Call to the Majors: Plawecki 00:01:44
In the latest installment of Call to the Majors presented by Citi, Kevin Plawecki recalls the day he was promoted to the Major Leagues.

Mets backup catcher Kevin Plawecki, 25, hit just .197 with a .298 OBP in 48 games with the Mets season. However, he hit .300 with 19 extra-base hits in 48 games with Triple-A Las Vegas.

Plawecki will earn the league minimum the next two seasons, after which he is under team control and eligible for arbitration through 2021.

In early-November, Mets GM Sandy Alderson said he planned to enter Spring Training with Travis d'Arnaud, Rene Rivera, and Plawecki as his group of catchers and that he had no interest in adding someone new from outside the organization.

Tags: Kevin Plawecki

Melvin talks Mets GM job 00:02:22
Mets GM candidate Doug Melvin discusses his interview for the job, what he would look to accomplish, and the role of analytics in the game

The biggest question surrounding Mets GM candidate Doug Melvin has been why he wants to return now after stepping down as Brewers GM in 2015 -- and suggesting at the time that the job of a GM might be better-suited to a younger person.

While speaking after his second-round interview on Tuesday, the 66-year-old Melvin said that for the most part, he just needed a break.

"That's probably how I felt at that particular time," Melvin said about feeling the job might be better for a younger person. "Maybe I needed a break from it at that point," he said, adding that he "Gradually got a couple of years where I could take a breather after 20 years as a GM."

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Feb 19, 2018; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon (left) talks with manager Mickey Callaway (right) during practice drills at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports  (Steve Mitchell)
Feb 19, 2018; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon (left) talks with manager Mickey Callaway (right) during practice drills at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter | With Fred Wilpon now involved in the GM interview process, it is now becoming more clear how the Mets will proceed in choosing a new leader for their baseball operations department. According to major league sources, the team is likely to make a hire before the GM meetings in early November -- and could zero in on its selection as soon as this week.

The Mets have not authorized anyone to discuss this search on any level, but the following information is gathered from sources with direct knowledge of their process, granted anonymity to speak freely.

"This could move pretty fast," said one person involved. "I think they would like to have clarity on which direction to go by the end of the week."

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The Mets have narrowed their GM search to three candidates: CAA's Brodie Van Wagenen, former Rangers and Brewers GM Doug Melvin, and Rays senior VP of baseball operations Chaim Bloom.

Second round interviews are expected to wrap up later this week, with the Mets potentially making the new hire shortly after. 

Who is Doug Melvin?

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The Mets have narrowed their GM search to three candidates: CAA's Brodie Van Wagenen, former Rangers and Brewers GM Doug Melvin, and Rays senior VP of baseball operations Chaim Bloom.

Second round interviews are expected to wrap up later this week, with the Mets potentially making the new hire shortly after. 

Who is Brodie Van Wagenen?

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Oct 11, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) celebrates after making a basket during the second quarter against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports (Sergio Estrada)
Oct 11, 2018; Sacramento, CA, USA; Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (45) celebrates after making a basket during the second quarter against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports (Sergio Estrada)

Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell donned a Jacob deGrom jersey as he arrived for Monday night's game against the Grizzlies.

Mitchell, whose father is the director of player relations for the Mets, has repeatedly voiced his support for the team -- and with deGrom vying for the NL Cy Young, it's not surprising to see him wearing #48.

Tags: Jacob deGrom
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Apr 3, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view of fans outside Citi Field before a game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 3, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view of fans outside Citi Field before a game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

As the Mets complied their initial list of possible candidates to lead baseball operations, prominent agent Casey Close was among the wide range of people they considered.

But, as it turns out, the team never ended up interviewing Close. And according to a person familiar with Close's thinking, he did not seek the job and was not interested in leaving his behind his career as an agent.

Close has been friends with Mets COO Jeff Wilpon for years, and most recently worked with him on Michael Cuddyer's contract and retirement agreement. But the two have not spoken since the end of the season.

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May 26, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Mets Chairman Fred Wilpon looks on during batting practice before the Mets play the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
May 26, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Mets Chairman Fred Wilpon looks on during batting practice before the Mets play the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Mets owner Fred Wilpon began the process Monday of interviewing finalists for the Mets' head of baseball operations job by speaking with agent Brodie Van Wagenen.

