NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — Those ailing stars are almost healthy, and the Mets need them back.


Clay Hensley came off the disabled list to win his first major league start in three years and the Florida Marlins beat the punchless Mets 4-1 on Monday night for their ninth victory in 10 games.

The Mets expect star shortstop Jose Reyes (hamstring) and slugger Carlos Beltran (flu) to return on Tuesday, with third baseman David Wright (back) soon to follow this week.

“They’re the game-changers. They can spark the offense, drive in runs. We’ll be excited to get them back,” Mets starter Chris Capuano said.

But on this night, the Mets looked listless and inept at the plate.

“Any team in this league that loses guys like that are going to have a tough time getting offense generated,” manager Terry Collins said. “But we still have to plug away and put the ball in play and spread the ball around and run the bases a little bit better and be aggressive on the bases, and we just didn’t do that.”

With the trading deadline less then two weeks away and the Mets slipping further out of playoff contention, fans have to wonder: when will the fire sale begin?

“It isn’t just one thing,” outfielder Jason Bay said. “It’s a lot of things catching up to us.”

K-Rod has already been traded to the Brewers, and general manager Sandy Alderson has said repeatedly that future moves depend on how long the team can stay in contention. Beltran and Reyes are thought to be possible trade bait for the cash-strapped franchise.

New York is 12 games behind in the NL East and 9.5 games down in the Wild Card. Following a four-game winning streak, the Mets (47-48) have lost six of eight.

“We’ve gone through periods like this before when we had everybody healthy, and had some great games when we’ve had guys out,” Capuano said. “We’re just going through a little bit of a down spell right now.”

Mike Stanton hit a two-run double off Capuano and slumping Mike Cameron followed with an RBI single for Florida, on the cusp of escaping the NL East cellar.

The Marlins improved to 15-9 under 80-year-old manager Jack McKeon, who took over after Edwin Rodriguez abruptly resigned late in the team’s 1-19 June swoon.

In the makeup of a May 17 rainout, Hensley (1-2) allowed one hit over five scoreless innings against a depleted Mets lineup. It was his 41st big league start — but first since July 24, 2008, for San Diego. The right-hander made 20 relief appearances this season before a sprained shoulder sidelined him June 1.

Willie Harris’ first-inning double was the only hit given up by Hensley in an 84-pitch outing. Michael Dunn, Edward Mujica, Randy Choate and Leo Nunez completed the three-hitter.

For the diminutive Hensley, it was his first win since Aug. 31 against Washington — and first as a starter since Aug. 16, 2007, with the Padres against Colorado.

“It’s definitely a different beast than coming out of the bullpen and I haven’t done it in a while, so I was pretty fired up that first inning,” Hensley said. “But as the game started going on I kind of settled in and relaxed a little bit more.”

Choate gave up a leadoff single and a one-out walk in the ninth before going to a 2-0 count on Lucas Duda. That was enough for McKeon, who strolled to the mound and brought in Nunez as a furious Choate stomped around in the dugout.

“We’re interested in winning,” McKeon said. “We’re not going to worry about hurting anybody’s feelings. I would think that everyone on this club would be interested in winning, and that’s the way it’s going to be. If someone doesn’t like it, that’s too bad.”

Duda drew a walk, charged to Choate, before Bay’s sacrifice fly made it 4-1. With runners at the corners, Nunez retired Ronny Paulino on a slow grounder for his 27th save in 30 tries.

Harris’ double was New York’s lone hit until Nick Evans singled off Dunn to start the seventh. Harris also singled leading off the ninth.

McKeon stacked his lineup with eight right-handed batters, but Capuano (8-9) held Florida hitless until Hanley Ramirez singled on a two-strike pitch with two outs in the fourth. Gaby Sanchez walked and Stanton laced a two-run double to left-center.

Cameron, who began the night 3 for 20 (.150) with Florida, singled to make it 3-0.

“I was upset with giving up those three runs in the fourth because I thought my stuff was good enough to keep them at bay tonight,” said Capuano, who tossed a season-high 7 2-3 innings.

Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada made a spectacular play in the fifth when he ranged far into shallow center field for a fully extended, diving catch of Hensley’s soft looper.

Emilio Bonifacio singled to start the eighth, extending his career-best hitting streak to 17 games, and advanced on Omar Infante’s sacrifice. He stole third and scored on Logan Morrison’s single.

This was the first of seven games between the teams in a span of 17 days. Florida, which has won 13 of 17, made a one-game pit stop in New York between a four-game series at Wrigley Field and the start of a six-game homestand.

“I think we did a good job of not coming out flat and lackadaisical,” Morrison said.

