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Mets Morning News: Wilmer Flores preparing for utility role, Mets' system ranked 16th on Law's list

Your Thursday morning dose of Mets and Major League Basebal news, notes, and links.

Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Meet the Mets

Despite having spent much time as the Mets' starting shortstop in 2015, Wilmer Flores has been displaced wiith the signing of Asdrubal Cabrera. Flores is now preparing for the 2016 season, during which he will serve as the team's primary utility infielder.

Keith Law of ESPN ranked the Mets' farm system 16th in baseball. They dropped from fourth place last year due to graduations and trades. However, Law noted that the system still contains promising position players.

Carlos Torres has signed a minor league contract that includes an invitation to spring training with the Braves. Torres elected free agency after clearing waivers last week.

Former Mets nemesis Chipper Jones picked the Mets to win the World Series in 2016.

Want to meet Matt Harvey? There are two opportunities to bid on an evening with the star pitcher. Proceeds will go to the Global Connections for Women Foundation and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Around the NL East

In Keith Law's farm system rankings, the Braves and Phillies both landed in the top ten. The Braves were given the top spot, while the Phillies were ranked sixth.

The Phillies acquired infielder Taylor Featherston from the Angels in a trade. Featherston has played in 101 games in the majors, all in 2015, and hit just .162.

At Fish Stripes, Scott Gelman debated the merits of signing Tim Lincecum to join the Marlins' rotation in 2016.

Around MLB

The Orioles are in the running for several of top remaining free agents. They are reportedly close to a three-year deal with Yovani Gallardo, have been in discussions with Dexter Fowler, and could pursue Pedro Alvarez and Jay Bruce.

Evan Gattis underwent surgery for a hernia. While he is expected to need four-to-six weeks to mend, the injury is not considered severe.

Former Mets first baseman Ike Davis is expected to sign a minor league deal soon. The Yankees are reportedly in the mix, having lost Greg Bird to injury.

After acquiring Drew Storen from the Nationals this offseason, the Blue Jays will hold a competition for the closer's job this spring. He will be up against Roberto Osuna, who saved 20 games for Toronto as a 20-year-old in 2015.

This Date in Mets History

In 1987, postseason hero Ray Knight left the Mets by way of signing a two-year deal with the Orioles. This earned him the distinction of being the first reigning World Series MVP to join a new team for the following season.