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Mets Morning News: Polar Bear Slam

Your Sunday morning dose of New York Mets and MLB news, notes, and links.

New York Mets v Washington Nationals Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

Meet the Mets

The Mets defeated the Nationals 5-0, moving to 3-0 to start the season for the first time in a decade. Chris Bassitt tossed six scoreless innings in his Mets debut, striking out eight hitters, walking one, and yielding only three hits. Pete Alonso snapped a scoreless tie in fifth inning with the first grand slam of his career and Drew Smith, Joely Rodriguez, and Adam Ottavino blanked the Nationals over the final three frames to secure the victory.

Choose your recap: Amazin’ Avenue short and long, NY Post, Daily News, Newsday, North Jersey

Edwin Díaz was placed on the bereavement list yesterday and David Peterson replaced him on the roster.

Upon hearing the news about Dewayne Haskins’ death, Pete Alonso—who was involved in a car accident himself during spring training—was introspective. “That could have easily been me,” the Mets’ first baseman said.

The Mets’ new approach under hitting coach Eric Chavez is already paying dividends, writes Pat Ragazzo of Sports Illustrated/Fan Nation. In the early going, the Mets are relying less on the long ball (last night’s massive grand slam from Pete Alonso aside) to score runs and are showing improvement with runners in scoring position—a situation in which the team struggled in the past.

Mets shortstop prospect Kevin Kendall had surgery on his non-throwing arm, per a post on his Instagram account.

Around the National League East

Kyle Wright tossed six scoreless innings for the Braves in their 2-1 victory over the Reds. The Braves also held their World Series ring ceremony before the game.

The Braves signed Delino DeShields to a minor league deal.

Kenley Jansen and Freddie Freeman swapping teams adds an interesting dynamic to the budding rivalry between the Braves and the Dodgers, writes Jorge Castillo of the LA Times.

The Marlins also won 2-1, defeating the Giants on the back of a strong performance from their bullpen. After blowing a save on Opening Day, Anthony Bender induced a key double play in the ninth to help secure the victory.

The Phillies beat the A’s 4-2 on a day when the team honored Bryce Harper’s 2021 MVP campaign before the game. Kyle Gibson allowed only two hits and struck out ten batters and Nick Castellanos belted a home run in the first inning that put the Phillies ahead 2-0.

The Phillies are a better team than their World Series odds suggest and will certainly be able to hang with their NL East rivals, writes Jon Helmkamp of the Post.

Around Major League Baseball

The Cleveland Guardians and Myles Straw agreed to a five-year, $25 million contract extension with team options for the 2027 and 2028 seasons.

Joel Sherman of the Post put forth his predictions for the Cy Young, Rookie of the Year, and MVP in each league. Francisco Lindor was his pick for NL MVP.

Although many might see Aaron Judge turning down the Yankees’ extension offer as risky, Judge is the optimistic type who feels the decision will pay off in the long run, writes Joel Sherman.

Yesterday at Amazin’ Avenue

Chris McShane wrote a review of the first Apple TV+ broadcast, which occurred on Friday for Max Scherzer’s Mets debut.

This Date in Mets History

Tommie Agee hit a home run into the upper deck in left field at Shea Stadium against the Expos on this date in 1969.