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Mets Morning News: Belt belts Beltway Series' odds of happening, Cardinals a little verklempt after Kemp home run

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Your Sunday morning dose of Mets and Major League Baseball news, notes, and links.

H. Darr Beiser-USA TODAY Sports

Meet the Mets

It's a little quiet in Queens these days, but with all these former Mets players and farmhands in the playoffs, Greg Prince reflects upon the infamous J.J. Putz trade that sent so many players packing.

Mike Vorkunov takes a look at Kirk Nieuwenhuis's 2014 season and what 2015 might hold for him.

Joel Sherman has some ideas about who the Mets could acquire this winter to compete—without significantly raising payroll.

This really has nothing to do with the Mets specifically, but Mike Francesa fell asleep on the air again.

Around MLB

There have been a bunch of fantastic baseball games already in this postseason, and yesterday was no exception. Jordan Zimmermann and Tim Hudson went toe-to-toe in Game 2 yesterday, but heading into the top of the ninth, the Nationals were up 1-0. After retiring the first two batters he faced, Zimmermann issued a walk, and Nationals manager Matt Williams took him out of the game.

The Giants then tied the game—and very nearly took the lead on a close play at the plate—against Drew Storen. Then the game went to extras, and neither team scored until Brandon Belt hit a solo home run in the top of the eighteenth. That was all the Giants needed, as they won to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the series. Perhaps the numbers were on Williams' side.

As Grant Brisbee points out, it was the longest game in postseason history. It was too long for a few Nationals fans, too, apparently.

Down 2-0 going into the eighth inning, the Cardinals scored a pair of runs to even Game 2 with the Dodgers. But Matt Kemp—whose resurgent year at the plate seems to have flown a bit under the radar—hit a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth to put the Dodgers back in front. That lead held up, as Los Angeles evened the series at one game apiece.

The Times takes a look at postseason pay shares and how they're split up among those who receive them.

The Journal profiles Ned Yost and Buck Showalter, two managers whose in-game strategies certainly do not go unnoticed.

Plenty was made of Clayton Kershaw's potential pitch-tipping in his awful start the other night, but Ken Rosenthal reports it was scouting that allowed the Cardinals to tattoo him in the game. Speaking of which, Beyond the Box Score looks at some of the worst starts in postseason history.

The Hardball Times writes about the gradual integration of baseball after Jackie Robinson's debut and hones in specifically on 1951.

Around the NL East

Ian Desmond might miss a playoff game for the birth of his child. Of course, the Nationals are only guaranteed one more playoff game at this point.

Fish Stripes reviews the 2014 seasons of Jose Fernandez and what it calls "the best outfield in baseball."

The Braves are making changes in their front office in an attempt to rebuild their minor league system.

Yesterday at Amazin' Avenue

Steve Sypa has a profile of Hector Olivera, who recently defected from Cuba.

And was Buddy Carlyle so good this year that he earned himself a penciled-in spot in next year's bullpen?