Sep 29, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets third baseman David Wright (5) waves to the crowd after a game against the Miami Marlins at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 29, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets third baseman David Wright (5) waves to the crowd after a game against the Miami Marlins at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

John Harper, SNY.tv | Twitter |

This decade won't be remembered fondly by Mets' faithful, even if it did include the fifth World Series appearance in franchise history. But it did have its moments.

Here are my Top 10 best/most memorable moments of the 2010s, along with five of the worst. 

The 10 To Remember: 

1) Game 5, 2015 NLDS vs. Dodgers 

Even though the Mets went on to sweep the Cubs in the NLCS, the 3-2 win to put away the Dodgers in Los Angeles always felt like the high point of that exhilarating post-season. 

The game dripped with suspense from start to finish, as Jacob deGrom threw a gutsy six innings without much of a fastball that night, Daniel Murphy broke a 2-2 tie with a sixth-inning home run off Zack Greinke, Noah Syndergaard pitched the seventh out of the bullpen, and Jeurys Familia closed it out with two perfect innings. 

Afterward I congratulated Terry Collins, who spent many years as a minor-league manager in the Dodgers' organization, and he was so jazzed that he nearly yanked my arm out of its socket while shaking my hand. 

2) Johan Santana No-Hitter

Yes, maybe it will always be tainted by umpire Adrian Johnson's missed call on Carlos Beltran's line drive that kicked up chalk just beyond third base. But I'm still ranking the moment, which occurred June 1, 2012, this high because it seemed to mean so much to so many Mets' fans who'd lived through countless near-misses by Tom Seaver, Dwight Gooden and others over 50 years while waiting for the franchise's first no-hitter. 

Santana was worthy of the honor, obviously, as a two-time Cy Young Award winner for the Twins who almost surely would have been a Hall of Famer if injuries hadn't cut short his career at age 33 after that 2012 season. 

Collins feared that allowing him to throw 134 pitches that night could have ramifications, but Santana pitched effectively until having his foot stepped on while covering first base a month later, which may have caused him to compensate with his delivery and led to more arm problems.

3) DeGrom Wins Second Straight Cy Young Award

In 2019 Jacob deGrom became the first Met and only the 11th pitcher in history to win back-to-back Cy Young awards. To put it in greater perspective, he is only the sixth pitcher ever to post consecutive seasons with at least 250 strikeouts and an ERA below 2.50, joining Hall of Famers Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson, and Jim Bunning.

Which makes for a couple of intriguing questions: Can deGrom, who turns 32 next June, put together enough elite seasons to be Hall-worthy? And can the Mets take advantage of his brilliance by making a post-season run while he's still in peak form? 

4) Alonso Breaks Rookie Home Run Record

In truth, it was the entirety of Pete Alonso's 2019 season that made him such a phenomenon, as he wowed New York as much with his likeable, fun-loving personality as his power-hitting exploits and stamped himself as a cornerstone player for years to come. 

Winning the Home Run Derby gave him national exposure but hitting that 53rd home run on Sept. 28 was a memorable and perhaps lasting milestone, as he eclipsed Aaron Judge's rookie record of 52 while also giving him a final total that led the majors. 

5) Wright's Farewell Appearance

This moment was tinged with sadness, as David Wright was forced out of baseball prematurely due to injuries, primarily spinal stenosis. But his final game, on Sept. 29, 2018, was also a celebration of a player who was respected as much for his character as a career that was on a Hall of Fame track before injuries intervened.

There was no Hollywood finish that night, as Wright walked and popped out before being pulled for a standing ovation, but it hardly mattered. His tearful emotions, and those of most everyone connected with the Mets, made for a memorable send-off for the Mets' captain.

6) Dickey Wins NL Cy Young Award

R.A. Dickey's 2012 season was a magical tale that made for a best-selling book and, who knows, maybe a movie someday. It still seems hard to believe that at age 37, after becoming a knuckleballer as a way of extending a career as a journeyman starter, Dickey went 20-6 with a 2.73 ERA, earning the Cy Young award in landslide vote over Clayton Kershaw

Omar Minaya gets the credit for signing him as a free agent, going into the 2010 season, and Sandy Alderson does likewise for selling high on Dickey after that Cy Young season, trading him for Noah Syndergaard and Travis d'Arnaud

7) Harvey's All-Star Start

With the Mets in the midst of six straight losing seasons, Matt Harvey's start in the 2013 All-Star Game, held at Citi Field that year, made for quite a spectacle. Harvey was arguably the best pitcher in baseball at the time, 7-2 with a 2.35 ERA, his every start a buzz-worthy event. 

He didn't disappoint in his All-Star outing, pitching out of a jam in the first inning that included striking out Miguel Cabrera with his then-practically unhittable slider, and going on to get three K's in two scoreless innings. All of which seemed to be more evidence that Harvey was on his way to a spectacular career. 

