This is Marlon Byrd. - Christian Petersen
Your Saturday morning dose of New York Mets and Major League Baseball news, notes, and links
Meet the Mets
On Friday evening, the Mets announced the signing of a veteran free agent center fielder with the initials "MB". That's right, Marlon Byrd has joined the club on a minor league deal with an invite to spring training. The 35-year old was a 4-win player as recently as 2010 with the Cubs on the strength of solid defense and above league average offensive production but he fell off the cliff in 2012, split between Chicago and Boston. He'll compete for a job this spring.
You can add two more relievers to the Mets' watch list, as sources say Jose Valverde and Francisco Rodriguez are on the radar. They're not perfect options, as they've both seen their stuff decline in recent years, but either one could be a decent buy on a one-year deal with lots of incentives. Anybody who can try to unseat Frank Francisco as closer is a positive.
There was a little chatter on Michael Bourn yesterday: Peter Gammons, speaking on MLB Network's Hot Stove show, mentioned that he'd gotten the sense that there was optimism among his sources regarding the Mets' pursuit to get the 11th pick in the draft protected, which would ultimately allow them to further pursue Bourn. I'm warming up to the idea of Bourn, as long as the 11th pick is protected and assuming he'll agree to sign for three years.
Toby Hyde relays to us that Top Prospect Alert's top 150 prospects included 5 Mets farmhands: Zack Wheeler, Travis d'Arnaud, Noah Syndergaard, Gavin Cecchini, and Brandon Nimmo.
In case you missed it, Ted Berg (formerly of SNY) has hooked on with USA Today Sports where he'll write about baseball. Congrats!
The Mets offered up their picks for the Super Bowl yesterday.
Around the Majors
Sources say that Anthony Bosch personally injected Alex Rodriguez with PEDs. Welp.
Yesterday At AA
Amazin' Avenue's Chris McShane will be at spring training! If you want to find out who is ITBSOTL, or who the KOST is, or whether Ruben Tejada reported to PSL early or just merely on time again, go ahead and ask away.
Matthew Callan says farewell to the now illegal fake to third/throw to first move and it comes complete with video of Turk Wendell pulling off the feat.
Matthew Artus remembers former New York mayor Ed Koch, who passed away yesterday.
Spencer Schneier looks into the Mets who made Jonathan Mayo's top 100 prospects list.
Was Sandy Alderson telling the truth? The full story at 11.
The Mets signed Johan Santana on a previous February 1st. What a day.