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Mets Morning News: Whoever said "more money, more problems" probably wasn't a Mets fan

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Your Independence Day dose of New York Mets and Major League Baseball news, notes, and links.

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Happy Independence Day everyone! On this day in 1776, our forefathers signed a document that ensured that we would be free to choose to root for whichever baseball team we wanted to root for. And we chose the Mets.

Meet the Mets

The Mets didn't play a baseball game yesterday. The team took a day off while it traveled home to prepare for a series versus the Rangers. Once of Texas' only good players that isn't injured, Yu Darvish was supposed to pitch last night in Baltimore, but he was scratched because of the threat of rain. Tonight, he'll take the hill opposite Jon Niese in the series opener.

Ken Davidoff writes that the Amazins are better off sticking with Terry Collins and Sandy Alderson for now. You wouldn't know it from looking at the team's record (try the run differential!) but New York is getting some good performances out of key players this season.

The Mets would probably be in better in close games if they could just get a darn hit with runners in scoring position.

First base coach Tom Goodwin will be back with the Mets this weekend after spending two weeks away from the club to deal with a family issue. It will also be nice to see David Wright back in uniform on Friday after he was sidelined for a week with a bruised shoulder.

With Wright trailing behind Aramis Ramirez in the All-Star balloting, it could be Niese who reps the Mets at the All-Star Game. The lefty has yet to make an All-Star appearance in his seven-year career.

Vic Black attributes a portion of his big league success this season to long toss.

First baseman Allan Dykstra will represent the Las Vegas 51s for the Pacific Coast League at the Triple-A All-Star Game.

Around the NL East

The Phillies were down a run in the ninth, but they rallied against Marlins closer Steve Cishek and won last night's game 5-4.

The Nationals have allowed the fewest runs in the NL, and Federal Baseball has a great sabermetric breakdown of the team's pitching staff.

Around the Majors

In honor of the 75th anniversary of Lou Gehrig's famous speech, MLB put together a touching video.

The Athletics reached an extension with O.co Coliseum thanks to a power play by the commissioner on the team's behalf.

The Brewers' adorable pet dog Hank is not only bringing the team good fortune this season. He's reeling in the dough, as tickets for his bobblehead night are fetching (oh yeah!) top dollar on the secondary market.

The MLBPA is investigating the role that agents may have played in the Biogenesis scandal. If Sonic the Hedgehog was seen canoodling with Princess Peach, would that be a Sega Genesis scandal?

Yankees lefty CC Sabathia suffered a setback while recovering from a knee injury, and he's going to get checked on by Dr. James Andrews. Better news for the Yanks: Masahiro Tanaka won again, but he did so while failing to register a quality start for the first time ever in his major league career.

If Tanaka keeps pitching this well, maybe a random family from Kansas will name their kids after him. Really.

The mothership handed out its midseason awards for the National League.

As if you weren't jacked up enough for the hot dog contest going on later today, Howard Megdal writes that while it's nice that ballparks are offering a variety of quality food options these days, there's still something to be said for a good ole tube of beef with mustard on top.

Joe Maddon had some fun with the Rays lineup yesterday at the expense of people who don't like 80s music.

Yesterday at AA

Michael Donato explained how the struggles of Wilmer Flores are a microcosm of the 2014 Mets.

On this date in 1985, the Mets and Braves started playing a game that would end up lasting 19 innings and over six hours.