Mets' Reynolds, Nimmo named to AFL Fall Stars roster

Rosters for annual AFL event include 14 prospects from Top 100 rankings

Mets' Reynolds, Nimmo named to AFL Fall Stars roster

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Make way for the next generation.

Several of the best prospects in baseball will collide on Saturday in the ninth annual Fall Stars Game, the yearly All-Star Game for the Arizona Fall League. This year's rosters feature 14 players on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 Prospects list.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Nimmo headlines talented Mets AFL class

New York's No. 3 prospect looking to improve consistency with Scottsdale

Nimmo headlines talented Mets AFL class

A raw talent coming out of high school in Wyoming, outfielder Brandon Nimmo has worked hard to refine his game since the Mets made him the 13th overall pick of the 2011 First-Year Player Draft. That effort was rewarded this season, as his potential was transformed into results and he reached Double-A Binghamton in the second half.

Nimmo, the Mets' No. 3 prospect, is continuing that work in the Arizona Fall League, where he is one of seven Mets playing for Scottsdale. The 21-year-old said he is enjoying the opportunity to play in the elite developmental league and is eager to build on the progress he made this year.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets announce 2015 Spring Training schedule

New York's home opener at Tradition Field set for March 6 vs. Detroit

The Mets' 2015 Spring Training schedule will include 33 games -- and 15 at Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie -- between March 4 and April 4.

New York will open against the Braves in Orlando before its home opener on March 6 (1:10 p.m. ET) against the defending American League Central champion Tigers. The Mets will host the Yankees on March 22, and they will travel to Tampa to take on the Bronx Bombers on March 25.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Familia undergoes successful sports hernia surgery

Familia undergoes successful sports hernia surgery

SAN FRANCISCO -- Mets reliever Jeurys Familia underwent successful surgery Friday to repair bilateral sports hernias, the team announced. Familia was already on his way home to the Dominican Republic at the time of the announcement.

The Mets' most consistent reliever over the course of the summer, Familia posted a 2.21 ERA in 76 appearances this year, striking out 73 batters over 77 1/3 innings. Those numbers could garner him some outside National League Rookie of the Year consideration.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets tab Long as hitting coach

Mets tab Long as hitting coach

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Mets did not need to look far to find their new hitting coach, taking him from just across town.

The team on Thursday announced that recently dismissed Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long will fill that role for them in 2015. Long replaces Lamar Johnson, who took over when the Mets dismissed Dave Hudgens in May.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Lagares named finalist for Gold Glove Award

Center fielder praised for defensive prowess in second Major League season

Lagares named finalist for Gold Glove Award

SAN FRANCISCO -- Juan Lagares had already established himself as one of the finest defensive center fielders in baseball last year when Rawlings released its Gold Glove finalists. Yet despite some eye-popping traditional and sabermetric numbers, Lagares was not among them.

No such snub has taken place in 2014. Lagares is the Mets' lone Gold Glove candidate, and he has a strong chance to win the award, which Rawlings will announce on Tuesday, Nov. 4, on ESPN2 at 7 p.m. ET.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Sporting News gives deGrom top rookie honors

Mets right-hander voted best in NL after standout year

Sporting News gives deGrom top rookie honors

Mets standout Jacob deGrom has been named the National League Rookie of the Year by Sporting News magazine, with the hope of adding the BBWAA's award to his mantel in the coming weeks.

deGrom's contributions this season were unexpected if not invaluable. The right-hander had an ERA of 4.80 in Double-A and 4.52 in Triple-A last year before bursting onto the scene in 2014 to go 9-6 with a 2.69 ERA over 22 starts with the Mets.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets' Mazzilli motors around basepaths at AFL

Second baseman triples, notches two runs for Scottsdale Scorpions

Mets' Mazzilli motors around basepaths at AFL

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Some players swing hard enough to watch the ball take flight. And others know they'd better run as hard as they can. L.J. Mazzilli proved that he was proud to be in that latter class Monday night, when he tripled and scored two runs in Scottsdale's 7-3 victory over Glendale.

Mazzilli, a second baseman in the Mets organization, helped spark his Arizona Fall League team to victory by crushing a triple into the gap in the second inning. He scampered home on a passed ball that inning, and later walked, stole a base and scored on catcher Elias Diaz's triple.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Strong crop of shortstop prospects on display at instructs

Cecchini, Ramos among those offering New York bright future in position that's plagued them

Strong crop of shortstop prospects on display at instructs

While shortstop has been an unsettled spot in the Mets' lineup in recent years, the club is amassing remarkable depth at the position in the Minor Leagues.