8) The Cespedes Trade 

The Mets were going nowhere at the time, you'll recall, at 52-50 on the final day before the trading deadline, July 31, 2015. An earlier trade of Wilmer Flores and Zack Wheeler for Carlos Gomez had fallen apart, fortunately for Sandy Alderson as it turned out, and as the 4 p.m. deadline approached the Mets' GM was unsuccessful trying to make deals for Jay Bruce and then Justin Upton

Desperate to jump-start a lifeless offense, Alderson agreed to trade top pitching prospect Mike Fulmer to the Tigers for Cespedes, and the Cuban slugger carried the Mets with 17 home runs and a .942 OPS to the NL East title. 

9) Big Sexy's Home Run 

What would a list of memorable moments be without Bartolo Colon's home run, so stunning that Gary Cohen at the time called it one of the greatest moments in baseball history. 

By then Colon was already beloved in Queens, in part because of his Joe Sixpack-like physique that belied the athleticism and durability that allowed him to pitch in the big leagues until age 45.

In San Diego on May 7, 2016, however, Colon astonished everyone by turning on a James Shields fastball and, at age 42, hitting the first home run of his career, adding to the legend of the guy they called Big Sexy. 

10) Flores Cries 

The legend of Wilmer Flores as an unlikely fan favorite was born out of the tears he cried rather famously during a game with the Padres on July 29, 2015, after hearing from fans near the dugout of reports that he was being traded to the Brewers. 

Such rare show of emotion, which became a storyline on SNY's game telecast that night, captured the hearts of Mets' fans who chanted his name at Citi Field in the weeks that followed. All the more so when the deal fell through and, two nights later, hours after the team had traded for Cespedes, Flores hit a 12th-inning walk-off home run to beat the Nationals. 

And Five Moments To Forget:

1) Familia's Quick Pitch

Some in the organization will always be convinced the Mets would have won the 2015 World Series if Jeurys Familia hadn't tried to trick Alex Gordon with the quick pitch that landed beyond the center field fence for a game-tying home run in Game 1. 

2) Murphy Signs With Nationals

The Mets refused to believe that Daniel Murphy's Babe Ruth-like October in 2015 was anything more than a hot streak, and they paid for it dearly as he tormented them as a member of their rivals for three years. 

3) Duda's Wild Throw

Maybe the Mets weren't going to win World Series Games 6 and 7 in Kansas City, but they would have at least had the chance to find out if Lucas Duda hadn't panicked at the sight of Eric Hosmer making his mad dash for home plate and thrown wildly to allow the tying run to score in the ninth inning of Game 5. 

4) Harvey's Elbow Injury

In retrospect it seems that Matt Harvey's later injury, the thoracic outlet syndrome, killed his career. But the news of his need for Tommy John surgery in 2013, when he was young and seemingly invincible, was the first sign that he might not be the Mets' savior, after all. 

5) Bay Signs For $64 Million

Technically the deal was agreed to in late December 2009, but Jason Bay was introduced at a press conference in early January 2010, in what proved to be something of an appropriate start to a decade of frustration, as he turned out to be a colossal bust. 


RELATED: Latest on Mets' pursuit of Starling Marte >> Read More

RELATED: John Harper's Mets All-Decade Team >> Read More

RELATED: 5 Mets prospects who can make an impact in 2020 >> Read More

Tags: Bartolo Colon, Carlos Beltran, David Wright, Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, Pete Alonso, Wilmer Flores, Yoenis Cespedes, John Harper
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Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen stood alongside new manager Luis Rojas after introducing him to the media on Friday, going into detail about why he was chosen for the job to replace Carlos Beltran.

"His communication not only to the players, but you'll learn his communication with you will be genuine," Van Wagenen said. "And certainly from a management standpoint, the ability to know that when we speak to Luis, it's gonna be the truth."

After Rojas' press conference was over, Van Wagenen went 1-on-1 with SNY's Steve Gelbs and provided further explanation on the choice of Rojas.

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Starling Marte (Charles LeClaire)
Starling Marte (Charles LeClaire)

In recent days, the Mets have once again been linked in trade talks with the Pittsburgh Pirates centered around outfielder Starling Marte.

Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen spent most of his availability on Friday answering question about the team's new manager Luis Rojas, but he was also asked about the team still looking to trade for an outfielder.

"At this point we feel very confident in the group we have," said Van Wagenen. "We're excited about the guys that we have invited to camp. We're excited about the returning players that we'll have back on the roster, and we think we've added some key pieces from the outside that will help us this year. 

"We don't want to disrupt what we have. We do have the chemistry I spoke of. We have a culture where people buy into one another and they believe they can pick each other up. I don't see a deal that's going to disrupt that environment, and if there's an opportunity to continually improve our roster we'll explore it, but our aggressiveness is focused on getting ready for spring training with the players that we have."

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The Mets introduced Luis Rojas on Friday as the 23rd manager in franchise history, with Rojas replacing Carlos Beltran less than three months after Beltran took over.

Amidst the strangeness of a second new manager press conference in the same offseason, Rojas spoke at the podium -- answering questions in both English and Spanish -- before taking part in multiple scrums with local reporters.

Throughout it all, Rojas was both direct and reflective, mentioning on numerous occasions how getting this job was his "dream."

