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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Mets Nightly News and Notes: Baxter, Broxton, Batista, Harvey, Wheeler, Trading for Starting Pitching

Mets Nightly News and Notes:

After getting rained out Monday, Mike Baxter resumed his rehab assignment with Class A St. Lucie.

Baxter, returning from a displaced right collarbone, went 2-for-6 with two doubles, a walk and two RBIs on Tuesday while serving as the designated hitter in a doubleheader. It was his second game since beginning the rehab assignment Sunday.

Position players are allowed a maximum of 20 days on a rehab assignment before being activated, so Baxter is on the clock.

Sandy Alderson said the Mets are focused on acquiring relief help at the trade deadline, much more so than a righty bat.

A major league source said one arm to which the Mets are paying close attention is Kansas City closer Jonathan Broxton.

Broxton, 28, is 1-1 with a 2.14 ERA and 22 saves in 33 appearances with Kansas City. He is making $4 million this season.

Sandy Alderson said Miguel Batista will start over Matt Harvey on Saturday against the Los Angeles Dodgers, as the Mets prioritize Harvey's development over immediate major league needs.

Alderson suggested anyway that Batista was the best choice to face L.A., although the GM did not preclude Harvey starting during the ensuing road trip to the West Coast, perhaps in San Diego the first weekend in August.

Alderson added that Double-A pitcher Zack Wheeler under no scenario he can envision will pitch at Citi Field in 2012, although a move to Buffalo will occur "relatively soon."

On the trade front, Alderson said he is not pursuing starting pitchers, saying it would be a waste of resources given other team needs. He said the clear-cut priority is relief help.

The GM went on to say that acquiring a righty hitter is not a major priority, either. Alderson said the Mets will be reluctant to part with any prospect who can help in 2013 or 2014.

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