Andy Martino

Andy Martino is SNY's MLB insider.

 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

After Game 1 of last year's division series loss to Boston, Aaron Boone had some cleaning up to do with his starting pitcher.

J.A. Happ, who had been removed with no outs in the third inning, was in Boone's office, and he was angry. He felt he should have had the chance to turn his performance around and save the bullpen.

But as Happ sat in a chair in the tiny room at Fenway, Boone and pitching coach Larry Rothschild calmly explained their rationale: They had a strong relief corps, were unwilling to let the game get away from them, and preferred other matchups in that inning. Happ left the office satisfied, and appreciative of the open exchange.

Tags: CC Sabathia, Chad Green, Domingo German, J.A. Happ, Luis Severino, Wilson Ramos, Andy Martino
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Noah Syndergaard
Noah Syndergaard

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Standing next to Noah Syndergaard on Tuesday afternoon, you noticed his downcast eyes and slow, careful tone. He was trying to parse questions about his relationship with the Mets organization and he just looked...exhausted.

Come to think of it, we're all fairly beaten down by now by the trickle of news about unpleasant moments between the team and a player who was once its most marketable star.

Tags: Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Rene Rivera, Wilson Ramos, Andy Martino
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Trenton Thunder pitcher Deivi Garcia throws a pitch during a game against the Hartford Yard Goats at Dunkin' Donuts Park. (Matt Eisenberg/SNY)
Trenton Thunder pitcher Deivi Garcia throws a pitch during a game against the Hartford Yard Goats at Dunkin' Donuts Park. (Matt Eisenberg/SNY)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

On July 12, Yankees GM Brian Cashman told our pal Jim Duquette on Jim's Sirius/XM radio show that top prospect Deivi Garcia was "putting himself in the mix" to help the team this year.

When Cashman made that comment, Garcia had just pitched a scoreless first inning in the Futures Game and earned a promotion to Triple-A. The notion that he could emerge as a 20-year-old phenom and contribute to a World Series run tantalized both the team and its fans.

But in reality, player development is usually a slower burn. The Yankees still see a bright future for Garcia -- their refusal in July to trade him for Zack Wheeler, Marcus Stroman and others is proof of that --  but the righty's numbers for Scranton hardly screamed for an immediate callup: In 40 innings as both a starter and reliever, Garcia was 1-3 with a 5.40 ERA and 45 strikeouts against 20 walks.

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Brodie Van Wagenen
Brodie Van Wagenen

Late last week, when we reported that the Mets had let go of three respected scouts in addition to pro scouting director Jim D'Aloia, much of the public reaction had to do with complaints about the team's farm system and player development.

On this week's Shea Anything podcast, former Mets and Braves executive Adam Fisher spent a moment explaining why that was a misperception. It seems to me worth further elaboration on why the Mets' firings had little to do with their farm system.

This is inside baseball stuff that the average fan can be excused for not knowing. But in this case, it's useful in understanding what the Mets' recent shakeup does and does not mean.

Tags: Amed Rosario, Jeff McNeil, Pete Alonso, Andy Martino
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Justin Wilson (Adam Hunger)
Justin Wilson (Adam Hunger)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

When Steven Matz noticed Mickey Callaway striding towards him with two on and one out in the seventh inning on Tuesday night, the lefty shook his head and cursed. His reaction was a reasonable one: The last time Callaway removed Matz from a tight game, Seth Lugo blew a lead against the Braves.

This time, of course, proved to be different. Lefty Justin Wilson pounded his cutter in on switch hitter Francisco Lindor, who was batting right-handed, and Oscar Mercado -- another righty. He struck out both.

Wilson has lately proven to be a strong offseason signing by new GM Brodie Van Wagenen -- and a major part of the team's surprising bullpen resurgence. While still shaky in spots, the Mets' pen has progressed from terrifying to stable. Or at least stable-ish. However one chooses to describe it, the facts show tangible improvements since June.

Tags: Edwin Diaz, Justin Wilson, Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo, Steven Matz, Andy Martino
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Jul 26, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets left fielder Jeff McNeil (6) celebrates in the dugout after hitting a home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the third inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Jul 26, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets left fielder Jeff McNeil (6) celebrates in the dugout after hitting a home run against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the third inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

If you've been following the Mets this year, you know that they've become highly reluctant to publicize estimated timetables on when injured players will return.

That said, we hear that Jeff McNeil, eligible to come off the injured list Aug. 24, might need to play in minor league rebab games before he returns. The team has not yet determined a schedule for those games, but it seems they could push back his return just a bit.

