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The Mets are complaining about Citi Field again

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The Mets scored lots of runs against the Yankees in Yankee Stadium and then came back to Citi Field and the offense sputtered again, resulting in back-to-back shutouts. Terry Collins was asked about whether the ballpark has something to do with it:

One night after making the claim that three fly-ball outs would have been home runs in Yankee Stadium, he said he believes Citi Field’s dimensions were a major factor in going from scoring 21 runs in the Bronx to zero at home.

“A lot of it has to do with that, for sure,” he said.

If Collins is even acknowledging it with quotes like that you have to figure that a lot of Mets players are complaining about it privately.

Which, at this point, is pretty lame. They’ve been in that park a long time. It plays big, yes, but it plays big for both sides. And the Mets’ side, it should be noted, has not been nearly as talented as the visitors’ side for quite a while now. The last two days they faced Masahiro Tanaka and a fresh bunch of powerful bullpen arms. It happens.

Play better or go get players who are better. Quit putting it on the park.

Report: Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on Sonny Gray

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 06: Sonny Gray #54 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning at the Oakland Coliseum on August 6, 2016 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
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The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.

Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.

Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.

President Obama Welcomes the Cubs to the White House

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As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.

Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.

Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.