Mets likely to introduce new manager on Tuesday

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The Mets interviewed Bob Melvin and Chip Hale on Wednesday for their managerial opening.  On Thursday, they’ll interview the other two finalists — Wally Backman and Terry Collins.  Assuming all goes according to plan and there’s no need for an abrupt schedule change, the Mets will then announce their new new skipper at a press conference Tuesday.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson relayed this all to ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin late Wednesday evening.

Alderson and Co. went on an extensive search for Jerry Manuel’s replacement this fall, interviewing over 10 candidates in all.  They settled on four finalists this week at the GM Meetings in Orlando, Florida and by Thursday evening all four of those men will have met and spoken with Mets officials.

As of now, there isn’t a clear front-runner, but SI.com’s Jon Heyman and a few other New York-based writers suspect that Melvin will win the job.  He certainly seemed confident after his interview Wednesday, telling reporters that “we have the pieces to compete.”

The Angels were the first team to use up all of their mound visits

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Last night’s Angels-Astros game was a long affair with a bunch of homers and the use of 11 pitchers in all. The Angels used six pitchers and all of that business led to plenty of conferences. Six, in fact, which is their allotment under the new rule capping mound visits. As far as I can tell, that makes the Angels the first team to use up all of their mound visits since the advent of the rule.

Sadly, they did not try to go for a seventh, thereby testing the currently unknown limits of the rule. Umpires have been instructed to not allow additional mound visits, but they cannot issue balls or tackle anyone or anything to enforce it. Presumably, if Maldonado had walked out to talk to Cam Bedrosian about the weather or where he was going to dinner after the game, the home plate umpire would’ve simply done the old Robin Williams English policeman’s bit of yelling “Stop! . . . or I shall yell ‘Stop!’ again!” Maybe a fine would issue later, but we’ll never know.

At least until someone breaks the limit. And we know someone will, right? We should have a betting pool on who does it.