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Pirates OF Starling Marte
Pirates OF Starling Marte

The Mets have interest in trading for Pirates CF Starling Marte. Here's the latest...


Jan. 24, 2:59 PM:

The Mets and Pirates remain "engaged" in trade talks for Starling Marte, but there is still "plenty of work" to be done, Jon Heyman reported, adding that the Padres, Diamondbacks, and Rangers could also be in play.

Tags: Brandon Nimmo, Carlos Beltran, Michael Conforto, Danny Abriano
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Mookie Betts
Mookie Betts

With the Red Sox in a state of flux this offseason, there's long been a thought that the team might look to deal superstar right fielder Mookie Betts.

The Mets, meanwhile, would seem like a strong fit for Betts, as the team looks to solidify their outfield and add another big bat to go along with Pete Alonso in the lineup.

Could Betts end up in the National League this season after all?

Tags: Pete Alonso
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Mets quality control coach Luis Rojas (Jasen Vinlove)
Mets quality control coach Luis Rojas (Jasen Vinlove)

The Mets announced Luis Rojas as the team's 23rd manager in Thursday evening.

The team had been working to finalize a multi-year deal with Rojas, and the deal is now official.

The 38-year-old Rojas has been a member of the Mets organization since 2007, managing on different minor-league levels before joining the big-league staff as quality control coach in 2019.

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Luis Rojas (Treated Image by SNY)
Luis Rojas (Treated Image by SNY)

Luis Rojas will meet the media on Friday at Citi Field when he is officially introduced as the new Mets manager.

When news came out Wednesday that the Mets had chosen Rojas to replace Carlos Beltran, the reaction was mostly positive -- Rojas has been with the Mets since 2007, has terrific credentials, and is viewed by many as a rising star.

But one of the main concerns some had revolved around how Rojas would handle the media on a daily basis. He'll get his first test on Friday. Here are five (of many) questions Rojas should be asked...

Do you still need to earn the respect of the players?

Despite having already managed a vast majority of the players on the roster while in the minors -- including Pete Alonso, Jeff McNeil, Dominic Smith, and many others -- there is a thought that Rojas may need to work to earn additional respect now that he's in the big league manager's chair.

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Mets manager Carlos Beltran and Brodie Van Wagenen (SNY)
Mets manager Carlos Beltran and Brodie Van Wagenen (SNY)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Here's a weird question. Was Carlos Beltran ever the Mets manager?

What we mean is, when the franchise lists its all-time skippers, will Beltran be included despite the fact that the team hired and parted ways with him before he ever saw game action?

The question has implications both trivial and meaningful for Luis Rojas. Is he about to become the 22nd or 23rd manager in franchise history?

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Amed Rosario
Amed Rosario

During the past two weeks, I reached out to current and former players, coaches, scouts and league executives to learn who on the Mets is most likely to take a big step forward in 2020 compared to 2019.

The following three players were mentioned most...

1) Amed Rosario

Rosario hit .287 with a .323 OBP, 15 home runs, 30 doubles and 19 stolen bases, while producing 2.7 WAR in 2019, according to FanGraphs.

As soon as he started to get himself stable and performing well in the field, he also began swinging at fewer pitches out of the strike zone, while swinging at more pitches in it. Not surprisingly, he also started making more and better contact overall, while also reducing how often he struck out.

Tags: Amed Rosario, Brandon Nimmo, Edwin Diaz, JD Davis, Jeff McNeil, Noah Syndergaard, Rene Rivera, Matthew Cerrone
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Sep 24, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets right fielder Michael Conforto (30) rounds third base in front of Miami Marlins third baseman Starlin Castro (13) after hitting a two run home run against the Miami Marlins during the seventh inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 24, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets right fielder Michael Conforto (30) rounds third base in front of Miami Marlins third baseman Starlin Castro (13) after hitting a two run home run against the Miami Marlins during the seventh inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Mets outfielder Michael Conforto, who has been one of the most valuable outfielders in baseball since making his Major League debut in 2015, has been ranked among the Top 10 right fielders in baseball by MLB Network's The Shredder

The 26-year-old Conforto, who hit .257/.363/.494 with 33 homers, 29 doubles, and 92 RBI in 151 games in 2019, came in at No. 9 on the list.

Conforto was one spot behind Joey Gallo and one spot ahead of Nicholas Castellanos.

Tags: Brandon Nimmo, JD Davis, Michael Conforto, Yoenis Cespedes, Danny Abriano
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Luis Rojas (Lizzy Barrett/Getty Images)
Luis Rojas (Lizzy Barrett/Getty Images)

The Mets announced Wednesday that they're finalizing a deal that will have Luis Rojas will take over as manager for the 2020 season.

The praise amongst Mets players such as Marcus Stroman, Pete Alonso and Dominic Smith, among others, has been great to see. As many have said, the hiring of Rojas seems incredibly popular amongst players. Thus, this level of response is not surprising.

