PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- He may be from Long Island, making him more of a New Yorker than anyone else on the Mets' spring roster. But John Lannan is not about to go searching for a summer home around the city just yet.
"That would be like the ultimate jinx," Lannan said.
A leading candidate for the Mets' fifth-starter job, Lannan recalls being told that he won a similar competition toward the end of Nationals camp in 2012. So Lannan went apartment hunting in Washington, signing a lease the same day the Nats changed their minds and named Ross Detwiler the fifth starter instead.
Lannan's landlord was kind enough to let him out of the lease, but the veteran pitcher now understands what sort of karma can result from such actions. With that in mind, Lannan -- a Long Island native and current Florida resident who hopes to move back to New Jersey in the future -- will not call up any New York City realtors until he has a locker with a nameplate above it in the Citi Field clubhouse.
Lannan will start for the first time this spring on Saturday against the Marlins.
Collins: New replay rules won't eliminate ejections
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Expanded instant replay may ultimately result in less controversy during games this season, but Mets manager Terry Collins still envisions plenty of ejections in his future.
"I think you're going to still see a number of ejections, I really do," said Collins, who was tossed from a relatively tame three games last season. "We've got some guys, like myself, who can get fiery at times."
The league's new replay rules, which will also apply to MLB's partial ban of collisions at home plate, allow managers to challenge certain plays during games. The Mets are currently deciding who in their organization will watch television replays to determine what is worth a challenge, so that when Collins emerges from the dugout to argue, he already knows if he should ask umpires to go to the tape.
"You've got to have someone on that computer who has the ability to replay this stuff in a hurry," Collins said, joking that PR director Jay Horwitz, a notorious technophobe, will not fulfill the role. "You can get this information within 10 seconds. If there's a close play, all you've got to do is say, 'Stop, replay,' and bingo, you've got the answer."
Teams are expected to test the new replay rules during Spring Training games, though they will not have as many television camera angles available to them as during the regular season.
d'Arnaud would love to play with brother Chase
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- It's a long shot, he knows. But Travis d'Arnaud has of course considered the possibility that he could soon be teammates with his older brother, Chase, for the first time since Little League.
The Pirates designated Chase d'Arnaud for assignment over the weekend and reportedly placed him on waivers, meaning all big league clubs are eligible to claim him. Though no Mets official has acknowledged interest, the team could conceivably acquire the utility infielder to compete with Anthony Seratelli and Omar Quintanilla for a bench role. Such a move would make the d'Arnaud brothers teammates for the first time since Chase was 12 and Travis was 10.
"That would be so crazy," Travis d'Arnaud said.
Even if the Mets did decide to take a flyer on Chase d'Arnaud, of course, they would only earn his rights if no team with a worse record also claimed him. That might not happen, considering Chase d'Arnaud is a 27-year-old former fourth-round Draft pick who stole 34 bases for Triple-A Indianapolis in 2012.
But as long as the elder d'Arnaud remains unemployed, Travis' pipe dream will live on.
"He's not worried," the Mets catcher said of Chase. "I'm not worried. We're both trying to look at it as an opportunity."
Collins has not drawn up his lineup for next month's Las Vegas exhibition games just yet, but he knows David Wright, Curtis Granderson and Travis d'Arnaud will all attend the games. "I'm a true believer in making sure we bring the proper amount of starters," Collins said, referencing Major League Baseball's often-violated mandate that teams bring at least four starting position players on all spring road trips. Second baseman Daniel Murphy, whose wife is expecting a baby boy in April, will not attend the trip.