Wilpon, along with his son and COO Jeff Wilpon and a few other Mets executives, spoke to Van Wagenen about the position. Van Wagenen and his group at CAA represents prominent Mets Jacob deGrom, Yoenis Cespedes, Noah Syndergaard, Todd Frazier and Tim Tebow.

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The Mets need to make multiple guesses about the health and likely production of their in-house options at first base before considering whether to acquire someone new heading into 2019.

Triple-A 1B prospect Peter Alonso will almost certainly be promoted and starting every day at Citi Field at some point after May, which is typically the cut off for Super Two qualification. This delay is common around baseball -- just ask Kris Bryant, Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron JudgeMike Trout and countless other top prospects that were held down by their teams until late Spring, early Summer for financial benefit. 

I'm sure the Mets would prefer to use Jay Bruce, Wilmer Flores and Todd Frazier at first base until Alonso is promoted... 

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Dec 14, 2017; Orlando, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays senior vice president, baseball operations Chaim Bloom during the MLB winter meetings at Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Dec 14, 2017; Orlando, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Rays senior vice president, baseball operations Chaim Bloom during the MLB winter meetings at Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets spent Monday morning huddling over their first-round GM interviews, and in the afternoon decided that Brodie Van Wagenen, Doug Melvin and Chaim Bloom would advance to second round interviews with Fred and Jeff Wilpon.

According to a person with direct knowledge of the process, a fourth candidate could still emerge.

The team did significant legwork on MLB exec Kim Ng and agent Casey Close, because both were serious, qualified candidates. But ultimately, they decided that the other three held more appeal to them.

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Apr 28, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs number 10 pick Patrick Mahomes II poses for a photo with his mother Randi and father Pat during the press conference at Stram Theatre. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports (Denny Medley)
Apr 28, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs number 10 pick Patrick Mahomes II poses for a photo with his mother Randi and father Pat during the press conference at Stram Theatre. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports (Denny Medley)

The most-talked about quarterback in the NFL, Patrick Mahomes II of the Chiefs, is the son of former Mets pitcher Pat Mahomes, who you may remember from Bobby Valentine's postseason teams in 1999 and 2000.

Prior to Sunday Night's matchup against the Bengals, the young Mahomes arrived at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City wearing his father's No. 23 Mets jersey

"Pat Mahomes was honestly one of the best guys I ever managed," Valentine told me earlier Monday of the elder Mahomes. "He was a pitcher, but also one of the best athletes I ever had. He could hit and run the bases, so much so I considered occasionally using him in the outfield."

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Kim Ng on field before a game in Los Angeles. Credit: Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports
Kim Ng on field before a game in Los Angeles. Credit: Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets are currently working to pare down their current list of candidates to lead baseball operations from five to two or three, and will begin second round interviews this week.

As we reported Friday, Doug Melvin, Chaim Bloom, Kim Ng, Brodie Van Wagenen and Casey Close are in the running. Two or three of those will soon be voted off the island, and the survivors will meet with Fred and Jeff Wilpon.

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Patrick Mahomes (15) Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Patrick Mahomes (15) Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

Ahead of his Sunday Night Football matchup against the Bengals, Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes arrived at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City donning a different jersey than his normal No. 15. 

Instead, he wore his father's No. 23 Mets jersey. 

CLICK BELOW TO SEE THE VIDEO

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Jul 15, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; USA infielder Peter Alonso (34) hits a two run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)
Jul 15, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; USA infielder Peter Alonso (34) hits a two run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)

Every Sunday, we'll be taking a look at how notable Mets prospects are faring in the Arizona Fall League. The AFL features some of the best prospects in baseball and its regular season runs through Nov. 15. The Championship Game is Nov. 17. 


Peter Alonso, 1B

The 23-year-old Alonso, the No. 58 prospect in baseball according to MLB.com, has played nine games and is hitting .306/.390/.611 with three homers and two doubles in 36 at-bats while drawing five walks and striking out 10 times...

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There is no offseason for Shea Anything, and in this all-new episode, Doug Williams and Andy Martino tell you what you need to know about all the candidates in the Mets GM search. They also look for learnings in the MLB Playoffs, and wonder whether defense will matter more to the Mets moving forward.