Can the Mets rebound and avoid a fire sale? Sound off in the comments below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (23)
  1. dave bonner says:

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    1. lydia says:

      K-Rod and Beltran and to some extent Reyes were all expected to be dealt by the trading deadline. As soon as K-Rod was traded every idiotic writer started screaming “Fire Sale”
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  2. Richie McLean says:

    SF has 37year old Migel Tajada playing SS and have a starter named Ryan Vogelsong to name 1, and there 3rd baseman is not exactly David Wright, see where I’m going with this ………….. just to show some kind of wheels turning, of course I don’t know who SF can move or not move

  3. Richie McLean says:

    Dr Barry’s personal observations are exactly whats wrong with the NY Mets still hypnotized by Reyes & Wright & Beltron, infielders and outfielders are not the need ASAP, Starting pitching is,not to mention we are closerless now. As far as your GM comment I wouldn’t waste my time dignifying that with a reply as your lost in the abyss of building a team around Reyes & Wright & Beltron LOL wake up Beltron is a DH, Wright is as over rated as it gets, Reyes is a great player that does it ALL except 1 very important thing HE CAN’T PITCH but I know in 1000 years you will never comprehend that because of the hypnotic effect of Beltron, Wright & Reyes

    1. Dr. Barry Rumack says:

      Is Reyes a power hitter who averages over 35 plus hrs a year, does Reyes drive in over 100 runs a year? is Reyes a great hitter with men on base. The answer to all is no, hell no

      Reyes is an above average player, he has great speed, great glove, but has hit over .300 just once in his 9 year MLB career, is a career .289 hitter, has a very low on base percentage of just .326

      Right now Reyes is having a career year, so his numbers look a little better than his career average

      So to say Reyes is a great player who does it all, guess again Einstein.

      I think you saw the cartoon episode of Bug Bunny playing baseball

      Now playing “first base, Jose Reyes’ “second base, Jose Reyes “shortstop, Jose Reyes”, “pitching, Jose Reyes, “catching, Jose Reyes”

      You’re living in a fantasy world; get back to the real world. Reyes, Wright & Beltran have been playing together for well over 6 yrs and have never won.

      What makes you think Reyes can carry a team without those other two; Reyes is not Pujols, A-Rod, Howard, Fielder or Manny Ramirez, not even close to those monsters.

      Mets pitching sucks, their starters would be 4 or 5 for other teams. Mets have no bullpen.

      The Mets have a lot of work to do over the winter.

      Also Einstein, Mets have no money.

      1. Richie McLean says:

        Dr. Barry question are you taking any prescription medication ? or is your reading and comprehension level just very low not to mention apparent delusional episodes ? Nobody said ANYTHING about Reyes carrying a team further more I’m all for getting rid of him as well as Wright, Beltron Etc. You should take a deep breath pull yourself together and get your facts straight before you start rendering insulting Einstein comments buggs bunny etc. Reyes leads off leads the league in hitting & probably stolen bases if not 2nd or 3rd and plays a GREAT shortstop, so, if that does not qualify as doing it all, there is absolutely no doubt that your are in fact mentally challenged and should seek Medical attention as your reply is written living proof you have serious problems

  4. YankeeFan says:

    As long as the Wilpons own this team/business it will never be right. There will always be a crisis of management or cash or leadership, or morale, or whatever. Give up on this franchise as long as these losers keep it – just like Dolan and the Knicks. They didn’t come from baseball, don’t have any business sense to manage a stable franchise and will always kill it.

  5. dabooch says:

    That’s it just as Mike Francesa predicted way in ’08. The core needs to be gutted and disposed of. Jose’ will just be a hood ornament if he’s back next year. They have to concentrate on getting rid of the cancer known as JBay, i believe he has two more years left, he’s another Oliver Perez/Castillo, only a bigger bust.

    1. Richie McLean says:

      Finally somebody with eyes in his head Well spoken dabooch and 110% accurate word for word, amen

  6. Dr. Barry Rumack says:

    From the posting so far, looks like it’s panicville for Mets fans

    Fire sale, trading Beltran, WE NEED PROVEN LIGHTS OUT STARTING PITCHER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! yet the Mets do not have the players needed to get that type of pitcher.

    We need to resign Reyes they say, yet Reyes has been with the team for 9 yrs now & the Mets have not won, why?

    The Mets are currently ½ a game out of last place. 12 games out of 1st & 9 ½ out of the wild card

    Like in the movie Airplane! where the passengers are told to assume crash positions, so they fling themselves sprawling all over the cabin, screaming in terror & agony. This is something the Mets fans need to do.

    This team is going nowhere, was going nowhere, so assume crash positions Mets fans for what’s coming in the next 2 weeks & the next 2 months after.

    1. Richie McLean says:

      Lets see Wright & Reyes are not good enough to get LIGHTS OUT STARTING PITCHING ???????

      1. Dr. Barry Rumack says:

        so you trade 2 top players for pitching, who then will play 3rd & SS? and give the Mets the same offense from both positions. Remember, the Mets as it is have a hard time scoring runs.

        no Beltran, no Reyes, no Wright, means no runs which equals to no wins & many losses.

        and why would the Mets trade their supposedly two best players?