Some of the Mets wealth of young shortstops gathered in St. Lucie, Fla., for instructional league this fall, giving coaches and executives an extended opportunity to watch them all work. Among the group were Amed Rosario, Gavin Cecchini and Milton Ramos, the Mets' Nos. 6, 10 and 11 prospects. All three have joined the organization in the last 27 months and spent the season in the low levels of the Minor Leagues.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Work begins on right-center-field fence at Citi Field

Mets plan to draw in the fence in front of both bullpens

Work begins on right-center-field fence at Citi Field

SAN FRANCISCO -- Construction is underway to move portions of Citi Field's outfield fence closer to home plate for the second time in three years.

The Mets on Wednesday released pictures of their initial stages of fence reconstruction, revealing a modified wall in right-center field. A team official said right-center is the only part of Citi Field that the Mets plan to alter; they will release exact dimensions at a later date. General manager Sandy Alderson did not respond to a message seeking comment.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

Defensive-minded den Dekker an able fourth outfielder

Glove, wheels can help prospect stay in mix with Mets

Defensive-minded den Dekker an able fourth outfielder

New York Mets outfield prospect Matt den Dekker finished the season playing 53 games and getting 152 at-bats for the parent club. He hit a respectable .250 with no home runs and seven RBIs. While den Dekker's offensive contribution will be important to him and the Mets going forward, his outstanding Gold Glove Award-caliber defense and above-average speed can be very useful tools on a roster balanced with outfielders who hit for more power.

The left-handed den Dekker, now 27, has been in the Mets organization since being selected in the fifth round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets' throwbacks predicted World Series matchup

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Mets' throwbacks predicted World Series matchup

Look at that photo! That picture, taken during the June 28 Mets-Pirates matchup, appears to show New York outfielder Eric Young Jr. wearing a jersey emblazoned with the names of the 2014 World Series participants: the Royals and the Giants. Clearly, this is the work of some Photoshop prankster operating deep in the netherworld of the internet, right?

Wrong. Not only is that photo real, but it happens to be really, really cool. Check your sundials: it's story time.

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Prospect Reynolds goes yard in extras in AFL game

Shortstop, ranked 20th in organization, goes yard in 10th to lift Scottsdale

Prospect Reynolds goes yard in extras in AFL game

With one on and two outs in the top of the 10th inning Saturday, Matt Reynolds came to the plate to face right-hander Ben Klimesh. Scottsdale and Surprise had been deadlocked at five since the seventh inning and it looked like they would remain that way going to the bottom of the 10th, as Klimesh started Reynolds off with two strikes.

Klimesh's next pitch caught too much of the plate, however, and Reynolds turned on it, driving it over the left-field wall for a two-run home run. Scottsdale held on in the bottom of the inning and defeated Surprise, 7-6. The loss snapped the Saguaros' three-game winning streak.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Kiner among 10 finalists for '15 Frick Award

Kiner among 10 finalists for '15 Frick Award

The list of 2015 Ford C. Frick Award finalists has been narrowed to 10, with the winner set to be announced on Dec. 10 at the Winter Meetings.

The finalists are Richie Ashburn, Billy Berroa, Rene Cardenas, Dizzy Dean, Dick Enberg, Ernie Johnson Sr., Ralph Kiner, Ned Martin, Joe Nuxhall and Jack Quinlan. The award is presented annually "for excellence in baseball broadcasting" by the Hall of Fame.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets to replace hitting coaches Johnson, Natera

Barwis in as new strength and conditioning coach

Mets to replace hitting coaches Johnson, Natera

Disgruntled enough with the state of their offense to change hitting coaches in May, the Mets are once again undergoing a coaching shakeup. The team announced Thursday that it does not plan to invite replacement hitting coach Lamar Johnson or assistant Luis Natera back for 2015, though it will offer both men positions within the Minor League system.

"We appreciate the hard work of Lamar and Luis this year at the Major League level," general manager Sandy Alderson said in a statement. "We hope they will continue to be part of the Mets organization in the future."

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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d'Arnaud undergoes successful elbow surgery

Mets closer Mejia also slated for procedure to fix sports hernia

d'Arnaud undergoes successful elbow surgery

WASHINGTON -- Mets catcher Travis d'Arnaud on Wednesday underwent successful surgery to remove a bone chip that broke off in his right elbow. D'Arnaud anticipates an approximately one-month recovery, putting him on track to be ready well before Opening Day in 2015.