Still, the news on McNeil has been positive since an MRI revealed that his hamstring strain was "mild."

Tags: Jeff McNeil, Andy Martino
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Aaron Judge left the batters box Thursday night in the first, seventh and ninth innings under identical circumstances: He'd been caught looking all three times as part of an 0-for-5 night.

In the first, umpire Tom Hallion made a pitcher-friendly call, ringing up Judge on a low fastball out of the strike zone. In the seventh Judge took slider in the middle of the zone. In the ninth, it was a fastball inside -- not technically a strike, but perhaps a bit too close to take on 3-2.

Over the past month, Judge's deep slump has been the lone drag on a Yankees offense that has otherwise rolled through the summer. He's the team's best player, but he's batting .148 over his past 21 games, and slugging .370 in the second half.

Tags: Aaron Judge, Andy Martino
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May 19, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees pitcher Chad Green (57) pitches in the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports (Wendell Cruz)
May 19, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees pitcher Chad Green (57) pitches in the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports (Wendell Cruz)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

With the Yankees rolling along toward a division title, fans are naturally turning their thoughts to the playoff rotation. This year, it's a particularly hot topic because the general manager declined to add to it at the trade deadline.

The Yankees insist, both publicly and in private, that they haven't begun to think in earnest about the playoff roster and rotation -- though we can report, as we did in June, that the team is eyeing a Chad Green/Luis Severino game, provided the latter is healthy.

Tags: Chad Green, Domingo German, James Paxton, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, Tommy Kahnle, Andy Martino
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Aug 5, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Edwin Diaz (39) reacts after defeating the Miami Marlins in game one of a doubleheader at CitiField. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Aug 5, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets relief pitcher Edwin Diaz (39) reacts after defeating the Miami Marlins in game one of a doubleheader at CitiField. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

With speculation ramping up that the Mets could or should option beleaguered reliever Edwin Diaz to the minor leagues, the team remains committed to working with Diaz with the big club, and does not intend to send him down at this time.

Diaz, the best closer in baseball last year, has effectively lost that job with the Mets. Mickey Callaway has been using Seth Lugo in higher-leverage spots.

Tags: Edwin Diaz, Andy Martino
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Jul 20, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants second baseman Joe Panik (12) hits an RBI single against the New York Mets in the fifth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports (John Hefti)
Jul 20, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants second baseman Joe Panik (12) hits an RBI single against the New York Mets in the fifth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports (John Hefti)

There is a strong chance that the Mets will sign second baseman Joe Panik once he clears waivers at 1 p.m. Friday, according to major league sources.

The Mets are not the only team interested in Panik, a former All-Star. He is expected to choose relatively quickly.

Panik, 28, is a product of Hopewell Junction, N.Y. and St. John's University. He is batting .235 this year, with a .627 OPS.

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Jul 20, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants second baseman Joe Panik (12) hits an RBI single against the New York Mets in the fifth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports (John Hefti)
Jul 20, 2019; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants second baseman Joe Panik (12) hits an RBI single against the New York Mets in the fifth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports (John Hefti)

Second baseman Joe Panik, recently designated for assignment by San Francisco, will become a free agent at 1 p.m. on Friday if he goes unclaimed by another team, according to a major league source.

The Mets, who have lost Robinson Cano for a significant period due to a torn hamstring, will have some interest in Panik if he becomes a free agent.

The St. John's product, 28, is batting .235 this year, with a .627 OPS.

Tags: Robinson Cano, Andy Martino
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Jul 7, 2019; Cumberland, GA, USA; Miami Marlins manager Don Mattingly (8) in the dugout against the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports (Adam Hagy)
Jul 7, 2019; Cumberland, GA, USA; Miami Marlins manager Don Mattingly (8) in the dugout against the Atlanta Braves at SunTrust Park. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports (Adam Hagy)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

As a kid in Rochester, N.Y., I'd beg my parents to take me to umpire Ken Kaiser's annual winter banquet. Kaiser, a local guy and longtime American League umpire, would somehow coax the biggest stars of the era to my frigid minor league city. Tickets were pricey, and attendance remained a dream for me over many years.

One time only, probably 1990 or '91 when I was 9 or 10, my dad agreed to take me as a Christmas present. We sat at a table near the back of the room, watching one marquee name after another step to the podium and give a brief speech: Dave Winfield, Roger Clemens, Roberto Alomar, Robin Ventura, Steve Sax and many more, including the main draw, Don Mattingly.

