Thrice In A Lifetime Applesauce: You May Find Yourself Getting Rocked By The Braves, And You May Tell Yourself "This Is Not My Beautiful Ace!"

April and May were so, so long ago.

Meet the Mets

Four Outs. That's all the time it took for Johan Santana to allow eight runs on eight hits in Saturday's 9-3 drubbing at the hands of the Braves. Santana was done in by some bloops and some blasts in his abbreviated return from the DL but the end result was ugly and ultimately compounded when Jeremy Hefner allowed a mammoth three-run home run to Freddie Freeman, capping off Santana's line. For Johan, it was his third start this season in which he was knocked out before he could even get an at bat. In his last four starts, he's allowed an astounding 27 runs and 36 hits over 14 innings.

Choose Your Recap: MLB.com, ESPN NY, Daily News, New York Times, Associated Press, Star-Ledger

The Mets once again look to salvage the finale of a series, an all too familiar phrase around these parts the last few weeks. Jon Niese faces off against the resurgent Ben Sheets tonight in Sunday ESPN baseball primetime.

With a month and a half left in the season, the Mets will likely use this time to evaluate what Santana can offer them in next year's rotation. Owed a grand total of $31 million for 2013, he'll most definitely be on the team come next Opening Day. After his start, Terry Collins cited rust as the issue with Santana and not an injury. In order to clear a spot for him on the roster, Garret Olson was designated for assignment after a single disastrous outing.

What can we expect from the Mets in 2013? It's easy to hope things will be better but if ownership doesn't want to add payroll, it's going to be tough to adequately add to the talent base.

Luckily, the relatively near future should feature righty Zack Wheeler and he pitched well in his second start for Buffalo.

Now that Garrett Olson is gone, Josh Edgin is once again the lone lefty in the pen. How many times will we be saying this next year?

Buffalo righties Jenrry Mejia and Jeurys Familia may receive September callups as relievers. Who knows if they're ready but with them on the 40-man and already using up an option anyway, the Mets might as well see what they can do considering how badly they'll need good relievers next season.

21-year old righty Rafael Montero was shut down for the season after his last start as he's already hit his innings limit. Montero split 2012 between Savannah and St. Lucie and will likely see his name fly up Mets prospect rankings this offseason after a breakout year. It'll be interesting to see if the Mets send him to Binghamton to start 2013.

Around the NL East

Make it eight straight victories for the Nationals, who defeated the Diamondbacks 6-5. Cliff Lee pitched decently again but the Phillies didn't bail him out, as they lost to the Cardinals 4-1. Finally, the Marlins defeated the Dodgers 7-3.

Around the Majors

Joey Votto is at risk of missing the entire month of August after having a minor procedure on his knee that could push his timetable back. The Reds did manage a 10-game winning streak without him, so obviously TRAID HIM NOAW.

Bad news for the Yankees, as their ace CC Sabathia is headed to the DL with some elbow soreness. The big guy has been indestructible for most of his career but this is his second DL trip of the year. The add depth, the Yankees inked righty Derek Lowe to a minor league deal, which isn't a surprise considering they sign every former Red Sox player.

Rangers' catcher Mike Napoli is on the DL with a strained quad. After a ridiculous breakout season in 2011, Napoli has not been the same in 2012 and is a free agent at the end of the season.

Here's something not surprising: Huston Street is headed to the DL with a calf strain.

Braves' ace Tommy Hanson is set to make a rehab start at AAA today and he should return to Atlanta's rotation soon after.

Everybody stop doing what you're doing and watch Mike Trout do something awesome. That's just the third home run he's robbed this season (apparently not a single outfielder did that last year). Did I mention he's just 21 and hitting .344/.406/.599 with 21 bombs? Oh right...he's also 36-39 in stolen base attempts.

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