Though d'Arnaud has not admitted publicly how long he had been playing through discomfort in his elbow, he said the pain became acute while making a throw to second base in a Sept. 23 game against the Nationals. The rookie catcher finished that game on the field, but he did not appear in another game this season. The Mets hope d'Arnaud's injury was at the root of his defensive inconsistencies down the stretch.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Stars of tomorrow ready to shine as '14 AFL season begins

Stars of tomorrow ready to shine as '14 AFL season begins

Over its 23-year history, the Arizona Fall League has developed a reputation as a finishing school for baseball's top prospects. This year, once again, many of the game's best young players will gather in the desert, hoping to prove themselves in the same league that helped catapult Derek Jeter, Dustin Pedroia and Mike Trout to stardom.

When the AFL opens play Tuesday, the concentration of talent will again be readily apparent. Two of the three Opening Day games feature premium pitching matchups, and the third game is highlighted by two of the best shortstops in the Minor Leagues.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Rookie arms dazzled, but Mets fell short of goals in '14

With Harvey out, deGrom, Familia buoyed staff, though lineup was inconsistent

Rookie arms dazzled, but Mets fell short of goals in '14

NEW YORK -- From the moment Matt Harvey decided to undergo Tommy John surgery last October, a bit of optimism leaked out of the Mets' 2014 season. The Mets still hoped to compete for their first playoff berth in eight years and genuinely believed they could achieve that -- that's why general manager Sandy Alderson originally brought up the topic of 90 wins as a benchmark. But the Mets knew that without Harvey, their road would be much more difficult.

"It really wasn't a prediction," Alderson said of his 90-win dream. "It was about thinking differently. If you're going to set a goal, you need to set a goal that you can't just achieve easily. You have to set a goal that's aspirational. We [didn't] get there, but you know what? We played a lot better this year than we did last year. There's no reason that next year, we can't do it."

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Strong finish nets deGrom NL Rookie of Month honors

Strong finish nets deGrom NL Rookie of Month honors

NEW YORK -- As perhaps a prelude to a National League Rookie of the Year Award, Mets starter Jacob deGrom on Tuesday was named the NL's Rookie of the Month for September. It was the second Rookie of the Month honor this season for deGrom, who also won it in July.

Despite skipping his final start due to an innings limit, deGrom posted a 2-0 record and 1.67 ERA in September, striking out 38 batters against six walks in 27 innings. Opponents hit .189 against him in the month.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets' 2015 plan includes small but impactful changes

NY believes top-notch rotation, led by Harvey, will carry team to contention

Mets' 2015 plan includes small but impactful changes

NEW YORK -- The Mets have no grand plans to change much over the winter. When pitchers and catchers report to Port St. Lucie, Fla., four and a half months from now, the roster will not look markedly different from the one that populated Citi Field last Sunday.

But the Mets have reason to believe that with even modest improvements, they can be significantly better. The team expects more productive seasons from third baseman David Wright and outfielder Curtis Granderson, to say the least, and anticipates a boost from starting pitcher Matt Harvey in his first year back from Tommy John surgery. By boasting one of the top rotations in baseball, the Mets believe, they can transform an average club into a playoff contender.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Mets close season optimistic for next year

Duda drives in four, Colon wins 15th as NY finishes second in NL East

Mets close season optimistic for next year

NEW YORK -- During the ninth inning of the Mets' season-ending 8-3 win over the Astros on Sunday, moments before they officially earned their first second-place finish since 2008, Matt Harvey shuffled over to Terry Collins in Citi Field's home dugout. The embodiment of why this season went awry for the Mets, Harvey looked his manager in the eyes.

"We're going to do it next year," he said.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Abreu exits to ovation, savors last moments in uniform

Veteran, retiring after 18 seasons, singles in his final at-bat Sunday

Abreu exits to ovation, savors last moments in uniform

NEW YORK -- It was a moment 18 years and 2,425 games in the making.

In the fifth inning Sunday afternoon at Citi Field, with a line-drive single to left, Bobby Abreu recorded his 2,470th and final big league hit. He waved his batting helmet to acknowledge a standing ovation from the fans at Citi Field and received the ball he hit before departing for pinch-runner Eric Young Jr., bringing an end to a Major League career spanning nearly two decades.