It's easy to forget, because of his injury-shortened career and the unlucky timing of playing between Yankee dynasties, that for a kid growing up during a certain sliver of the '80s, there was no bigger name than Mattingly. It wasn't just his ability to hit for power and average, but the moustache and the swag. Yankee fan or otherwise, everyone had a Mattingly poster on their bedroom wall.

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Jul 28, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; New York Yankees first baseman Luke Voit (45) throws his helmet after striking out during the fourth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports (Bob DeChiara)
Jul 28, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; New York Yankees first baseman Luke Voit (45) throws his helmet after striking out during the fourth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports (Bob DeChiara)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

In the first half of the 2009 season, Phillies left fielder Raul Ibanez was an MVP candidate, batting .312 in his first 285 plate appearances, with 22 home runs and a .968 OPS. Then he suffered a core injury that ended up being a sports hernia.

After a stint on the disabled list, Ibanez batted .232 in 285 plate appearances, with a .771 OPS and 12 home runs. He underwent offseason surgery, began swinging a bat again in January, and continued his slow recovery into the following season. Ibanez batted .243 in the first half of 2010, with a .723 OPS.

All of this is to say that the Yankees should be worried about Luke Voit (sports hernia) and to some extent Gleyber Torres (unspecified core issue). Even when players push through core injuries, as Torres did last night while going hitless in five at-bats and striking out twice, the discomfort can severely limit production.

Tags: Aaron Hicks, Giancarlo Stanton, Gleyber Torres, Luke Voit, Andy Martino
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May 31, 2019; Phoenix, AZ, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Camporeale)
May 31, 2019; Phoenix, AZ, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Camporeale)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Late into Monday night, teams pursuing starting pitching said that the Houston Astros were making a strong push to acquire a starting pitcher and pursuing Zack Wheeler. One rival executive predicted that Wheeler will be traded Tuesday, with the Astros as the destination.

"I fully expect the Astros to get Wheeler," said one rival GM. "And if they don't they'll just pivot to Bauer."

Other sources noted that Atlanta, Tampa Bay, Milwaukee and the Yankees were involved to varying degrees on both Wheeler, Noah Syndergaard and Edwin Diaz.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 29, 2019; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman (6) delivers a pitch against Kansas City Royals in the first inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports (Dan Hamilton)
Jun 29, 2019; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman (6) delivers a pitch against Kansas City Royals in the first inning at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports (Dan Hamilton)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Marcus Stroman-to-the-Mets trade was not at all surprising to those who have been following Brodie Van Wagenen's work since last winter. He has always been willing to simultaneously add to and subtract from the big league team, blurring the line between buying and selling.

In December, for example, he was trying to unload Noah Syndergaard as a way to acquire catcher J.T. Realmuto from Miami. Had that worked, Van Wagenen was looking into Cleveland ace Corey Kluber as a Syndergaard replacement.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jul 12, 2019; St. Louis, MO, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) pitches during the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Curry)
Jul 12, 2019; St. Louis, MO, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) pitches during the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Curry)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

In the Mets' wide-ranging search for trades that will help them fulfill GM Brodie Van Wagenen's mandate of winning "now and in the future," the team has engaged with the Arizona Diamondbacks on starter Robbie Ray, according to major league sources.

Ray, 27, is under control until 2021. He's 9-6 this season, with a 3.96 ERA.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Andy Martino
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Jul 12, 2019; St. Louis, MO, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) pitches during the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Curry)
Jul 12, 2019; St. Louis, MO, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) pitches during the second inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Curry)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

In the Mets' wide-ranging search for trades that will help them fulfill GM Brodie Van Wagenen's mandate of winning "now and in the future," the team has engaged with the Arizona Diamondbacks on starter Robbie Ray, according to major league sources.

Ray, 27, is under control until 2021. He's 9-6 this season, with a 3.96 ERA.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Andy Martino
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Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Despite all the talk about a Noah Syndergaard trade, the Mets remain more likely to move Zack Wheeler before the deadline, according to major league sources.



But Syndergaard is certainly available, in case a team wants to step up and blow the Mets away.



What would that look like?

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Andy Martino
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Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Despite all the talk about a Noah Syndergaard trade, the Mets remain more likely to move Zack Wheeler before the deadline, according to major league sources.



But Syndergaard is certainly available, in case a team wants to step up and blow the Mets away.



What would that look like?

