Morning Briefing: Beware any 3 AM calls


FIRST PITCH: The Mets may be a little groggy for Friday night’s game in Anaheim.

After winning a rubber game against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field, the Mets flew across the country and were not due to land at LAX until about 5 a.m. ET. They then faced another hour drive to their hotel in Orange County.

Dillon Gee (0-0, 4.50 ERA) starts the series opener against the Los Angeles Angels at 10:05 p.m. ET. Gee opposes left-hander Tyler Skaggs (1-0, 0.00).

The Mets will get the use of the DH this weekend. Josh Satin is due to start one game at first base -- probably the series opener against the southpaw Skaggs, although the Mets also see left-hander C.J. Wilson on Sunday.

The Mets last visited Anaheim six years ago. It was after a June 16, 2008 victory in that series opener that the Mets fired Willie Randolph and pitching Rick Peterson at 3 a.m. ET.

Randolph had implored the Mets to fire him before getting on the plane for California if the intent was to imminently dismiss him anyway, but Mets PR people advised to wait until the team headed west rather than terminate Randolph in New York on Father’s Day.

Friday’s news reports:

Juan Lagares delivered a tiebreaking RBI single in the seventh and Carlos Torres, Kyle Farnsworth and Jose Valverde combined to retire the final 11 Braves batters as the Mets won, 6-4, Thursday. Eric Young Jr. proved a sparkplug, going 3-for-5 with three steals and four runs scored. Jenrry Mejia allowed four runs in five innings, including a pair of homers to Justin Upton.

Writes columnist Kevin Kernan in the Post:

They have bungled the first base situation, one of their big free agent signings -- Chris Young -- has yet to play a game and their $60 million man -- Curtis Granderson -- is struggling with a .125 average and owns 11 strikeouts in 32 at-bats. Yes, this is the tiniest of samples, but so far the sample reads: Jason Bay.

Read game recaps in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Post, Daily News, Times, Star-Ledger, Record, Newsday and at MLB.com.

• Terry Collins insisted Lucas Duda will continue to get the bulk of the playing time at first base. When the Mets face right-hander Jered Weaver on Saturday, both Duda and Ike Davis may play, with one serving as DH. Read more in the Star-Ledger, Record, Daily News, Newsday and at MLB.com.

Chris Young, on the disabled list with a right quadriceps strain, played five innings in an extended spring training game Thursday in Florida. He should begin a rehab assignment soon with Triple-A Las Vegas. Young is eligible to be activated from the DL next Friday.

• Mr. Met once was threatened by the Secret Service, when President Bill Clinton visited Shea Stadium, according to a book excerpt cited in the Daily News.

• Jacob deGrom allowed one run in five innings for Las Vegas. Darin Gorski struck out 10 batters in Binghamton’s 9-1 win against New Hampshire. Jairo Perez went 5-for-6 and Bronx native T.J. Rivera had five RBIs in St. Lucie’s 13-3 win against Jupiter. Stefan Sabol, Jeff McNeil and Jared King had three RBIs apiece as Savannah beat Rome, 12-5. Read the full minor-league recap here.

• Former Mets manager Jerry Manuel will help lead an initiative to increase diversity in baseball.

From the bloggers ... Faith and Fear can't get enough Lagares.

BIRTHDAYS: Ex-Mets pitchers Bret Saberhagen and Wally Whitehurst turn 50. ... Bobby M. Jones is 42.


YOU’RE UP: Can the Mets depend on Kyle Farnsworth and Jose Valverde at the back end of the bullpen?