I understand there are some questions about Rojas being a first-time big-league manager, and there was buzz that there was some doubt organizationally if he was ready to be a big-league manager when he interviewed in October for the job. Do not be mistaken though, Rojas is an incredibly qualified person for this job. He is a baseball lifer with the bloodlines from the Alou family, which is one of the most respected families in baseball history. While he may not have big-league managing experience, you are talking about a guy who has managed in the Mets organization since 2007 with the Mets Dominican Summer League team. 

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John Harper, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The more you hear about Luis Rojas, the more reason there is to believe he could be a good major-league manager. But is he ready in 2020? Will his inexperience cost the Mets in a win-now season? How will he react to being grilled daily about every significant decision he makes?

So many questions that nobody can answer until the games begin, and it's the great unknown that makes this such a huge gamble for Brodie Van Wagenen, especially with the expectation of a change in ownership that could raise the stakes even higher for the GM this season.

To me, it's the reason it made more sense to go get a proven commodity like a Buck Showalter or a Dusty Baker, especially after the Carlos Beltran hire backfired on the Mets and added a level of chaos that begged for credibility in the manager's office. 

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Pete Alonso, John Harper
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Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

With the wildly different takes on Luis Rojas that have surfaced during a week of reporting rolling around in my head, it was hard to form an opinion on the Mets' managerial choice. 

Then, during SNY's breaking news coverage, Keith Hernandez summed it up in a way that finally made sense: "I'm going to need at least 24 hours to digest this."

Keith was on the right track there. Our only amendment to his take is that we might need even more time -- 24 weeks maybe? -- to formulate an informed take on the news.

Tags: Dominic Smith, Jacob deGrom, Pete Alonso, Robinson Cano, Andy Martino
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Sep 7, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pinch hitter Jed Lowrie (4) reacts after striking out with two men on base against the Philadelphia Phillies during the fourth
		inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 7, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pinch hitter Jed Lowrie (4) reacts after striking out with two men on base against the Philadelphia Phillies during the fourth inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

While the Mets have reportedly discussed Jed Lowrie in potential trades throughout the offseason, New York and general manager Brodie Van Wagenen are pleased with the infielder's progress entering 2020.

After a 2019 season in which he only played nine games due to injuries, Lowrie is making strides ahead of his second season with the Mets.

"We were pleased with his progress on where he's at physically," Van Wagenen said, according to Deesha Thosar of the New York Daily News. "We did some testing to measure his strengths (and) he's progressing to the point where we're optimistic of having him participate in a meaningful way in (Spring Training) games."

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Aug 1, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Luis Avilan (43) delivers the ball in the eight inning against the Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports (Quinn Harris)
Aug 1, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Luis Avilan (43) delivers the ball in the eight inning against the Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field. Mandatory Credit: Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports (Quinn Harris)

The Yankees signed former Mets LHP Luis Avilan to a minor-league contract with a major-league Spring Training invite, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Avilan, 30, went 4-0 on the 2019 season with a 5.06 ERA and 30 strikeouts to 14 walks in 45 games.

He logged his first seven MLB seasons with four different teams, joining the Mets after spending 2018 on the Chicago White Sox and Philadelphia Phillies, pitching to a 2-1 record and 3.77 ERA.

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Mets manager Luis Rojas
Mets manager Luis Rojas

New Mets manager Luis Rojas is a relative unknown to most. However, among his attributes, he is already well-respected inside the Mets' clubhouse, has been around the team for over a decade, has tons of managerial experience, and has famous MLB bloodlines.

Here are five things to know about Rojas...

Was viewed as a rising star when he managed in minors

While coaching for the Mets in the minors, Rojas was voted by his peers as the best managerial prospect in the Florida State League (with the High-A St. Lucie Mets) in 2015 and 2016 after being voted as the best managerial prospect in the South Atlantic League (with Low-A) in 2014, according to JJ Cooper of Baseball America

Tags: Dominic Smith, Jeff McNeil, Pete Alonso, Danny Abriano
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Yoenis Cespedes (52) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Yoenis Cespedes (52) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Mets outfielder Yoenis Cespedes has been crossing thresholds this offseason as he continues to work his way back from multiple ankle fractures that ended his 2019 season before it began. And he's getting closer to being a realistic option for the 26-man roster to start the 2020 season.

Cespedes' hitting progression has "reached the point where he's ready to go for spring training on the offensive side," Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen said on Wednesday.

Of course, being ready to go on the offensive side is only one half of what Cespedes needs to do in order to be a player who can start games for the Mets this coming season.

Tags: Michael Conforto, Pete Alonso, Yoenis Cespedes, Danny Abriano
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The Mets have named Luis Rojas their next manager, and SNY's Mets game analyst Keith Hernandez was very straight-forward with his reaction. 

"This is kind of just my initial reaction: I must admit I'm absolutely stunned at the choice -- not for any negative reason," he said. "I'm not so concerned about how he handles the press. He's a very bright guy, I think he'll be fine with the media.

"My concern is, and I believe that a manager has to be the leader of the team, you're getting a very young manager with virtually no major league experience taking over the team."

Hernandez, who admitted that Joe Girardi was the guy he wanted from the onset, continued to discuss the hiring by talking about today's trend in hiring new managers, and how Rojas' experience with the Mets should help him down the road with his roster...