        Also, what team would trade for a player in his last year of his contract, Reyes, knowing he’s testing the market because he’s looking for a huge pay day?

        If there is a pitcher available out there do you really think the Mets would be the ONLY team going after them, also, there are not many available top line pitchers out there, most of them are already tied up for many years & a very high salary.

        So just to make yourselves look smart by throwing out both these players names only shows you need to stick to what you do for a living because you would SUCK as a GM

        Shirley, not surely, you must be joking, and I am calling you Shirley

  7. Richie McLean says:

    Outfielder Carlos Beltran(notes) is in his seventh season of work with the New York Mets and it’s looking likely that he’ll finish out his contract with another organization as the trade deadline gets closer.

    ESPN New York has it from a source that the team is willing to pick up the rest of Beltran’s big-bucks salary this season in exchange for the right talent WHICH BETTER BE A PROVEN LIGHTS OUT STARTING PITCHER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Ron Davis says:

      i hate to lose Beltran but reality is they will not resign him we need prospects and sort of rebuild we need to resign Reyes.

  8. Kurt Spitzner says:

    The team stinks and they are going to sell whatever possible for reasons we are all aware of and you can call it what you like but that will not change the fact that everyone other than Reyes are expendable IF someone wants them bad enough.Why argue over what type of sale when we all know what it is,as well as the ultimate outcome.

    1. Richie McLean says:

      Agreed Kurt…….. I Really want to keep Reyes he’s great !!!!!!!!!, Leads off, league leading hitting, steals bases like Henderson, plays shortstop, Etc. I mean what more can you ask from a position player (infielder) HOWEVER…….What good is all of that without a STARTING ROTATION he could hit 400, steal 200, and catch any ball hit anywhere and it WOULD NOT MATTER why nobody can understand that is beyond me. This team @ the very least 1st & FORMOST needs 2 STUD LIGHTS OUT STARTERS to go with Santana then Gee then you can pick from Neise & capuano for #5. (period) ANY other move is just smoke & mirrors like we got from Minya

  9. gmancat says:

    Do you have any confidence the Mets can pull anything off? Aldeson has one player to trade Beltran. It will be the shortest fire sale in history.

    Cioti Fioeld is depressing to watch,. i have to watch the Yankees now to root aginst them.

    1. Richie McLean says:

      Yes I have alot of confidence now that the Mets have Alderson, as far as 1 player to trade Beltron that’s not accurate

  10. Dominick Mezzapesa says:

    Definition of “Fire Sale:
    “A fire sale is the sale of goods at extremely discounted prices, typically when the seller faces bankruptcy or other impending distress.”

    Since the Mets have not done this, nor are they planning to do this I suggest..

    The writer of this article and any fans using the words “Fire Sale” look up the definition of “Moron” I believe that description will fit these people to a T

  11. Richie McLean says:

    It’s not rocket science what’s wrong with EVERYBODY? Put Santana & Pagan off to the side, Take the rest and turn it into a Lights out starting rotation then build from there with whatever players are left. Immediately get Bay & Pelfrey off the roster.. I repeat the entire team is expendable except Santana & Pagan… That should be Sandy’s primary plan, Building a lights out rotation. (period) That Dominick is the text book definition of a fire sale and Is exactly what is needed to retore this team to respectability & contention I don’t know what writers your referencing but let me ask you are you one of the many hypnotized by Wright & Reyes, Beltron, Pelfrey, ????

    1. Dominick Mezzapesa says:

      Really and who exactly would take Bay’s contract and Pelfrey’s at best inconsistent pitching? What exactly makes a team expendable…let me guess they either
      A) Suck
      B) Over Paid
      C) Both

      Do you think the other 29 teams will say “Oh those guys sucked for the Mets, but they won’t suck for us”

      I am not “Hypnotized” by anything except “Reality” Even if somehow you trade away half the team, what exactly do you think you’ll get in return?

      1. Richie McLean says:

        That would ALL depend on what QUALITY Starting pitching is ACTUALLY available
        that’s the reality #1
        What the other 29 teams think is not even a factor as they both will be most likely thrown in on a package deal with other ESTABLISHED players like some minor league prospect with the Mets eating most of there contract no matter how there dealt #2 Ultimately you would hope to find a team willing to take a risk that the change from NY would be beneficial and get them going in the right direction that formula is not unheard of

  12. Dominick Mezzapesa says:

    Please explain what you mean by “Fire sale” It’s a moronic statement that is used by moronic writers hoping to get a little attention

    K-Rod and Beltran and to some extent Reyes were all expected to be dealt by the trading deadline. As soon as K-Rod was traded every idiotic writer started screaming “Fire Sale”

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