The Mets turn to Dillon Gee on Sunday trying to halt a seven-game losing streak, the team's longest since an 11-game skid late in Art Howe's tenure in 2004. Gee opposes Braves right-hander Tommy Hanson in the series finale.
Sunday's news reports:
• Terry Collins tells the Record's Steve Popper he is better at showing restraint now amid adversity than he was during managerial stints with the Astros and Angels in the 1990s. Writes Popper:
The change is a conscious one for Collins. He knows the reputation that he brought into this job with him: that of a high-intensity manager with a short fuse and a short lifespan. He burned out himself or his players were burned out on him in his other managerial stops, in Houston and Anaheim and even in Japan. When he took this job, he was determined to prove that he’d changed. "No doubt about it," he said, laughing and adding, "I haven’t thrown anything yet. I haven’t kicked anything yet. My health’s better, too."
• Chris Young reiterates there's no need, in his mind or in the organization's mind, to get an MRI to see exactly what's going on with what has been labeled biceps tendinitis. "I think at this point, the symptoms are more important than what you can see on the test," Young said after being placed on the disabled list Saturday. "The MRI may or may not show something. It may or may not show something completely different than where I feel the discomfort. We've talked to the doctors, and treating the symptoms, I think, is the better solution at this point." Read more from Young in Newsday, the Times and Star-Ledger.
• A day after the Post reported two of three finalists had bailed -- and the other reported finalist, Steven A. Cohen, wanted to buy a share of Mets debt from banks too -- the Times profiles several of the men who have been linked to interest in the sale (including some of those the Post indicated were now out). Author Richard Sandomir notes having ties to the area is a common trait among bidders. According to the Post, Cohen is the lone remaining bidder from the finalists. Sandomir writes about him:
Cohen, a billionaire hedge fund manager in Connecticut, is 54. He runs SAC Capital Advisors, a powerful $12 billion hedge fund in Stamford, where the former Mets manager Bobby Valentine is the public safety director, and lives in Greenwich, Conn., where Tom Seaver lived before turning to winemaking. Cohen, who is from Great Neck, has a suite at Citi Field.
On another reported candidate, Jason Reese, who has received little ink, Sandomir writes:
He is in the financial world, as chairman of an investment bank called Imperial Capital in faraway Los Angeles. Still, he is a native Long Islander who played goal on the West Babylon High School lacrosse team and later for Yale.
• The Post's Mike Puma opens his game story with this line: The commissioner's office should lodge a complaint against the Mets for impersonating a major league baseball team.
• Jason Bay could be back Tuesday.
• Here's Atlanta's Eric Hinske on teammate Jair Jurrjens tossing seven scoreless innings in his first start after being activated from the disabled list: "The biggest positive today was Jurrjens is healthy. He comes out gives us seven scoreless, pretty much commanded both sides of the dish with all three, four of his pitches. Having him back is huge for the team. ... Seven scoreless your first game after coming off the DL, that’s way more than you can ask for. He’s good, and he’s proved it over the years and that’s going to be a main cog in the middle of our rotation there.”
Read a ton of other postgame quotes on David O'Briens Atlanta-Journal Constitution Braves blog.
• Andy Martino notes that Willie Harris shares the same birthplace -- Cairo, Ga. -- as Jackie Robinson. Martino cites stats that 9.1% of major leaguers on Opening Day rosters last year were African-American, compared with 20 percent five years earlier. Harris tells Martino: "It's bad, man. You look around the league, and you look around the teams, and you're like, 'Man, where is everybody?' It has been decreasing every year."
Harris solution? "We have enough African-Americans in the game that are really good players, that are stars -- the Torii Hunters, the Carl Crawfords, the CC Sabathias, those guys -- that I think baseball should put those guys on the front burner," Harris tells Martino. "Let kids see them robbing home runs, stealing bases. You see LeBron and Dwayne Wade doing all those dunks on TV. Kids see that and say, 'I want to do that.'"
BIRTHDAY: Former catcher Gary Bennett turns 39. Bennett had a pinch-hit single in his lone Mets at-bat in 2001. He is one of 15 former Mets to record a 1.000 batting average, but the only one from that group never to have played for the Mets in the field. -Mark Simon