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The Mets have found their replacement for Carlos Beltran as manager in Luis Rojas, who is finalizing a multi-year deal with the team

And the players are very excited about the new hire. 

Some of the current Mets -- and even some of Rojas' old pupils from the minors -- have commented on the news. Here are a few reactions, starting with Pete Alonso, who was quick to share his happiness on Twitter...

Tags: Dominic Smith, Pete Alonso, Scott Thompson
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Luis Rojas (Treated Image by SNY)
Luis Rojas (Treated Image by SNY)

The Mets are working to finalize a multi-year deal to make Luis Rojas their next manager.

Rojas, 38, had been one of the Mets' three finalists for manager, along with Hensley Meulens and Tony DeFrancesco, SNY's Andy Martino reported Tuesday.

The Mets' coaching staff around Rojas will remain intact, according to Martino. That staff includes Meulens (the bench coach, who had also been linked to the managerial opening in Boston) and DeFrancesco (the first base coach who managed Triple-A Syracuse in 2019).

 

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Mets quality control coach Luis Rojas (Jasen Vinlove)
Mets quality control coach Luis Rojas (Jasen Vinlove)

The Mets are finalizing a multi-year deal to make Luis Rojas their next manager, replacing Carlos Beltran who mutually parted ways with the team last Thursday. 

Rojas was getting plenty of buzz as the Mets conducted their second managerial search of the offseason, with team brass focused on an in-house option to take over. The 38-year-old has managerial experience in the minors and was the team's quality control coach before this promotion. 

However, there were some doubts on Rojas, as it was said the team didn't believe he was ready to take over as manager back in November when he was initially considered for the job. That has clearly changed now, and some current Mets always believed Rojas had what it took to be a big league manager after playing under him. 

Tags: Dominic Smith, Jeff McNeil, Pete Alonso, Tomas Nido, Danny Abriano
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Sep 30, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) celebrates his second home run of the game a solo home run in the seventh inning against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports (Ron Chenoy)
Sep 30, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) celebrates his second home run of the game a solo home run in the seventh inning against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports (Ron Chenoy)

Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The relationship between Nolan Arenado and the Rockies could be irretrievably broken, with the star third baseman recently going public over his frustration with GM Jeff Bridich.

After Bridich said earlier this week that the team had listened to Arenado trade offers and planned to move forward with him on the team in 2020, Arenado shot back. And if Colorado again opens trade talks, the Cardinals and Rangers could be two of the strongest suitors for Arenado, Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported on Wednesday.

According to Morosi, the Rockies have informed interested teams that they would have to improve their 2020 big league team and acquire prospects in any deal for Arenado.

Tags: Dominic Smith, Pete Alonso, Danny Abriano
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Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter |

With the Mets' second managerial search of the offseason starting to wind down, three names have emerged, according to SNY's Andy Martino.

Barring a late entrant or unknown candidate, the race is down to internal options Luis Rojas, Hensley Meulens, and Tony DeFrancesco

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Danny Abriano
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Ronny Mauricio (Tom Priddy, Four Seam Images)
Ronny Mauricio (Tom Priddy, Four Seam Images)

As they do every year, Baseball America has released its new Top 100 prospects in the game list heading into the 2020 season. And two Mets have made the cut. 

Shortstop Ronny Mauricio and catcher Francisco Alvarez have come in at No. 66 and 67, respectively, on the list. 

The outlet already had Mauricio as its top prospect in the Mets organization, as the 18-year-old has shown tremendous progress in just two seasons of pro ball. He slashed .268/.307/.357 with four homers and 37 RBI over 116 games with Low-A Columbia last season. If he continues that growth, Mauricio has a chance to find himself in Double-A at some point this year. 

Tags: Robinson Cano, Ronny Mauricio, Scott Thompson
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Hensley Meulens (Treated Image by SNY)
Hensley Meulens (Treated Image by SNY)

The Mets' search for a new manager could be reaching its final stages.

According to SNY's Andy Martino, the Mets have narrowed the search down to three internal candidates: Luis Rojas, Hensley Meulens, and Tony DeFrancesco.

Martino notes that while there's a chance another candidate could still enter the mix, the Mets "see benefits of going internal."

Tags: Dominic Smith, Jeff McNeil, Pete Alonso
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Jun 15, 2016; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets catcher Rene Rivera (44) talks with New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) during ninth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citi Field. The Mets defeated the Pirates 11-2. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Jun 15, 2016; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets catcher Rene Rivera (44) talks with New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) during ninth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Citi Field. The Mets defeated the Pirates 11-2. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Mets made a move to address their catching depth on Tuesday evening. 

According to USA Today's Bob Nightengale, the Mets are bringing back veteran Rene Rivera on a minor-league deal. Per Nightengale, the contract is worth $1 million, though there are $300,000 worth of incentives if he makes the big-league team.

Rivera, 36, has played parts of three seasons with the Mets. After beginning his Major League career with stops in Seattle, Minnesota, San Diego and Tampa Bay, Rivera joined the Mets in 2016, when he appeared in 65 games and hit .222 with six home runs and 26 RBI. He had previously had a stop with the Mets organization in 2009, but never played higher than Triple-A that season.