Don't forget - we want hear from you! Go to SNY.tv/SheaAnything and upload a video or audio clip of your take on the Mets. Keep it to 30 seconds or less, make it good, and you may be on the show!

Click below to listen...

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USA infielder Peter Alonso hits a two-run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Park. (Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports)
USA infielder Peter Alonso hits a two-run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Park. (Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports)

Top Mets prospect Peter Alonso has enjoyed success at the plate during his time in the Arizona Fall League so far, and though he went 1-for-6 on Saturday, his one hit may not have landed yet. 

Alonso crushed a two-run, ninth-inning homer that solidified a win for the Scottsdale Scorpions. The 23-year-old now has three homers in 36 at-bats.

CLICK BELOW TO SEE THE HOMER

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Feb 15, 2018; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals director player development Gary LaRocque uses his cell phone during workout drill at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)
Feb 15, 2018; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals director player development Gary LaRocque uses his cell phone during workout drill at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)

The list of candidates for the Mets new head of baseball operations has shortened, with Cardinals director of player development Gary LaRocque and former Diamondbacks SVP of baseball operations De Jon Watson out of the running, SNY's Andy Martino confirmed on Friday. 

According to Martino, the list is now shortened to that of Kim Ng, Chaim Bloom, Doug Melvin, Brodie Van Wagenen and Casey Close.

LaRocque, in particular, had the scouting background that is in owner Fred Wilpon's favor. However, some believe he was using the Mets' GM interview as leverage to get the Cardinals to offer a contract extension.

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Feb 14, 2018; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; A general view of a New York Mets hat and glove on the grass during a workout at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Feb 14, 2018; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; A general view of a New York Mets hat and glove on the grass during a workout at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets have not yet made a final determination of which candidates will advance to the second round of interviews for the GM/head of baseball operations job, but as they deliberate, several people both inside and outside the organization are advocating for longtime Texas and Milwaukee GM Doug Melvin.

Melvin, 66, carries a reputation vastly different from controversial Cardinals farm director Gary LaRocque. 

Melvin is known as a consensus-builder, and is "open-minded," in the words of one significantly younger baseball official who is more analytically inclined.

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The Mets finally have enough young talent to trade for an impact hitter, according to multiple talent evaluators. And if they include a big-league pitcher in the deal, such as Noah Syndergaard or Zack Wheeler, they have enough talent to pull off a blockbuster...

The current price to trade for an elite hitter requires at least one of your top 20 prospects, including two of your team's top 10, who is also among the overall Top 100 in the league.

The Mets have four top-100 prospects, according to MLB.com -- 19-year old Jarred Kelenic, 20-year-old Andres Gimenez, and 23-year olds Peter Alonso and Justin Dunn...

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It was 12 years ago today that Mets OF Endy Chavez made his legendary, snow cone catch to rob Cardinals 3B Scott Rolen of what would've been a go-ahead home run during Game 7 of the 2006 NLCS at Shea Stadium.

"It was very special for me," Chavez told NJ.com's Matt Ehalt in 2016. "People are still talking about it like it was last season. I'm very grateful because I have very good support from the fans, especially from Mets fans. I remember every second of that moment."

Click below to watch...

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USA infielder Peter Alonso hits a two-run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Park. (Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports)
USA infielder Peter Alonso hits a two-run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Park. (Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports)

At times Peter Alonso has been portrayed via scouting reports as the worst defensive first baseman since Mike Piazza, if you remember how that ill-fated -- and brief -- position switch went for the Hall of Fame catcher late in his Mets' career.

In that case it would make sense to dangle Alonso, the 23-year old slugger, as trade bait to American League teams this winter to help fill immediate needs elsewhere, notably at catcher or in the bullpen.

Except the Mets insist it's not the case at all...

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Sep 26, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) reacts after the top of the eighth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 26, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) reacts after the top of the eighth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Chipper Jones almost sounds like a Mets fan as he discusses Jacob deGrom's magical 2018 season, gushing how the righty's performance was "Maddux-esque."

"I saw utter domination," Jones says. "I mean, you're talking about an all-time type season."

Jones, the Hall of Fame third baseman who tormented the Mets during his playing career in Atlanta, isn't trying to make up all that history to Flushing faithful with a few kind words. No, the former Braves' star is "a baseball fan. I'm a baseball realist and a baseball historian, to a certain extent...

