Before and after: Dmitri Young lost a TON of weight

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During his 13-year MLB career Dmitri Young was one of the largest players in baseball, often struggling with his weight while being listed at 6-foot-2, 295 pounds.

Now he’s 40 years old and Young not only slimmed down in an effort to deal with his diabetes, the man nicknamed “Da Meat Hook” shocked people with how skinny he looks while saying hello to some friends at the Reds-Nationals game in Cincinnati game over the weekend.

Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post passes along quotes from a radio interview in which Young said he’s currently 205 pounds and “did it the right way” by “doing a lot of cardio” and then, once some of the weight came off, “working out” more seriously.

As someone who lost 150 pounds a few years ago and has been up and down several times since then, I commend Young on going with the diet-and-exercise route. It’s the hard way, but it’s also the most rewarding way and, hopefully in his case, the way to long-term success.

(Also, for a guy who dropped nearly 100 pounds that’s a pretty cool bacon shirt he’s wearing in the picture.)

2017 Preview: The American League East

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League East

Boston may have the most talent and, in Mookie Betts, the best player. The Yankees have the best farm system. Baltimore has all the dingers and the best closer. Toronto may have the best collection of heels, at least in the view of fans of the other AL East teams.  The Rays have the best . . . hmm. I’ll get back to you on that.

Anyway, here are our previews for the American League East:

Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.