I know, the Mets haven’t even had their first Grapefruit League game yet, and there are already trade rumors circulating about Justin Turner. Adam Rubin does a good job of summarizing why the Mets would have some interest in dealing the backup infielder. It turns out New York won’t be actively shopping Turner to other teams, but will listen to offers if approached by one.
Even though camp just started, there is going to be an issue for the Mets when it comes to narrowing down the 40-man roster by the end of Spring, especially if relievers like Scott Atchison, LaTroy Hawkins, and Pedro Feliciano all pitch well enough to earn a spot in the bullpen. Rubin notes that with Brandon Hicks and Omar Quintanilla both in PSL as well, it could leave Turner on the outside looking in. He does have one option left, which means he could start the season in Triple-A, but that remains to be seen. I understand the roster crunch that could be happening, but I would hate to see Turner head out of town; he is a clutch hitter that Terry Collins could use in the late innings, and he brings a lot of personality into the clubhouse that shouldn’t be overlooked. Collins is a big supporter of Turner, so that could help in having him stick around.
The biggest news to come out of camp yesterday was Daniel Murphy heading to New York to get examined for his strained intercostal muscle. From the reports that have surfaced, it doesn’t look like this injury should be one that keeps Murphy sidelined for very long, as the organization is trying to be proactive in keeping their second baseman healthy. Let’s cross our fingers that they’re right and it’s not serious, and we’ll see Murph get back on the field either at the end of this week or start of next week.
We’re just a few days away from watching the Mets take the field in a game situation for the first time, and Danny Abriano summarized the news and notes coming out of camp yesterday. The pitching rotation for the first few games (which start this Friday with an intersquad game) was released, Jenrry Mejia may get his VISA issues handled soon and report to camp, and Terry Collins is officially going to start the process of making David Wright the fourth captain in Mets history (after Gary Carter, Keith Hernandez, and John Franco).
Meanwhile, Sandy Alderson officially rejected Johan Santana‘s request to participate in the World Baseball Classic, and Collins gave the team a pep talk with regard to this season. My favorite quote is below:
“Just because we don’t have fifteen $20 million-a-year players sitting out there in that audience doesn’t mean this is not a good team. But it’s up to you guys. We’ve got to work harder. We’ve got to play harder. We’ve got to play better. And then go compete. If you execute and compete the right way, who knows what the outcome will be?”
Very true; championships aren’t won in the off-season…they’re won on the field. Now, it’s up to the players to work hard in order to prove everyone wrong.
Also on Rising Apple yesterday, Danny Abriano took a look at how possible it is for the Mets to go after Alfonso Soriano for their outfield, while I talked about how I see Chad Bradford-like tendencies in reliever Greg Burke. Will DeBoer gave us his latest installment of Glory Days, as he shined the spotlight on Bob Friend, and Dan Haefeli shows that some external options remaining for the outfield (i.e. Brennan Boesch) may not be as good as what they already have in camp.