Tags: Jacob deGrom, Anthony McCarron
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Feb 15, 2018; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals director player development Gary LaRocque uses his cell phone during workout drill at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)
Feb 15, 2018; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals director player development Gary LaRocque uses his cell phone during workout drill at Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports (Steve Mitchell)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets are just about done speaking to new candidates to lead baseball operations at a crucial time for the franchise. The time for brainstorming is over, and the team is now scrutinizing individuals, and what kind of leader each person would be.

Each of the six known interviewees brings questions, as anyone would. Kim Ng, Chaim Bloom, De Jon Watson are impressive in different ways, but have never done the job. Dave Littlefield's record in Pittsburgh was uninspiring at best. Doug Melvin is not exactly new school, though his reputation as a "great guy, and open minded," in the words of one baseball official makes him intriguing in this field.

I've been asking executives around the league for opinions on these people for weeks, and Cardinals director of player development Gary LaRocque has easily raised the most questions among those who have worked with or around him.

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The Amazin' Life: Season Finale! 00:02:47
On a new episode of The Amazin' Life presented by Coca-Cola, Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling deliver a season finale, and a cliffhanger?

On an all-new episode of The Amazin' Life presented by Coca-Cola, Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling deliver a big season finale the only way they should, by making fun of other famous season finales!

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Apr 5, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view as the sun sets over Citi Field during the second inning between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 5, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view as the sun sets over Citi Field during the second inning between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Mets have interviewed Tigers' vice president of player development Dave Littlefield for their open GM role, SNY's Andy Martino confirmed on Wednesday. 

Martino noted the list of GM candidates was incomplete on Tuesday, and it appears that is the case with the Littlefield interview. The 58-year-old joined the Pirates in 2001, serving as its senior vice president. He also worked as their GM on a temporary basis in 2007. 

After the 2007 season, Littlefield joined the Cubs as a scout, and would later hold the same role with the Tigers in 2014. In 2015, he was promoted to his current position. 

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Oct 16, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Manny Machado (8) celebrates with catcher Yasmani Grandal (9) after scoring on an RBI single by center fielder Cody Bellinger (not pictured) defeat the Milwaukee Brewers in the thirteenth inning in game four of the 2018 NLCS playoff baseball series at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports (Richard Mackson)
Oct 16, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Manny Machado (8) celebrates with catcher Yasmani Grandal (9) after scoring on an RBI single by center fielder Cody Bellinger (not pictured) defeat the Milwaukee Brewers in the thirteenth inning in game four of the 2018 NLCS playoff baseball series at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports (Richard Mackson)

With the Mets clearly in need of adding a veteran catcher, I expect to soon hear a lot of rumors connecting them to current Dodgers catcher and soon-to-free-agent Yasmani Grandal.

Similarly, Mets fans and media will spend the next month or two pressuring the team to break the bank for current Dodgers third baseman Manny Machado, who will be the most prized free agent of the winter.

Interestingly, the above players are a hot topic in the baseball world Wednesday, both which should be of particular interest to Mets fans given the potential demand for their services in Queens...

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The Mets' top two prospects -- 1B Peter Alonso and SS Andres Gimenez -- are repping the team in the Arizona Fall League, the October-November league run by MLB featuring many of the top prospects in the game.

Alonso is expected to be promoted to the Mets at some point after next May, after which calls by fans for Gimenez will begin to grow in volume.

According to MLB.com, Gimenez is considered the Mets top' prospect, followed by Alonso, with both checking in on the site's Top 100 at No. 55 and No. 58 respectively...

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Jul 15, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; USA infielder Peter Alonso (34) hits a two run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)
Jul 15, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; USA infielder Peter Alonso (34) hits a two run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)

Top Mets prospect Peter Alonso homered in the Arizona Fall Leauge on Tuesday night while playing for the Scottsdale Scorpions. It was his second homer in six AFL games.

Alonso, the 58th-best prospect in baseball according to MLB.com, also doubled in a run and drew a walk on Tuesday night as he went 2-for-3 with two runs scored.  

Overall in the AFL he is hitting .435/.500/1.283 with two homers, two doubles, three walks, two stolen bases, and five strikeouts.

