MetsBlog Q&ACast with Bob Klapisch, presented by Citi

In this week’s MetsBlog Q&ACast, presented by Citi, Matthew Cerrone talks with Bergen Record reporter Bob Klapisch about the state of the Mets, the difference between July and August, and what to do with the bullpen down the stretch…



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Wright feels good, looking forward to Citi Field return

Friday night against the Red Sox, David Wright will play his first game at Citi Field since April 14.

“I’ll kind of go through everything again where you try to keep yourself, the adrenaline at a calm level,” Wright said Thursday, thinking ahead of tonight. “You don’t want it to sky rocket.”

The last time Wright played at Citi Field, his team was 5-3 and trailed the Braves by a game in the NL East. Tonight, he’ll take the field in first place, up 6 1/2 games, in what is the most meaningful game this late in a season since 2008.

“We know how hungry these fans are to win and that’s what you want to be a part of,” Wright added. “For me, personally, it’s been a rough year and I think fans have definitely helped me out whether it’s just passing by and wishing me luck. Now returning to the field you see how hungry and excited these fans are for what this team is doing.”

Terry Collins said Wednesday that Wright would start tonight, though he could get rest again on either Saturday or Sunday.

“Physically, I feel good,” Wright said Thursday when asked about his health. “I feel like I’m slowly getting back into the swing of things. I feel like I’m having some good at-bats, some productive at-bats, and hopefully that continues.”


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Red Sox were eyeing Harvey in 2006, now they’ll face him tonight

The Mets will host the Red Sox Friday night for the first time since 2001. The two teams met at Fenway Park in 2006 and 2009.

Matt Harvey will start for the Mets against Red Sox LHP Henry Owens.

According to the Boston Globe, Harvey was on Boston’s list of potential top picks in 2006, when he wore a Red Sox hat and uniform during an East Coast Showcase (Aug. 28. 2015). However, an uneven senior year and questions about his signing bonus took him out of consideration for several teams, including the Red Sox. He was eventually drafted by the Angels in the third round of the 2007 draft, but he turned them down when offered only $1 million. He wanted $2 million, he told ESPN this past spring. Instead, Harvey attended the University of North Carolina and was later selected in the first round by the Mets, who signed him for $2.5 million.

On Friday, Harvey will be making his first start since August 16, after having his last start skipped to help conserve his innings.

In that time, Harvey had two 50-pitch bullpen sessions and one softer session, pitching coach Dan Warthen said (Aug. 27, 2015).

“At this particular time, I think the rest was good for him,” manager Terry Collins said before Thursday’s game. “I thought Matt said all the right things the other day when we talked about it, but he’s getting tired. Bobby Parnell said, ‘Hey my arm is getting a little dead.’ You can see some things that Matt was getting a little tired too, so I think the break is going to help him. I think the two bullpen sessions are going to help him. I expect him to pitch very, very well.”

Harvey told reporters Thursday that he’s feeling good, and that the rest was a smart decision, especially if it keeps him on the mound during the season’s stretch run and in to October.

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Mets not likely to add reliever, because they may already have them in house

The Mets are unlikely to trade for another relief pitcher, a team source told MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo (Aug. 27. 2015).

Mike Puma of the New York Post filed a similar reporter earlier in the week.

Instead, according to multiple reports, the Mets are more likely to call upon minor league options such as Dario Alvarez, Erik Goeddel, Dillon Gee, and Vic Black.


CerroneCircleAvatarMatthew Cerrone: In some ways, the Mets have two situations to set up for: 1) They need a bullpen to support a six-man rotation through the end of the regular season, but 2) while doing that, they need to watch and consider who can/should be moved from the rotation to a possible postseason bullpen…

For instance, from what I can gather, Bartolo Colon, Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz are the most likely candidates to get bumped to the bullpen, which would be amazing. I mean, think about Syndergaard coming in to pitch the seventh inning? Or being able to use Matz to face left-handed hitters. Of course, they’re awesome as starting pitchers, too.

Jon Niese is not considered to be a reliever by this front office, that much is clear, so get that out of your head right now. But, what about Colon? How does he factor in? And, if Syndergaard and/or Matz are relief options, is it smart to transition them IN the playoffs? Or should that be started sooner rather than later?