Tags: Rene Rivera
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May 28, 2016; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets former infielder Wally Backman is introduced to the crowd during a pregame ceremony honoring the 1986 World Series Championship team prior to the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
May 28, 2016; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets former infielder Wally Backman is introduced to the crowd during a pregame ceremony honoring the 1986 World Series Championship team prior to the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Wally Backman, former Mets second baseman and currently the manager of the Long Island Ducks, was in court on Long Island on Tuesday for alleged criminal mischief and harassment.

Backman, 60, allegedly shoved his ex-girlfriend Amanda Byrnes into a wall and stopped her from calling police when the incident occurred in August.

According to the New York Post, Backman faces up to a year in prison if convicted.

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Mets OF Yoenis Cespedes
Mets OF Yoenis Cespedes

When the offseason began, the thought of Yoenis Cespedes contributing to the 2020 Mets was a pipe dream. Then he started hitting bombs. Then his contract was restructured to incentivize him making it back on the field. Then he started running.

Now, the idea that the 34-year-old Cespedes will trot out to left field in in the top of the first inning on March 26 against the Nationals at Citi Field before toting his lumber to the batter's box in the bottom of the first seems downright plausible.

Yes, Cespedes still needs to prove he can handle a full nine innings in left field. And yes, he still needs to get through the rest of the offseason without suffering any setbacks. But after roughly two seasons on the shelf, Yo is close. And his healthy return could have serious ripple effects on the 2020 Mets...

A very crowded situation in left field

In a world without a healthy Cespedes, the Mets would likely enter the 2020 season with J.D. Davis, Brandon Nimmo, and Michael Conforto as their starting outfielders from left to right.

Tags: Amed Rosario, Brandon Nimmo, JD Davis, Jeff McNeil, Michael Conforto, Robinson Cano, Wilson Ramos, Yoenis Cespedes, Danny Abriano
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Feb 15, 2019; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; New York Mets quality control coach Luis Rojas (60) during spring training at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)
Feb 15, 2019; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; New York Mets quality control coach Luis Rojas (60) during spring training at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)

The Mets remain "hopeful of choosing a manager within the next few days," SNY's Andy Martino reported on Tuesday, adding that he has still not heard of any external candidates being in the mix.

Still, while the names of serious external candidates haven't come out, Martino cautioned that it doesn't definitely mean there aren't any.

As the Mets continue their search for Carlos Beltran's replacement, with most of the buzz surrounding internal candidates such as Luis Rojas, the Astros have seemingly cast a much wider net.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Danny Abriano
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Rockies 3B Nolan Arenado
Rockies 3B Nolan Arenado

The following are insights, ideas and notes gathered from recent conversations with team sources, rival executives, reporters, front office assistants and talent evaluators...


Nolan Arenado isn't happy

Arenado was set to become a free agent after 2019, but signed a long-term contract that he can opt out of after 2021. During negotiations, he was assured the Rockies would make additions and increase payroll to push for a deeper postseason run. So far, that hasn't happened. In fact, they took a step back -- finishing 71-91 in 2019 -- and are on pace to reduce payroll from last season to this season.

The buzz from Colorado is that Arenado is frustrated because the Rockies are not following through on their promise. At this point, it seems likely he'll opt out unless dealt to another team. The thing is, the acquiring team almost certainly has questions about how the opt out will be handled.

Tags: Amed Rosario, Brandon Nimmo, Curtis Granderson, Edwin Diaz, Giancarlo Stanton, Noah Syndergaard, Steven Matz, Matthew Cerrone
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Sep 24, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) reacts after striking out against the San Francisco Giants in the third inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports (John Hefti)
Sep 24, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) reacts after striking out against the San Francisco Giants in the third inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports (John Hefti)

Interested parties should take note: The increasingly tumultuous relationship between the Rockies and their All-Star third baseman Nolan Arenado appears to be getting even, err, rockier.

On Monday evening, the Denver Post reported that Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich was no longer fielding offers for Arenado, who signed an eight-year, $260 million extension with the team prior to last season. 

"With the season coming up and spring training on the horizon, we are going to start focusing on that," Bridich said. "We have listened to teams regarding Nolan and really nothing has come of it. We are going to move forward pretty much as we expected -- with Nolan in the purple and black and as our third baseman.

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As the Mets continue to look for a new manager, a few names have surfaced, some of whom have interviewed for other open spots, but nothing has emerged just yet.

On SNY's The Thread, the panel discusses whether or not it's time for Mets fans to panic.

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Jun 18, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) throws against the Atlanta Braves in the fifth inning at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
		 (Brett Davis)
Jun 18, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) throws against the Atlanta Braves in the fifth inning at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports (Brett Davis)

The Mets are still reeling and in search of the man who's going to manage their roster in 2020, but the oddsmakers aren't too down on them for that. 

Odds Shark posted early over/ under totals for the 2020 MLB season and the Mets are in a tie for the fifth-highest over/ under total in the National League. 