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Jun 23, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; A general view of the field prior to the game between the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Jun 23, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; A general view of the field prior to the game between the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets have interviewed more than the five candidates known in the first round of their search for a new head of baseball operations, and plan to speak to one or two more before determining finalists, according to major league sources.

The team is being extremely secretive about this initial phase of the process, refusing to confirm or deny that they spoke with any individuals. But according to other league sources, the known list of Kim Ng, Gary LaRocque, Chaim Bloom, De Jon Watson and Doug Melvin is incomplete.

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The Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs will become the Triple-A Syracuse Mets starting in 2019, it was announced Tuesday at NBT Bank Stadium in Syracuse, New York. 

New home and road uniforms were unveiled along with the new primary logo that features the words "Syracuse Mets" emblazoned over the State of New York. The team will wear a new "S" in a nostalgic font on their hats.The Mets announced the purchase of the Syracuse affiliate last October, setting in motion the Mets' Triple-A team relocating from Las Vegas to Syracuse for the start of the 2019 season. 

In addition to the name-change, new uniforms, and improvements and upgrades being made to NBT Bank Stadium, it was announced by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo that the Mets and Onondaga County are close to finalizing a lease extension that will keep professional baseball in Syracuse for the next 25 years. Check out the new uniforms and stadiun upgrade plans below...

 

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It has become an annual tradition here to write about how the Mets must improve their bullpen during the offseason. For what it's worth, this same article is often written about most teams in baseball. It's hardly exclusive for the Mets. Nevertheless, nearly every winter and trade deadline for the past decade we all push our respective teams to add relievers...

The thing is, this cycle is in constant replay because bullpens are notorious for being inconsistent and rarely do what is expected of them when on paper the previous winter.

For instance, while it's easy to forget given how the staff performed for much of the spring and early summer, the Mets were considered to have a pretty good bullpen entering 2018. MLB.com went so far as to rank them as the fifth-best bullpen in the National League prior to the start of the season. The opposite occurred, though, with the Mets finishing this past season with the second-worst bullpen...

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Tom Seaver speaks during a ceremony for Members of the 1969 New York Mets baseball team before the Mets play the Phillies Saturday, Aug. 22, 2009,  in New York.  (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Tom Seaver speaks during a ceremony for Members of the 1969 New York Mets baseball team before the Mets play the Phillies Saturday, Aug. 22, 2009, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

The Mets beat the Orioles, 5-3, at Shea Stadium on today's date in 1969 to win their first World Series title when the final out was squeezed by Cleon Jones in left field after a drive off the bat of Davey Johnson

The Miracle Mets, with a starting rotation anchored by Tom Seaver and Jerry Kossman, had never won more than 73 games during the first seven years of their existence. Then 1969 happened, when they overtook the Cubs late in the season and won the NL East. After a 100-win regular season, the Mets swept the Braves in the best-of-five NLCS. 

The Orioles were heavily favored in the World Series, but after losing Game 1 in Baltimore, the Mets reeled off four straight wins to hoist the trophy... after some absoloute bedlam on the field. Click below to see...

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Apr 5, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view as the sun sets over Citi Field during the second inning between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 5, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view as the sun sets over Citi Field during the second inning between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

A week into the Mets' process of interviewing for Sandy Alderson's replacement as the head of baseball operations, there truly seems to be no frontrunner. The Mets are considering candidates with backgrounds as disparate as Gary LaRocque and Chaim Bloom, and are still weighing which direction to go.

You can find people in the organization advocating for a more traditional approach, and those who are more enthusiastic about analytics. Others are moderates on this issue. Therefore, the only credible answer to the question of what the team is going to do is "not sure yet, because they're not, either."

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Mets C Travis D'Arnaud had Tommy John surgery this past April, which means the starting catcher job in 2019 is now wide open.

D'Arnaud, who will be 30 years next February, is expected to be out through the first few months of next season. He's also eligible for arbitration this winter and could end up earning as much as $4 million next season, after which he can be a free agent for the first time in his career.

My hunch is the Mets will cut d'Arnaud loose and use the saved money to hopefully help in acquiring a more -productive, proven, everyday starting catcher. Even if cut, I expect d'Arnaud will sign a lesser deal to remain with the Mets, with whom he can continue his rehab with trainers that know in St. Lucie.