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Wins, wins and more wins

Daniel Murphy‘s go-ahead, two-run double to left field off Hector Neris sparked the his team’s four-run, 13th-inning rally, as the Mets extended their winning streak to seven games to beat the Phillies, 9-5, at Citizen’s Bank Park on Thursday.

“Dan Murphy can stinkin’ hit, flat hit,” manager Terry Collins said of Murphy, who went 3-for-6 and is hitting .356 since Aug. 2. “And when he’s swinging it good like we are right now, he’s dangerous and we’re dangerous.”

David Wright grounded back to the mound, which Neris bobbled and threw away, allowing Murphy to score and Wright to reach second. Wright scored on Michael Conforto’s clean single to right three batters later.

USATSI_8767862_110579513_lowres“We give ourselves a chance, no doubt about that,” Murphy said. “Hopefully, we don’t get in the habit of getting down five runs.”

The Mets, who two months ago scored nine runs total during a seven-game losing skid, have scored 73 runs during their seven-game win streak.

Their 210 runs scored since the All-Star break are 23 more than any other National League team.

“We put some good at-bats together tonight,” Collins said. “The home runs helped a lot.”

The Mets, once 10-26 on the road, have won 19 of their last 28 games away from Citi Field, including the four-game sweep at Philadelphia. They won eight of nine games on this past road trip, after being swept at home by the Pirates.

“It’s a real good trip,” Murphy said.


CerroneCircleAvatarMatthew Cerrone: Murphy is clearly loving this… every, damn, second of it. He obviously dislikes the Phillies, that’s not up for debate. He debuted with the Mets in 2008, so the first four years of his career were dominated by Philadelphia. That said, it’s totally understandable that he’d be enjoying this season, and these four games, and going 12-1 against the Phillies, in a way that maybe other players on the team do not understand. I mean, look at the intensity on his face in that photo? It’s awesome! The man loves the Mets. He wears blue, skyline socks for pete’s sake. I don’t want to think about his pending free agency, because I don’t like the idea of losing a guy with this level passion for the organization. I know it’s a business, but I hope the emotions in that photo are considered by the Mets during contract talks…


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Nationals, 6.5 games behind Mets, lose Span to DL for 3rd time

Nationals OF Denard Span is heading to the disabled list for the third time this season, manager Matt Williams said after Thursday’s game (Aug. 28, 2015).

According to Williams, Span’s current left hip inflammation is likely connected to the same back and core injuries that forced him to miss significant time earlier this season.

Span had been hitting .301 with five home runs and 11 stolen bases despite the injuries. He is a free agent at the end of this season.

The Nationals are 36-25 in games started by Span this season, 28-37 without him.

“I don’t know if I’ve ever seen anything like it,” Williams said, speaking about his team’s injuries this season. “But, it is what it is. There’s not much you can do about it.”

The Nationals, who held a three-game lead in the NL East on July 31, have lost 16 of their last 26 games, while the Mets have won seven in a row and 19 of 25 to move 6 1/2 games up in the division.


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Aug 22, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Carlos Torres (72) delivers a pitch in the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. The Mets defeated the Rockies 14-9. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Torres is a hitter, pitcher, base runner and goalie

Mets RH reliever Carlos Torres pitched, ran, kicked and hit to help the Mets win, 9-5, 13 innings over the Phillies on Thursday.

Torres entered the game in the 10th inning and pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings.

His first batter, Jeff Francoeur, lined a ball up the middle, which Torres kicked on his follow through to 1B Daniel Murphy.

Murphy made a sliding stop and tossed the ball to Torres, who sprinted to the bag and caught it mid-stride to retire Francoeur for the 1-3-1 putout and end the 10th >> Watch Here!!

“You’ll see it tonight if you turn your TVs on,” manager Terry Collins said. “It will be shown many, many times.”

Torres later retired Andres Blanco with a runner on third to end the 12th inning.

In the top of the 13th inning, he was forced to h it due to a short bullpen, but he beat out an infield single to short stop and then advanced to second on Curtis Granderson’s bloop single to left field. He later hustled around the bases to score on Murphy’s two-run double.

“He’s a super athlete,” David Wright said about Torres’s night on the mound, plate and base paths.


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