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Andy Martino
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New York Mets relief pitcher Edwin Diaz throws to the Washington Nationals during the ninth inning at Nationals Park. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets relief pitcher Edwin Diaz throws to the Washington Nationals during the ninth inning at Nationals Park. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets have fielded calls on many pitchers, including Zack Wheeler, Noah Syndergaard, Seth Lugo and Jason Vargas. But perhaps the biggest trade deadline development is the heavy interest in Edwin Diaz, which has increased the likelihood that he will be moved.

First, a mea culpa. A few days ago I tweeted that Diaz wasn't going anywhere -- which was the sense at the time through sources, but worded too definitively. The widespread interest, which reflects a belief in Diaz's talent over his mixed results this year, has increased the chances that Diaz will, in fact, go somewhere.

Tags: Edwin Diaz, Gleyber Torres, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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New York Mets relief pitcher Edwin Diaz throws to the Washington Nationals during the ninth inning at Nationals Park. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets relief pitcher Edwin Diaz throws to the Washington Nationals during the ninth inning at Nationals Park. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets have fielded calls on many pitchers, including Zack Wheeler, Noah Syndergaard, Seth Lugo and Jason Vargas. But perhaps the biggest trade deadline development is the heavy interest in Edwin Diaz, which has increased the likelihood that he will be moved.

First, a mea culpa. A few days ago I tweeted that Diaz wasn't going anywhere -- which was the sense at the time through sources, but worded too definitively. The widespread interest, which reflects a belief in Diaz's talent over his mixed results this year, has increased the chances that Diaz will, in fact, go somewhere.

Tags: Edwin Diaz, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Apr 10, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Apr 10, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

For several weeks, the Mets' trade deadline thinking was fairly clear and straightforward. They expected to move Zack Wheeler, along with possibly Jason Vargas and Todd Frazier. They would listen on Noah Syndergaard, Edwin Diaz and others, but dramatic moves remained unlikely.

Then, Thursday brought a flurry of reports that indicated the team had become more open to moving Syndergaard by July 31.

Tags: Edwin Diaz, Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Apr 10, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Apr 10, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

For several weeks, the Mets' trade deadline thinking was fairly clear and straightforward. They expected to move Zack Wheeler, along with possibly Jason Vargas and Todd Frazier. They would listen on Noah Syndergaard, Edwin Diaz and others, but dramatic moves remained unlikely.

Then, Thursday brought a flurry of reports that indicated the team had become more open to moving Syndergaard by July 31.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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New York Mets third baseman Todd Frazier rounds the bases after hitting three-run home run against the Colorado Rockies during the first inning at Citi Field. (Andy Marlin/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets third baseman Todd Frazier rounds the bases after hitting three-run home run against the Colorado Rockies during the first inning at Citi Field. (Andy Marlin/USA TODAY Sports)

The Mets are willing to move most players on their roster, particularly free-agents-to-be like Zack Wheeler, Jason Vargas and Todd Frazier.

Of that group, the team is getting the least amount of action on Frazier, according to major league sources.

Frazier has fallen into an ill-timed slump, batting .167 in July. Although anything can change before the July 31 deadline, as of now he appears the most likely to stay put.

Tags: Todd Frazier, Andy Martino
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Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The deal is there to be made, and it's fair for both teams. Noah Syndergaard to the Yankees; Deivi Garcia and other prospects to the Mets. A classic win-win.

But according to major league sources, the teams haven't had much traction yet in trade talks, and both sides are highly skeptical that a deal will happen.

Syndergaard is likely to remain with the Mets at least until the offseason. If the team changes course and does move him before next Wednesday, they'll have many options. One source said that, despite the Mets' stated intentions, Syndergaard is being scouted "heavily" this month.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Jun 4, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The deal is there to be made, and it's fair for both teams. Noah Syndergaard to the Yankees; Deivi Garcia and other prospects to the Mets. A classic win-win.

But according to major league sources, the teams haven't had much traction yet in trade talks, and both sides are highly skeptical that a deal will happen.

Syndergaard is likely to remain with the Mets at least until the offseason. If the team changes course and does move him before next Wednesday, they'll have many options. One source said that, despite the Mets' stated intentions, Syndergaard is being scouted "heavily" this month.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jul 2, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches against the New York Yankees during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Jul 2, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches against the New York Yankees during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets' key trade deadline piece is feeling healthy and ready to return to the rotation.