Sitting at 86.5, the Mets are tied with the Cubs at that number. However, the over/ unders released indicate what many predict in 2020: the NL East is going to be tight. 

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May 2, 2017; Atlanta, GA, USA; General view of New York Mets helmet in the dugout before a game against the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
		 (Brett Davis)
May 2, 2017; Atlanta, GA, USA; General view of New York Mets helmet in the dugout before a game against the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports (Brett Davis)

Blaine McIntosh, the Mets' 13th round selection at the 2019 MLB Draft, earned a prestigious honor this past weekend. 

McIntosh took home the 2019 Todd Helton Award, given to Tennessee's high school baseball player of the year. 

The 18-year-old is a speedy 6-foot-4 center field prospect who was described an as "explosive" outfielder by MLB.com prior to the draft. 

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Yoenis Cespedes
Yoenis Cespedes

Yoenis Cespedes said he would have a grand comeback this season, and the latest video of his offseason workouts shows he's preparing to live up to his word. 

Cespedes is down in Port St. Lucie putting in work that includes running on turf, hitting batting practice, and in typical Cespedes fashion, making absurd catches in the outfield...

CLICK BELOW TO SEE THE VIDEO

Tags: Yoenis Cespedes
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Luis Rojas
Luis Rojas

After mutually parting ways with Carlos Beltran, the Mets are searching for a new manager. Here's the latest on candidate Luis Rojas ...


Jan. 20, 4:08 PM:

After MLB Network's Jon Heyman reported Buck Showalter, Dusty Baker and John Gibbons were all getting interviews from the Astros, SNY's Andy Martino came to Twitter to agree. But he also dropped this nugget about Rojas...

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Eduardo Perez
Eduardo Perez

The Mets are currently searching for their next manager after mutually parting ways with Carlos Beltran, and ESPN analyst Eduardo Perez is a top candidate to replace him. 

Here is the latest news on Perez...


Jan. 20, 3:23 PM:

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Sep 27, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Marcus Stroman (7) goes to the dugout after giving up two runs to the Atlanta Braves in the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports
		
		 (Noah K. Murray)
Sep 27, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Marcus Stroman (7) goes to the dugout after giving up two runs to the Atlanta Braves in the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Mets RHP Marcus Stroman is back on Twitter to talk about the Astros' sign-stealing scandal, and this time, he has video. 

Stroman spoke out about the situation in general last week, saying "This is crazy. Truly can't believe all this s--t coming out in baseball." But the right-hander did his research and found a clip put together by Daily Hive Toronto's Ian Hunter that shows very clearly the Astros using their sign-stealing method against Stroman. 

His reaction? 

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Sep 29, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets third baseman David Wright (5) speaks to the crowd after a game against the Miami Marlins at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 29, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets third baseman David Wright (5) speaks to the crowd after a game against the Miami Marlins at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Mets legend David Wright had already made it known that managing wasn't on his mind after ending his playing career following the 2018 season. 

And that is still the case today. 

MLB Network's Jon Heyman did his due diligence on the matter with the Mets currently looking for a new manager after mutually parting ways with Carlos Beltran. Wright's answer is just the one you'd expect...

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Oct 9, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker (12) walks to the mound against the Chicago Cubs during the seventh inning in game three of the 2017 NLDS playoff baseball series at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports (Jerry Lai)
Oct 9, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker (12) walks to the mound against the Chicago Cubs during the seventh inning in game three of the 2017 NLDS playoff baseball series at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports (Jerry Lai)

The Mets continue their search for their next manager after mutually parting ways with Carlos Beltran on Thursday. Multiple names have surfaced as potential replacements for Beltran, and with less than a month until pitchers and catchers report to Port St. Lucie, a decision could be coming soon. 

Here is the latest on each candidate...


Hensley Meulens

The Mets bench coach is a top candidate for the position, but New York isn't the only team considering him as a replacement at the moment.

According to MLB Network's Jon Heyman, the Red Sox has showing some interest in Meulens. Alex Cora also parted ways with Boston following the Astros' sign-stealing scandal, throwing them into the manager search now as well. 

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Hensley Meulens (Jason Getz)
Hensley Meulens (Jason Getz)

In the wake of the electronic sign-stealing scandal that ultimately left three MLB teams without managers, one is reportedly eyeing a relatively recent addition to the Mets' coaching staff.

The Red Sox "have shown interest" in recently hired Mets bench coach Hensley Meulens, according to a Sunday evening report from Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

A follow-up note from Heyman moments later added that the Mets had not contacted John Gibbons or Buck Showalter. Both are reportedly candidates for the Astros, whom Dusty Baker is focused on.

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Jan 19, 2020; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) celebrates with the Lamar Hunt Trophy after beating the Tennessee Titans in the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports (Jay Biggerstaff)
Jan 19, 2020; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) celebrates with the Lamar Hunt Trophy after beating the Tennessee Titans in the AFC Championship Game at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports (Jay Biggerstaff)

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes' performance in Sunday's AFC Championship Game, a 35-24 win over the Tennessee Titans at Arrowhead Stadium, resonated with more than just the average NFL fan.

