Fourth Place Applesauce - Francoeur returns as a Met, Stewart & Dykstra, F!, Angler, and El Duque


Hopefully the applesauce itself isn't fourth place, just the team that it mainly covers. I'm so glad the Nationals are in the division, otherwise we could easily be looking at a last place Met team. Remember when they were in first place for a few days? Yeah, that was pretty nice.

Meet the Mets

Second verse looks to be the same as the first. Francoeur went hitless in his return to Turner Field. Ryan Church pinch ran and scored a run.

Rob Neyer declares that the Mets need a miracle to remain competitive

Jon Stewart loves his Nails posters and Jim Cramer.

The Red Sox are ready to dump Julio Lugo, a sub-par defensive, adequate offensive shortstop. Do the Mets take the bait?

Nytimes.com compiles the best entries to Banner Day.

Why is Wilmer Flores still playing shortstop if everyone agrees that's not where he's going to end up?

As usual, the Mets' initial release regarding Fernando Martinez's injury was incomplete. He is having surgery. In better news, however, Jose Reyes is taking BP.

Around the NL East

Jamie Moyer, Ryan Madson, and JC Romero combined for a one-hit shutout of the Marlins. Phillies Nation dubs Moyer the "Angler", which just happens to be Dick Cheney's Secret Service code name.

Ryan Howard is the fastest big leaguer to 200 home runs.

Rodrigo Lopez is hoping to join Pedro Martinez in the Phillie rotation

More fodder for coyote522000, Joe Posnanski talks about Raul Ibanez's history of being underappreciated.

The Nationals began the Jim Riggleman era acting like it was still the Manny Act era, losing to the Cubs 6-2.

Around MLB

The Rangers don't think El Duque's a big leaguer and will keep him in the minors, activating a clause in his contract allowing Hernandez to opt out and become a free agent.

The Cubs have signed recently released Toronto closer B.J. Ryan.

Jake Peavy has his protective boot removed, feels good. GM Kevin Towers says he's 50-50 on a return this season.

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