According to major league sources, Zack Wheeler came through a Sunday bullpen session well and was feeling good on Monday. He is set to rejoin the rotation either Friday or Saturday against the Pirates this weekend.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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New York Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran scores a run against the Toronto Blue Jays during the eighth inning at Yankee Stadium. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran scores a run against the Toronto Blue Jays during the eighth inning at Yankee Stadium. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)

"Go back to where you came from."

The phrase has dominated the American consciousness for more than a week, following President Trump's suggestion in a Tweet that four Congresswomen of color "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came."

Several days later, Trump presided at a campaign rally over a "send her back" chat directed at Somali-born U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn).

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
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New York Mets' Carlos Beltran takes off running after hitting a three run homer during the first inning of their baseball game at Shea Stadium in New York (AP Photo/Ed Betz)
New York Mets' Carlos Beltran takes off running after hitting a three run homer during the first inning of their baseball game at Shea Stadium in New York (AP Photo/Ed Betz)

"Go back to where you came from."

The phrase has dominated the American consciousness for more than a week, following President Trump's suggestion in a Tweet that four Congresswomen of color "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came."

Several days later, Trump presided at a campaign rally over a "send her back" chat directed at Somali-born U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn).

Tags: Carlos Beltran, Andy Martino
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San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner delivers a pitch against the New York Yankees in the second inning at Oracle Park. (Cary Edmondson/USA TODAY Sports)
San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner delivers a pitch against the New York Yankees in the second inning at Oracle Park. (Cary Edmondson/USA TODAY Sports)

With the San Francisco Giants riding a six-game winning streak and jumping into the wild card race in manager Bruce Bochy's final season, the team is genuinely undecided about trading ace Madison Bumgarner and reliever Will Smith this month, according to major league sources.

A person with direct knowledge of the team's plans said plainly that Bumgarner and Smith are not available at the moment. The Giants have until July 31 to decide.

Bumgarner allowed one run in nine innings against the Mets on Thursday. While no one can argue with that result, evaluators were not overly impressed by his repertoire.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jul 13, 2019; Miami, FL, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) delivers a pitch in the second inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Jul 13, 2019; Miami, FL, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) delivers a pitch in the second inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

The Mets dispatched Ruben Amaro Jr., special assistant to the general manager Brodie Van Wagenen, to Phoenix to scout the Brewers/Diamondbacks game on Thursday, according to major league sources.

Milwaukee is interested in trading for Mets pitchers Zack Wheeler and Noah Syndergaard. The Mets are far more likely to trade Wheeler, but that will depend on how his shoulder injury impacts his value.

According to a source, Amaro's is "floating" around to various scouting assignments right now, which is standard pre-deadline activity. The Mets are doing legwork on various trade possibilities, including extensive scouting of Yankees prospects.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler pitches during the first inning of a baseball against the Detroit Tigers at Citi Field. (Sarah Stier/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler pitches during the first inning of a baseball against the Detroit Tigers at Citi Field. (Sarah Stier/USA TODAY Sports)

Everyone involved insists that Zack Wheeler's shoulder injury is not serious, and that he will be back in no time.

We take that at face value, but there's still a problem. Teams previously interested in trading for Wheeler are now nervous about his health.

Perhaps Wheeler will return from the IL in time to pitch well and assuage those concerns, but the Mets know that the timing of his injury might hurt his value to the point where keeping him and making a qualifying offer at the end of the season is the smarter move.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Feb 14, 2019; Tampa, FL, USA;New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman during spring training at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Feb 14, 2019; Tampa, FL, USA;New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman during spring training at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Yankees have been engaged for weeks in the starting pitching market, and would still prefer to land a Zack Wheeler, Trevor Bauer, or one of the other available arms who could help with the rotation. This remains the surest way to bolster their championship chances.

But given the state of the market, the team has been forced to consider other options. According to multiple general managers in search of pitching, the asking prices for Wheeler, Stroman and the like remain very high, and teams are far apart on value.

That's why, according to sources, the Red Sox and A's settled for less exciting acquisitions in Andrew Cashner and Homer Bailey. Those teams essentially looked at the asks for higher-end help and said, "forget it, we'll go with depth."

Tags: Chad Green, Dellin Betances, Luis Severino, Andy Martino
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American League starting pitcher Deivi Garcia delivers in the first inning in the 2019 MLB All Star Futures Game at Progressive Field. (David Richard/USA TODAY Sports)
American League starting pitcher Deivi Garcia delivers in the first inning in the 2019 MLB All Star Futures Game at Progressive Field. (David Richard/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets are sending their most trusted evaluator, former GM Omar Minaya, to scout the Triple-A debut of Yankees pitching prospect Deivi Garcia on Monday night, according to major league sources.