Tags: Kevin Plawecki, Travis d'Arnaud, Matthew Cerrone
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Mets legend and current SNY announcer Keith Hernandez will headline the 2019 Queens Baseball Convention (QBC), it was announced Monday.

Hernandez will take part in an hour-long panel discussion that will include questions from attendees, and will be taking part in an autograph session.

The fan-run QBC, presented by SNY, is taking place on January 19, 2019 at Katch Astoria. 

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Cleveland Indians General Manager Mike Chernoff answers a question at an Indians end of season news conference in Cleveland, Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (AP Photo/Phil Long) (Phil Long/AP)
Cleveland Indians General Manager Mike Chernoff answers a question at an Indians end of season news conference in Cleveland, Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (AP Photo/Phil Long) (Phil Long/AP)

Indians GM Mike Chernoff, who the Mets have interest in for their top baseball operations job, is now viewed as being less likely to interview, league sources told SNY's Andy Martino. 

Chernoff, 37, has worked in Cleveland with former team president and current Toronto Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro, and current Indians president Chris Antonetti. Both are close with Omar Minaya. Chernoff is the son of Mark Chernoff, VP of programming for WFAN.

This first round of "interviews" has taken many forms -- from sit-downs in New York to informal telephone conversations, notes Martino.

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Jul 15, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; USA infielder Peter Alonso (34) hits a two run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)
Jul 15, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; USA infielder Peter Alonso (34) hits a two run home run in seventh inning against the World Team during the 2018 All Star Futures Game at Nationals Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)

Every Sunday, we'll be taking a look at how notable Mets prospects are faring in the Arizona Fall League. The AFL features some of the best prospects in baseball and its regular season runs through Nov. 15. The Championship Game is Nov. 17. 


Peter Alonso, 1B

The 23-year-old Alonso, the No. 58 prospect in baseball according to MLB.com, has played four games and is hitting .500 with one homer and one double -- good for a 1.306 OPS in 16 at-bats.

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Oct 17, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; A general view during the playing of the national anthem before game one of the NLCS between the Chicago Cubs and the New York Mets at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 17, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; A general view during the playing of the national anthem before game one of the NLCS between the Chicago Cubs and the New York Mets at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Mets continue to search for their new head of baseball operations or GM to replace Sandy Alderson, and though it is the early stages, the candidate list is starting to fill out. 

New York has already spoken to a few potential baseball execs, with SNY's Andy Martino saying "sit-downs in New York to informal telephone conversations" have made up the first rounds of the search. Their candidate list is wide-ranging as well. 

Here's a look at where things stand in the search so far, and which candidates are at the top of the heap...

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Sep 26, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) pitches against the Atlanta Braves during the seventh inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports  (Brad Penner)
Sep 26, 2018; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) pitches against the Atlanta Braves during the seventh inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

A look at where Mets ace Jacob deGrom's dominant season ranks in the top 10 of the last 50 years.

Tags: Jacob deGrom
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Apr 3, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view of fans outside Citi Field before a game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 3, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view of fans outside Citi Field before a game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Here are the key 2018 MLB offseason dates, and how they impact the Mets...


Day after World Series ends (Between Oct. 28 and Nov. 1) : Free agency begins

The Mets should be making their GM hire right around the time free agency begins, meaning immediate pressure on whoever gets the gig to come up with a plan and start executing it. Outfielder Bryce Harper and shortstop/third baseman Manny Machado headline the free agent class. The Mets may look for a new catcher, and Yasmani Grandal and Wilson Ramos will both be available. Among the top tier starting pitchers available are Patrick Corbin and Dallas Keuchel. When it comes to relievers, Craig Kimbrel, Adam Ottavino, and old friend Jeurys Familia are among the headliners.

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On the latest episode of Shea Anything, Doug Williams and Andy Martino are joined by former New York Mets catcher Anthony Recker! They discuss the dominance of Jacob deGrom, what deGrom is like behind the scenes, and what it's like to catch all the hard-throwing starting pitchers in the Mets rotation. The guys also chat about David Wright, and the potential role he could have in a future Mets front office.  

Don't forget - we want hear from you! Go to SNY.tv/SheaAnything and upload a video or audio clip of your take on the Mets. Keep it to 30 seconds or less, make it good, and you may be on the show!

