Mets Morning News: 96 hours to go

USA TODAY Sports

The Mets set their rotation, Elvin has left the building, and Adam Wainwright gets paid.

Meet the Mets

The Mets started the home stretch of their Spring Training schedule last night against the Houston Astros. Opening Day starter Jon Niese made his final Spring appearance and was dominant, albeit against an Astros line-up comprised of more Baseball America Top 100 prospects than major leaguers. Today the Mets travel to Jupiter to play the St. Louis Cardinals in a continuation of their Best-of-99 spring training series. The game will be broadcast on ESPN and feature a start from top prospect Domingo Tapia, so you should definitely tune in. Also appearing today will be Daniel Murphy, who finally gets into Grapefruit League action. This strongly suggests that he will be ready to go on April 1st, as once he plays on the major league side, he can no longer have a backdated DL date.

Speaking of prospects, Toby Hyde continues his Top 41 prospect list with #31-29 and #28-27. Also, Baseball America released their organizational rankings yesterday. The Mets clocked in at #16. That's probably a bit lower than where I'd have them, but the only team I see ranked ahead of them that has a clearly inferior system is the Yankees. And in minor league Spring Training action, The B-Mets bested the Springfield Cardinals 5-2 yesterday behind a solid outing from Logan Verrett.

Faith and Fear in Flushing announced the winners in their Knuckleball DVD contest. Congratulations to all the winners, and praise Dickey.

And the Sarasota Herald-Tribune remembers former Mets prospect Brian Cole, who was profiled in Sports Illustrated's Baseball Preview issue.

Yesterday at AA

Chris McShane wrote about the Elvin Ramirez trade and the Mets Opening Day rotation.

David Moseder looked back at This Date in TRAID History.

James K kindly requested your 2013 projections for Dillon Gee.

And I took a closer look at some of the Mets prospects who might be on the market.

Around MLB

The Cardinals locked up Adam Wainwright to a five-year extension worth a hair under 100 million. The extension will cover 2014-2018, or Wainwright's Age 32-36 season. It's a bit of a risk, but with Chris Carpenter's career in limbo, it's probably the right move for St. Louis.

The Tigers do not have a closer set for Opening Day as they optioned top prospect Bruce Rondon to AAA after a bad blow-up in Wednesday's Grapefruit League game. Wait, are you allowed to play baseball without a set closer? That's news to me!

In what is essentially the SABR version of the Yalta conference, FanGraphs and Baseball-Reference have agreed to develop a unified version of replacement level.

And while the Nationals have a reputation of being very scout-friendly, they do in fact use a lot of baseball analytics. Can't wait for the Danny Knobler piece about this!

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