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Mets Morning News: Mets return home, await series against Phillies

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

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Meet the Mets

The Mets were off as they returned to New York in advance of their home opening series against the Phillies.

The Mets will look to duplicate their success against in-division opponents during the 2016 season, wrote Marc Carig. In 2015, the Mets tallied a 47-29 record against the NL East.

After witnessing Noah Syndergaard throwing a 95 mph slider, August Fagerstrom compared him to Aroldis Chapman at Fangraphs.

Jacob deGrom and his wife are still awaiting the arrival of their first child, a son. While he is prepared to pitch Friday's home opener, Steven Matz will likely start in his place should he have to leave.

At ESPN New York, Mets shortstop prospect Amed Rosario was profiled. Rosario, Amazin' Avenue's number two prospect for 2016, will begin the season with High-A St. Lucie.

For the Baseball Prospectus Mets local site, Sara Novic wrote an ode  to Ed Kranepool, who she admires for his consistent presence on early Mets teams.

Mayor Bill de Blasio officially signed into law the bill that bans smokeless tobacco at stadiums in New York City. It has also been banned in Boston, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Around the NL East

The Marlins fell to the Tigers by a score of 7-3. Despite striking out 13 batters, Jose Fernandez allowed five earned runs.

The Phillies lost in walk-off fashion 3-2, as Dalier Hinojosa surrendered two runs in the bottom of the ninth. However, starter Aaron Nola turned in an excellent first start of the season, going seven innings while allowing just one run.

The Phillies are also officially using a platoon at first base, with Darin Ruf facing lefties, while Ryan Howard faces righties.

The Nationals defeated the Braves 3-1 to sweep the teams' opening series. Matt den Dekker, who was recalled after Ben Revere Ben Revere was placed on the disabled list with a strained oblique muscle, had the deciding hit in the seventh inning. Read recaps of the game at Federal Baseball and Talking Chop.

Around MLB

Josh Donaldson exited the Blue Jays' game after apparently hurting his leg. The injury occurred when he hit a grounder, attempted to run to first, but was forced to stop.

Rockies' shortstop prospect Trevor Story became the first player in history to begin his major league career with a home run in three consecutive games. Story has four in total, having hit two on Opening Day.

The Rangers signed Burke Badenhop to a minor league contract. Badenhop was released by the Nationals at the end of spring training.

Two games on Tuesday featured controversial plays involving the new base running rules. The players are still learning these rules, wrote Tyler Kepner.

John Sickels profiled Matt Bowman, who was claimed by the Cardinals from the Mets in the Rule 5 draft this past offseason, and made St. Louis' 25-man roster to open the season.

Yesterday at AA

Jonathan Maseng compiled video highlights of the Mets' win over Royals on Tuesday.

In episode 179 of Amazin' Avenue Audio, Jeffrey Paternostro discusses the Mets' minor league system.

Timothy Finnegan provided GIFs and analysis of Syndergaard's pitches in his Tuesday start, including the 95 mph slider.

Linda Surovich reviewed Ron Darling's new book, Game 7, 1986: Failure and Triumph in the Biggest Game of My Life. As the title suggests, Darling discusses his own performance in Game 7, but also the events that led to that moment.

This Date in Mets History

In 1984, Dwight Gooden made his debut with the Mets. The 19-year-old struck out five over five innings against the Astros while earning his first career win.