The Yankees promoted Garcia, their top pitching prospect, after he started the Futures Game in Cleveland last week. At 20 years old, Garcia is the youngest player in Triple-A.

The Mets and Yankees have had many discussions about Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler, stretching back to last winter. The Yankees will not trade Garcia for a rental player like Wheeler, who will be a free agent after this season.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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American League starting pitcher Deivi Garcia delivers in the first inning in the 2019 MLB All Star Futures Game at Progressive Field. (David Richard/USA TODAY Sports)
American League starting pitcher Deivi Garcia delivers in the first inning in the 2019 MLB All Star Futures Game at Progressive Field. (David Richard/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets are sending their most trusted evaluator, former GM Omar Minaya, to scout the Triple-A debut of Yankees pitching prospect Deivi Garcia on Monday night, according to major league sources.

The Yankees promoted Garcia, their top pitching prospect, after he started the Futures Game in Cleveland last week. At 20 years old, Garcia is the youngest player in Triple-A.

The Mets and Yankees have had many discussions about Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler, stretching back to last winter. The Yankees will not trade Garcia for a rental player like Wheeler, who will be a free agent after this season.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)
Jun 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

During the All-Star break, the Yankees and Red Sox were both talking to the Mets about Zack Wheeler, setting up a potential race between division rivals to acquire the pitcher.

Then, when the Sox acquired righty starter Andrew Cashner from Baltimore on Saturday, it left rivals to wonder if that took them out of the Wheeler sweepstakes.

That does turn out to be the case: According to major league sources, Boston is out on Wheeler now. With Cashner on board, the Sox expect to now look for bullpen help.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)
Jun 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

During the All-Star break, the Yankees and Red Sox were both talking to the Mets about Zack Wheeler, setting up a potential race between division rivals to acquire the pitcher.

Then, when the Sox acquired righty starter Andrew Cashner from Baltimore on Saturday, it left rivals to wonder if that took them out of the Wheeler sweepstakes.

That does turn out to be the case: According to major league sources, Boston is out on Wheeler now. With Cashner on board, the Sox expect to now look for bullpen help.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 22, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; A general view of New York Yankees hat and glove laying in the dugout at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Jun 22, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; A general view of New York Yankees hat and glove laying in the dugout at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

It didn't seem like a big deal, a player known for his thoughtfulness sitting at his locker several hours before a game and reading a book. From a distance, the scene could hardly have been more routine.

But when you strolled closer to veteran catcher Chris Stewart that afternoon at Yankee Stadium in 2013, you saw that, whether he knew it or not, he was engaged in an act that would once have been unthinkable: He was a Yankee player openly reading "Ball Four" in the clubhouse.

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Noah Syndergaard trade talks 00:01:09
Andy Martino discusses the latest on Noah Syndergaard trade talks and whether or not he thinks Noah will be moved by the deadline.

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets have been entertaining offers for Noah Syndergaard for long enough that a trade has begun to feel inevitable -- but the team knows that it must proceed cautiously, and be mindful of next season's rotation.

According to teams in touch with the Mets, the asking price for a July trade for Syndergaard is multiple top prospects. Rival executives say that they are skeptical Syndergaard can bring that return, given his middling performance this season.

If a team steps up, Brodie Van Wagenen will consider the offer. But he will also have to get creative about saving next year's team, which will likely be without Zack Wheeler and Jason Vargas. Pitching prospect Anthony Kay projects as a back-of-the-rotation starter until he refines his breaking ball.

Tags: Noah Syndergaard, Andy Martino
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Jul 9, 2019; Cleveland, OH, USA; (From left to right) National League outfielder Jeff McNeil (6) of the New York Mets, infielder Kris Bryant (17) of the Chicago Cubs, outfielder Christian Yelich (22) of the Milwaukee Brewers, and outfielder David Dahl (26) of the Colorado Rockies prior to the 2019 MLB All Star Game at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports (Ken Blaze)
Jul 9, 2019; Cleveland, OH, USA; (From left to right) National League outfielder Jeff McNeil (6) of the New York Mets, infielder Kris Bryant (17) of the Chicago Cubs, outfielder Christian Yelich (22) of the Milwaukee Brewers, and outfielder David Dahl (26) of the Colorado Rockies prior to the 2019 MLB All Star Game at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports (Ken Blaze)

CLEVELAND - After the All Star Game on Tuesday, Jeff McNeil expressed his displeasure that the scoreboard at Progressive Field displayed Jacob deGrom's picture when he batted.

