

Said Gooden to Martin: “They both carry themselves like veterans out there. They’re two different pitchers, but nothing rattles them.”

• The Mets nominated David Wright for the Roberto Clemente Award, which honors “the player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement."

• ESPNNewYork.com reviews which players the Mets may protect in the Rule 5 draft, which annually takes place at the winter meetings in December.

• Marc Carig in Newsday assesses Lagares’ Gold Glove chances. The award is based on manager and coach voting (75 percent) and defensive statistical metrics (25 percent). Writes Carig:

With Lagares, prestige might be the problem.

[Carlos] Gomez won the award last year and has the advantage of being an offensive force while [Andrew] McCutchen reigns as the NL's Most Valuable Player. The veteran [Denard] Span plays for a contender and [Billy] Hamilton's stolen-base prowess in the minors made him a household name before he stepped on a big-league field.

"Major League Baseball and baseball fans knew who Billy Hamilton was before he got here," said [Reds manager Bryan] Price, who naturally backed his own player for the Gold Glove award.

Pedro Martinez praised the Mets’ collection of up-and-coming pitchers, Anthony McCarron writes in the Daily News. “The Mets have the best nucleus of young pitchers,” Martinez said.

• Harvey felt no ill effects the day after his final official throwing session of 2014. Read more in the Post.

From the bloggers … Faith and Fear offers a view from an empty Promenade.

BIRTHDAYS: Former captain John Franco turns 54.

TWEET OF THE DAY: YOU’RE UP: Do you think out-of-options Wilmer Flores will be the Mets’ Opening Day shortstop next season?

Wright nominated for Clemente Award

September, 16, 2014
Sep 16
2:48
PM ET
NEW YORK -- The Mets have nominated David Wright for MLB's annual Roberto Clemente Award.

The honor goes to the "player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement."

lastname
Wright
Carlos Delgado won the award while a Met in 2006.

The Mets wrote about Wright's charitable activity:

He launched the David Wright Foundation in 2005 to provide aid and assistance toward the health, emotional development and education for children in need in New York City and his hometown of Norfolk, Virginia.

Over the past five years, the foundation has expanded its scope and raised more than $600,000 for a variety of charitable organizations, including the United States Marine Corps’ Toys For Tots, the Ronald McDonald House, the Virginia Tech Memorial Scholarship Fund, the Police Athletic League and the Patrolman's Benevolent Association -- a tribute to his police-officer father -- as well as the Make-A-Wish Foundation, for whom David hosts children at Citi Field on a regular basis.

David has been a leader in his adopted hometown of New York City ever since putting on a Mets uniform. Every season, David visits a firehouse around the anniversary of Sept. 11 to recognize our fallen heroes and offer support to the hard-working members of the FDNY. He has spread good cheer to Sept. 11 families during Tuesday’s Children visits to Citi Field.

After Hurricane Sandy devastated New York, David donated $250,000 through his foundation to the Mayor’s Fund to Advance NYC to help the city recover and rebuild. He toured Staten Island communities that were hit hard by the storm and visited students at a local elementary school along with the New York City School Chancellor.

Inspired by the men and women working to rebuild their communities, David launched The Wright Thing in 2013 to honor and recognize volunteers who made an extraordinary impact on the lives of individuals and organizations impacted by Hurricane Sandy. Each month that season, David met with individuals who dedicated time and effort to help their fellow New Yorkers in need. The honorees received an autographed miniature third base and VIP tickets behind third base. They also had the chance to install third base with the grounds crew and had their story told through a video tribute on Citi Vision.

The Wright Thing has continued this year, with Wright saluting heroes from the New York City Police Department. The initiative underscores David’s admiration of law-enforcement personnel as his father, Rhon, served in the Norfolk Police Department for 30 years before retiring as assistant police chief in January.

Schwinden back in swing Thursday

September, 13, 2011
9/13/11
5:21
PM ET
Chris Schwinden will enter the rotation for Thursday's series finale against the Washington Nationals, bumping Miguel Batista to the bullpen. Chris Capuano actually had been scheduled to face the Nats that day, but the southpaw will be given an extra day of rest and will work on Batista's originally scheduled day, Friday in Atlanta.

Schwinden was charged with five runs on eight hits and a walk in five innings in his major league debut last Thursday against Atlanta. That upped his season innings count to 153 2/3.

The Mets had appeared resolved not to go any further this year barring a need for Schwinden in long relief, since Schwinden tossed only 113 2/3 innings in 2010. But the Mets subsequently reversed course, reasoning they needed to see the rookie right-hander more to gauge his ability.

Schwinden turns 25 on Sept. 22.

Jason Isringhausen played catch Tuesday afternoon at Citi Field, a day after receiving an injection to try to alleviate right leg numbness associated with a herniated disc in his lower back. Isringhausen said he did the light throwing session on his own, not at the instruction of team medical staff or coaches. Asked if a return was imminent, Isringhausen definitively proclaimed: "Nooooo."

Jose Garcia, a 16-year-old switch-hitting catcher from Venezuela who was the top international prospect inked by the Mets during the July signing flurry, took batting practice at Citi Field on Tuesday afternoon.

"A switch-hitting catcher. Very athletic," Mets director of international operations Rafael Perez said about Garcia. "A gap-to-gap hitter. Stays within himself. A 1.85- to 1.95-(second time) to second (base). He's just a kid with high energy and somebody we like his makeup. I think we've got a good package."

Mike Pelfrey is the Mets nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award for humanitarian efforts. Carlos Delgado won the award in 2006 as a Met. Fans collectively have one vote for the award, with the voters mostly part of a decorated MLB panel that includes Vera Clemente, the widow of Roberto Clemente.

• The Mets are scheduled to visit Toronto and Tampa Bay during interleague play next season, with Boston coming to Citi Field, according to sources. The schedule has not yet been released. The Mets are expected to open the 2012 season at home.

Terry Collins said Jason Bay's absence for a recurring right shoulder issue should be limited to Tuesday's game. Bay jammed the shoulder again attempting a diving catch during the weekend series against the Chicago Cubs and played through irritation Monday.

Ike Davis plans to return home to Arizona in a couple of days, when the Mets head out for their final road trip of the season, to Atlanta and St. Louis. Davis said he will be idle for a couple of weeks before beginning a weightlifting regimen.

Lucas Duda confirmed he intends to play for Tim Teufel-managed Caracas for a month at the beginning of the winter league season in Venezuela to continue learning right field. Team officials had told Duda he did not need to play winter ball because of his heavy workload this season.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

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