Meet the Mets
At the 36th annual Thurman Munson Awards, Mets closer Jeurys Familia discussed his bond with his new Mets teammate Antonio Bastardo. Former teammates in the Dominican Winter League, Familia and Bastardo will now anchor the team's bullpen in 2016.
The Mets' pitching staff received praise from Chipper Jones, who picked the Amazins as World Series favorites, citing the team's elite starting rotation.
Wilmer Flores sung the praises of Mets fans, telling the New York Post that "playing baseball somewhere else would be tough."
It's World Series or bust for Travis d'Arnaud, according to Kevin Kernan of the Post. The Mets' catcher also offered tongue-in-cheek praise of Noah Syndergaard.
Around the NL East
Demetrius Bell of Talking Chop reflected on the Braves' offseason, speaking optimistically of "fresh faces" within the organization. As many have pointed out, the Shelby Miller trade with Arizona is one that could pay dividends for years to come.
Justin Bour, who socked 23 home runs in an impressive rookie campaign last season, may cede at-bats in 2016 to former Brave Chris Johnson.
Todd Zolecki of MLB.com listed offseason acquisition Peter Bourjos as one of four Philadelphia bounce-back candidates this season.
Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post wrote about Josh Johnson (position player), who will manage the Naionals' Gulf Coast League team in 2016 after a 12-season minor league career.
Around the Majors
Former Met Tyler Clippard is excited to have signed with the Diamondbacks on a two-year, $12.25 million deal. Clippard, who made 32 regular season appearances with the Mets in 2015, was glad to be done with the free agency process.
Astros slugger Evan Gattis will be sidelined for 4-to-6 weeks after a recent hernia surgery. Gattis slugged a combined 43 home runs over two seasons with the Braves.
Starting pitcher Mat Latos signed a one-year, $3 million deal with the White Sox. Latos' character has come into question since his hostile exit from the Reds organization.
In a pair of notable minor league signings, the Mariners agreed to terms with reliever Joel Peralta, and first baseman Travis Ishikawa signed with the White Sox.
August Fagerstrom sees the White Sox as a clear fit for free agent starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo. Like Ian Desmond and Dexter Fowler, Gallardo declined a qualifying offer and any new team signing him is subject to losing a draft pick for doing so.
Yankees backstop Brian McCann didn't mince words when asked of his ability to play first base. Greg Bird will likely miss the 2016 season with a torn labrum in his right shoulder, leaving the Yankees with compromised corner infield depth.
Eno Sarris of FanGraphs hosted a fun and informative AMA on Reddit.
This Date in Mets History
Happy birthday to Nails himself, as Lenny Dykstra turns 53. Dykstra, whose off-field issues have been well-documented, was a fan-favorite on the 1986 Mets. Happy birthdays to Sherman "Roadblock" Jones, Bobby J. Jones, Alberto Castillo, and starting catcher Travis d'Arnaud!