CLICK BELOW TO LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

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The way I've heard it, the Mets hiring a new GM and front office personnel is not being done in preparation of the team ripping down the roster and going through another rebuild. Instead, the goal is to install people with experience winning so they can build on what exists and and get the Mets back to the World Series sooner than later.

If that's the case, the answer to the question in the headline is simple...

To best way for the team to gain trust and show full-force commitment to winning is to sign free-agent-to-be Manny Machado...

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Top Mets prospects Peter Alonso and Andres Gimenez both homered in the Arizona Fall Leauge on Wednesday night while playing for the Scottsdale Scorpions.

Alonso, the No. 58 prospect in baseball according to MLB.com, finished a triple shy of the cycle. He had an infield single in the first inning, doubled to left in the third, homered to left in the sixth, and walked in the eighth. The 23-year-old went 2-for-4 on Tuesday in what was his first game with Scottsdale. 

After doing work on Wednesday, Alonso took time out to meet some of his smallest fans... 

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Dominic Smith (22) Mandatory Credit: Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports (Gregory Fisher)
Dominic Smith (22) Mandatory Credit: Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports (Gregory Fisher)

Players in a local softball league game at DeWitt Clinton Park in Manhattan were greeted by a surprise guest on Tuesday night:  Dom Smith.

The 23-year-old Smith met the players, signed autographs, took photos, and even had pinch-hit in the softball game, reports Anthony DiComo of MLB.com. 

Click below to see...

Tags: Dominic Smith
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Cleveland Indians General Manager Mike Chernoff answers a question at an Indians end of season news conference in Cleveland, Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (AP Photo/Phil Long) (Phil Long/AP)
Cleveland Indians General Manager Mike Chernoff answers a question at an Indians end of season news conference in Cleveland, Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (AP Photo/Phil Long) (Phil Long/AP)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter | As the Mets continue to speak with people about replacing Sandy Alderson as head of baseball operations -- some in person this week in New York, and some less formally -- multiple major league sources said that Cleveland GM Mike Chernoff is among the candidates.

Chernoff, 37, has worked in Cleveland with former team president, and current Toronto Blue Jays president, Mark Shapiro, and current Indians president Chris Antonetti. Both are close with Omar Minaya. Chernoff is the son of Mark Chernoff, VP of programming for WFAN.

This first round of "interviews" has taken many forms, from sit-downs in New York to informal telephone conversations. Mets brass has been very active in pursuing conversations with many people in the game, soliciting thoughts about their direction.

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BNNY interviews for Mets GM 00:06:49
Doug Williams and Jim Duquette interview Sal Licata and Jon Hein for Mets GM, to see if their visions are the right ones for the Mets

The Mets have been actively seeking a new GM to take over for next season and beyond, and the "Baseball Night in New York" crew wanted to take their shot at winning the job. 

Sal Licata and Jon Hein met with Doug Williams and former Mets GM Jim Duquette to discuss what they believe is the path the Mets must take to return to a championship contender....

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Aug 18, 2018; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets first baseman Wilmer Flores (4) puts the ball in New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) glove after the last out in the ninth inning of the game at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports (Gregory Fisher)
Aug 18, 2018; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets first baseman Wilmer Flores (4) puts the ball in New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom (48) glove after the last out in the ninth inning of the game at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports (Gregory Fisher)

The Mets have nine arbitration-eligible players this offseason. Six of them are locks to be offered arbitration, and three of them have a more uncertain Mets future.

According to MLB Trade Rumors, here's what they're projected to make if offered arbitration, and what the rest of their contract situation is. We'll first tackle the locks to be offered arbitration, followed by the question marks...

Locks

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Feb 14, 2018; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; A general view of a New York Mets hat and glove on the grass during a workout at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Feb 14, 2018; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; A general view of a New York Mets hat and glove on the grass during a workout at First Data Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets will begin interviewing candidates to succeed Sandy Alderson as head of baseball operations early next week, according to a major league source. The team has received permission to speak to enough candidates to begin the process.

COO Jeff Wilpon and assistant GM John Ricco will conduct the first round of interviews.

As of late Thursday, the only interview scheduled was with Cardinals executive Gary LaRocque. Former Brewers GM Doug Melvin will also get an interview.

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