"That was tough to see deGrom's picture up there," McNeil said. "I didn't really like that. I want to see my picture up there. I know my family did too. What are you gonna do, I guess. I don't think that should happen."

Now, the Indians are apologizing to McNeil, in addition to Colorado's David Dahl and the Cubs' Willson Contreras, whose names were misspelled.

Tags: Jeff McNeil, Andy Martino
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Jul 9, 2019; Cleveland, OH, USA; National League infielder Pete Alonso (20) of the New York Mets prior to the 2019 MLB All Star Game at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports (Ken Blaze)
Jul 9, 2019; Cleveland, OH, USA; National League infielder Pete Alonso (20) of the New York Mets prior to the 2019 MLB All Star Game at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports (Ken Blaze)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

CLEVELAND -- Of the many Pete Alonso Moments that defined All-Star week this year, perhaps the most representative was the reverse heel turn that the young slugger managed on Monday night. Facing hometown favorite Carlos Santana in the first round of the home run derby, Alonso was surprised to hear boos in an otherwise jolly event.

He responded by activating his clutch gene to recover from a shaky start, and edge Santana by one home run. Indians fans were not pleased.

Fast forward to about two hours later, when Alonso called for time out during the final round. Instead of quietly gathering himself, he waved his arms to the crowd in a gesture that urged them to cheer louder. They did. In the space of a single evening, he had converted disappointed Clevelanders into Pete Alonso fans.

Tags: Pete Alonso, Andy Martino
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New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler pitches against the Miami Marlins during the first inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler pitches against the Miami Marlins during the first inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

CLEVELAND -- Zack Wheeler has become a pitcher in high demand, and the Mets have now begun trade talks, according to major league sources. Among the teams who have been in contact are the Yankees and Red Sox, both of whom are interested in Wheeler.

The Braves and Cubs are two other possibilities for Wheeler. According to one source, there is significant interest in Wheeler. A trade is not believed to be close with any one suitor, but the Mets have shifted into a more aggressive sell mode.

Jason Vargas and Todd Frazier are also available. Noah Syndergaard isn't a total lock to stay, but it is far more likely that the Mets explore trading him again this winter, per sources.

Tags: Clint Frazier, Jason Vargas, Noah Syndergaard, Todd Frazier, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler pitches against the Miami Marlins during the first inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler pitches against the Miami Marlins during the first inning at Citi Field. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

CLEVELAND -- Zack Wheeler has become a pitcher in high demand, and the Mets have now begun trade talks, according to major league sources. Among the teams who have been in contact are the Yankees and Red Sox, both of whom are interested in Wheeler.

The Braves and Cubs are two other possibilities for Wheeler. According to one source, there is significant interest in Wheeler. A trade is not believed to be close with any one suitor, but the Mets have shifted into a more aggressive sell mode.

Jason Vargas and Todd Frazier are also available. Noah Syndergaard isn't a total lock to stay, but it is far more likely that the Mets explore trading him again this winter, per sources.

Tags: Clint Frazier, Jason Vargas, Noah Syndergaard, Todd Frazier, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Girardi to the Mets? 00:00:47
Andy Martino reacts to the Mets looking into former Yankee manager Joe Girardi. Would Girardi work for the Mets?

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Mets are trying to get Mickey Callaway through the rest of the season, allowing Brodie Van Wagenen to launch a wide-ranging search for his own manager. That way, the GM can request permission to speak to other team's employees, and fully evaluate the big names who are between jobs.

But the team has already begun thinking about candidates, and in some cases proceeding with quiet due diligence. Van Wagenen and others in the organization have, for example, asked around about former Yankees manager Joe Girardi, according to major league sources.

Friends of Girardi's say that he is very eager to manage again. The Mets, in turn, are doing their homework but seem reluctant due to Girardi's reputation.

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Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman delivers a pitch against Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning at Rogers Centre. (Kevin Sousa/USA TODAY Sports)
Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman delivers a pitch against Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning at Rogers Centre. (Kevin Sousa/USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Interested teams are awaiting word on Toronto starter Marcus Stroman's left shoulder/pectoral injury, but a source close to Stroman said that the All-Star is fine. That means that Toronto should still have a healthy and appealing trade chip.

