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Mets Morning News: Inside-the-park HRerra leads to spring tie, loss of Shannon Forde affects all

Your Saturday morning dose of New York Mets and Major League Baseball news, notes, and links.

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Meet the Mets

The Mets tied their first spring training game thanks to Dilson Herrera's 9th inning inside the park home run!

Terrible news broke last night, as Mets media relations staffer Shannon Forde passed away after a long battle with breast cancer at 44 years old. Just heartbreaking. Joel Sherman wrote a touching piece on the passing of Forde last night.

Jacob deGrom declined to sign his contract with the Mets, as he's hoping for a long term contract extension. Sandy Alderson says the team is under no pressure to extend any of their young pitchers. Obviously deGrom has been fantastic but the Mets are right to be cheap with him while they have the opportunity. A pair of the Mets' regular starters will make their 2016 debuts on Monday.

In an interview with the New York Times, Jenrry Mejia says that his ban was orchestrated by baseball officials. Hmm, should we get the tinfoil hats out?

Yoenis Cespedes is working with Kevin Long on tweaking his approach at the plate. He also played shortstop during warmups yesterday with Asdrubal Cabrera watching. Meanwhile, the Times has a feature on Mets spring pitching coach Guy Conti, who famously taught Pedro Martinez his changeup in the Dodgers' system.

Could the Mets become the 15th team to win the World Series the year after losing it? Will the Mets fail in that quest? One of the best signs about this team is that you really have to dig for reasons why they might fail.

MLB's Billy Bean was in camp and praised the Mets for Pride Night. Bean also says he's maintained dialogue with Daniel Murphy after his comments last year.

Around the NL East

Carter Capps is going to see Dr. James Andrews and the Marlins are going to hold off on acquiring a reliever until they get the diagnosis.

Maikel Franco is destroying baseballs early on in Phillies camp.

Daniel Murphy is a National, now. Not a Met. A National.

Did you know that the Braves might actually be the most popular team in Florida?

Around the Majors

Jon Niese could be primed for a revival with the Pirates, thanks to Ray Searage.

Brett Anderson is out for a while and the Dodgers' rotation depth is immediately getting tested.

Munenori Kawasaki serenaded his Cubs teammates with some Aerosmith!

Grant Brisbee showed us the 11 genres of baseball photos.

Ruben Amaro admits the Red Sox were right not to trade Mookie Betts for Cole Hamels.

The original Hank the Dog is alive, despite pictures from the Brewers that appear to show a different looking Hank.

This Date In Mets History

Happy birthday to former Mets slugger Mike Hessman, the all-time minor league home run leader!

Yesterday At AA

Look at these ex-Mets players in their strange, new uniforms!

We previewed Steven Matz's 2016 season.

If you read an article or find a link that you think would be a great addition to a future edition of Mets Morning News, please forward it to our tips email address and we'll try to add it in.