As the Chiefs clinched their first Super Bowl appearance since January 1970, the only set of rings they have to date, former Mets catcher Mike Piazza saluted Mahomes on the signal caller's heroic effort.

Piazza, who played with Mahomes' father and former Mets RHP Patrick Mahomes Sr. from 1999-00, took to Twitter late Sunday evening and extended an according shout-out.

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Oct 9, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker (12) in the dugout during the sixth inning in game three of the 2017 NLDS playoff baseball series against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports (Jerry Lai)
Oct 9, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker (12) in the dugout during the sixth inning in game three of the 2017 NLDS playoff baseball series against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports (Jerry Lai)

After mutually parting ways with Carlos Beltran, the Mets are searching for a new manager. Here's the latest...


Jan. 19, 9:05 PM:

Dusty Baker has not heard from the Mets or Red Sox and is focused on the Astros, he said Sunday evening while updating his managerial pursuit with reporters in Houston, including Brian McTaggart of MLB.com.

Tags: Carlos Beltran
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 (Jeff Curry)
(Jeff Curry)

Steroids blew up the record books, changed the way we look at Cooperstown talent and cast a shadow of distrust and suspicion over the National Pastime.

Sign stealing has polluted the World Series, besmirched talented championship teams, cost four prominent executives their jobs - so far - and is making some wonder if technology should be banned from ballgames.

With the current uproar over sign stealing, there seems to be a natural urge to measure one modern scandal against the other. Both plunged spiny tentacles deep into the soul of the baseball, but which is worse, getting jacked up chemically to play better, or swinging based on ill-gotten electronic intel?

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SNY's Keith Hernandez sat down to talk with comedian Jerry Seinfeld about how the former Mets first baseman landed on an episode of Seinfeld.

"I don't know if Larry (David) has ever said to you how we landed on you," Seinfeld said. "He must've asked me who was my favorite Met at the time, and I'm sure I said you."

Hernandez famously appeared as a guest star in "The Boyfriend" episode of Seinfeld's sitcom which aired Feb. 12, 1992.

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Sep 17, 2019; Denver, CO, USA; New York Mets second baseman Joe Panik (2) hits a single in the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)
Sep 17, 2019; Denver, CO, USA; New York Mets second baseman Joe Panik (2) hits a single in the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)

After returning home to New York towards the end of last season, Joe Panik is now headed north of the border. The Hopewell Junction, N.Y., native and St. John's product has agreed to a deal with the Blue Jays, according to MLB.com's Jon Heyman.

Panik, 29, was released by the Giants in August after spending the first six seasons of his Major League career in San Francisco. He finished sixth in Rookie of the Year voting in 2014, was named an NL All-Star in 2015, but never fully developed into the player the Giants were hoping for when they drafted him in the first round in 2011. 

Panik slashed just .235/.310/.317 in 108 games with Giants last year, but was quickly signed by the Mets just two days after his release. He rebounded slightly with the change of scenery, finishing his 39-game stint in Queens with a .277/.333/.404 slash line.

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On Friday's Baseball Night in New York, SNY's John Harper and Anthony McCarron, along with Newsday's David Lennon, revealed their 2020 ballots for the Baseball Hall of Fame.

While Derek Jeter appears on all three ballots -- as he awaits to find out if he will join teammate Mariano Rivera as the only unanimous Hall of Famers - there were some notable differences between the three ballots, mainly due to baseball's steroid era.

The Hall of Fame class of 2020 will be announced on Tuesday, January 21. Here is a look at the complete ballot.

 

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The Mets are in upheaval roughly three weeks before spring training starts as they search for a new manager to replace Carlos Beltran.

In his latest mailbag, Matthew Cerrone answers questions about the Beltran situation and more...


The elephant in the room -- and the overwhelming question asked of me -- has been about who I want the Mets to hire to replace Carlos Beltran.

In the wake of the Phillies hiring Joe Girardi, who was my top choice at the start of the offseason, I advocated for Eduardo Perez -- not Beltran. I still like Perez, who I think has a unique mix of relatable player experience, knowledge of stats and feel for the game, media savvy, professionalism, in-game management skills and a commanding presence on and off the field. He signed a new deal with ESPN that can be broken if he is offered a gig to run a team or dugout.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Dellin Betances, Edwin Diaz, Seth Lugo, Matthew Cerrone
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Credit: Las Vegas Review-Journal YouTube
Credit: Las Vegas Review-Journal YouTube

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

No baseball team wants to find itself searching for a manager in late January, but that's where the Mets find themselves, after baseball's massive electronic cheating scandal swallowed Carlos Beltran.

The team did at least conduct an exhaustive search last October. The Mets will now lean on that work -- which began as two sets of lists on a white board in their offices, and continued on to include many in-person interviews -- as they try to make a quick but thoughtful decision on who should lead the club this year.

GM Brodie Van Wagenen declined comment on the process. Other indications are that the Mets would like to have a new manager by the end of next week.

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
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