The Yankees have some interest in Stroman, but are unlikely to trade five years of Clint Frazier for a pitcher who will be a free agent after 2020. They are also interested in Cleveland's Trevor Bauer and the Mets' Zack Wheeler, among other targets.

Stroman left his start on Saturday with what the Jays later called left shoulder and pectoral cramping.

Tags: Clint Frazier, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Wheeler on Yankees short list 00:01:15
SNY MLB Insider Andy Martino discusses pitcher Zack Wheeler being on Yankees short list of arms to possibly acquire at the trade deadline.

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Trades between the Mets and Yankees are rare, but if the Yanks make the strongest offer for Zack Wheeler, the Mets would have no issues sending him across town, according to major league sources.

Although the Mets are historically cautious about helping their rivals in the Bronx -- most recently, trades for Jay Bruce, Lucas Duda and Neil Walker fell through -- word around Citi Field is that Brodie Van Wagenen has the go-ahead to accept the best offer. If it comes from the Yankees, so be it.

Relations between the two teams unfroze a bit during the offseason, when Van Wagenen and Brian Cashman discussed a blockbuster Noah Syndergaard trade. Although that deal fizzled, both GMs insisted that they had initiated a new era of Yankees/Mets relations.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Wheeler on Yankees short list 00:01:15
SNY MLB Insider Andy Martino discusses pitcher Zack Wheeler being on Yankees short list of arms to possibly acquire at the trade deadline.

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Trades between the Mets and Yankees are rare, but if the Yanks make the strongest offer for Zack Wheeler, the Mets would have no issues sending him across town, according to major league sources.

Although the Mets are historically cautious about helping their rivals in the Bronx -- most recently, trades for Jay Bruce, Lucas Duda and Neil Walker fell through -- word around Citi Field is that Brodie Van Wagenen has the go-ahead to accept the best offer. If it comes from the Yankees, so be it.

Relations between the two teams unfroze a bit during the offseason, when Van Wagenen and Brian Cashman discussed a blockbuster Noah Syndergaard trade. Although that deal fizzled, both GMs insisted that they had initiated a new era of Yankees/Mets relations.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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May 2, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 2, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard (34) pitches against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

With the Mets effectively out of playoff contention, their next move is to pivot to trade talks about Zack Wheeler, as SNY reported last week.

The team would also love to rid themselves of Jason Vargas because of his lack of contrition about a recent assault threat, and they will see how other clubs value Todd Frazier.

In all likelihood, that will represent the totality of their action in advance of the July 31 trade deadline -- but the Mets know they would be remiss to not at least survey the market for Noah Syndergaard and Edwin Diaz.

Ever since last winter, when the Mets were talking about Syndergaard with the Marlins, Yankees and Padres, it's been clear that they're willing to move on if the right deal presents itself. Unfortunately, rivals confirm the obvious: Syndergaard's 4.56 ERA and injured list stint have left the Mets with a diminished trade chip.

Tags: Edwin Diaz, Jason Vargas, Noah Syndergaard, Todd Frazier, Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)
Jun 27, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher Zack Wheeler (45) pitches during the first inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Zack Wheeler continued his underrated season on Thursday, allowing one run in six innings in a brutal 6-3 loss to the Phillies. The way this year is shaking out for the Mets, who fell to eight games under .500, it's becoming clear that Wheeler's long career with the team is likely winding down.

For weeks, rival GMs have wondered if the Mets will become sellers. The team's recent play has begun to answer that question for Brodie Van Wagenen.

If the Mets don't turn their season around immediately, they'll have to field inquiries on Wheeler and Todd Frazier, both free agents at the end of the year. Wheeler's performance between now and July 31 will, of course, influence his value.

Tags: Zack Wheeler, Andy Martino
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Jun 22, 2019; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Cincinnati Reds pitcher Luis Castillo (58) throws a pitch in the first inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports (Benny Sieu)
Jun 22, 2019; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Cincinnati Reds pitcher Luis Castillo (58) throws a pitch in the first inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports (Benny Sieu)

Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |

The Yankees are targeting controllable starting pitchers at the trade deadline, and won't move Clint Frazier for a rental.

But one high-end arm that will not be available is Luis Castillo of the Reds, according to major league sources. Rumors surfaced this week linking Castillo to the Yankees.

Asked if Castillo might be traded, one American League executive in touch with the Reds texted: "Do u do stand up comedy in ur spare time ? That's hilarious ! Nfw !"

Tags: Clint Frazier, Andy Martino
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