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Tim Healey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Duda caps breakout year with 30th home run

First baseman became backbone of lineup, posting career highs in hits, RBIs, average

Duda caps breakout year with 30th home run

NEW YORK -- When the Mets traded first baseman Ike Davis to the Pirates in mid-April, the move was as much about letting go of their struggling slugger as it was anticipating his replacement. Sunday afternoon that replacement-turned-mainstay, Lucas Duda, punctuated the end of the season with the trusted power he had provided all season.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, Duda walloped a changeup from Michael Foltynewicz into the right-center-field bullpen, his 30th home run of the season, to score Daniel Murphy and solidify the Mets' 8-3 victory over the Astros. That capped off a two-hit day that included a two-run double in the fifth, giving him 92 RBIs for the year.

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Jake Kring-Schreifels is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Colon posts 15th win, reaches 200 innings in Game 162

Alderson indicates that coaching changes are unlikely, right-field wall may be moved

Colon posts 15th win, reaches 200 innings in Game 162

NEW YORK -- In the hours prior to Sunday's season finale at Citi Field, Astros second baseman Jose Altuve delivered a gift to Bartolo Colon: a signed bat, featuring an inscription in Spanish. The token of goodwill perhaps bought Altuve some karma; he finished 2-for-4 against Colon to become Houston's first ever batting champion.

Colon, for his part, completed his eighth season of at least 200 innings and his eighth with at least 15 wins. He did it all at age 41.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Worth the wait: Duda's walk-off HR in ninth lifts Mets

First baseman delievers two-out, two-run shot, ends Astros' shutout bid

Worth the wait: Duda's walk-off HR in ninth lifts Mets

NEW YORK -- During the postgame hoopla Saturday night at Citi Field, amidst the celebratory scrum at home plate and Lucas Duda's ice-water bath and high-fives a tad more emphatic than normal following the Mets' 2-1, walk-off win over the Astros, David Wright ran into Mets manager Terry Collins.

The third baseman noted that this moment -- seeing Duda smile wide by the time he touched first base and toss his helmet between third and home -- was the most fun he's had in a while.

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Tim Healey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Niese exits final start with elevated heart rate

Niese exits final start with elevated heart rate

NEW YORK -- An old issue, once brushed aside but never completely forgotten, forced a premature end to Mets starter Jon Niese's season. Niese left Friday's game against the Astros in the sixth inning with an elevated heart rate, which has affected him in the past.

Pitching in the sixth inning at Citi Field, Niese gave up a leadoff single on an 86-mph cut fastball to Gregorio Petit, who was cut down stealing second on the next pitch. Niese appeared to grimace on that offering, leaving the game after a brief consultation with trainer Ray Ramirez.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Durable, reliable Abreu decides to retire after 18 seasons

Durable, reliable Abreu decides to retire after 18 seasons

NEW YORK -- Standing at the end of a borderline Hall of Fame career arc, Bobby Abreu walked into Mets manager Terry Collins' office recently and relayed his intentions to retire after this season.

"Are you sure?" asked Collins, Abreu's first and final big league manager. "You have to be sure. You have to be 100-percent sure that enough's enough, because there's going to be a time when you're going to miss it."

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Struggling to find form, Gee ends 'frustrating' season

Struggling to find form, Gee ends 'frustrating' season

WASHINGTON -- On May 10, Dillon Gee was 3-1 with a 2.73 ERA, cruising to what Mets manager Terry Collins figured would easily become a 15-win season. But Gee began experiencing shoulder soreness after his outing that day, landed on the disabled list and ultimately missed two months.

When he returned, he was not the same pitcher, going 3-7 with a 5.10 ERA over his final 13 starts. The last of those came Thursday at Nationals Park, when Gee allowed four runs in five innings of a no-decision in the Mets' 7-4 win to cap what he called a "frustrating" season.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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Burkhardt signs off for last time on Mets coverage

Burkhardt signs off for last time on Mets coverage

WASHINGTON -- The accolades have always belonged to Gary Cohen, Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling, who have highlighted SNY's Mets coverage since 2006. But ask any of them about that success and they will inevitably mention Kevin Burkhardt, the broadcast's field reporter since 2007.

For the final time on Thursday, Burkhardt wrapped up his reporting and tossed things back up to Cohen in the booth. After eight seasons at SNY, Burkhardt is shifting his focus to a full-time national role covering football and baseball for FOX.

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Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDicomo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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