The Mets are going to turn Jenrry Mejia back into a starter

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This is why Mets fans — at least right-thinking ones — are happy that Sandy Alderson got the gig. He told David Lennon of Newsday today that Jenrry Mejia will not start the 2011 season in the Mets’ bullpen. Alderson said “we don’t want him in our bullpen this year. Our goal is not to use some good arms … on stopgap basis.”

Presumably that means that Mejia will be in Buffalo’s starting rotation. Which is smart because (a) the guy probably needs more developmental time; and (b) it puts a valuable young arm where it should be: in a rotation.

Now, if this serves as a lesson for the Reds handling of Aroldis Chapman and the Rangers’ handling of Neftali Feliz — though they can be on the big club, I imagine — I’ll be a happy man. The bullpen should be a last resort for talents like these guys.  Let them see if they can start first. They’re infinitely more valuable that way.

Astros clinch postseason berth with 11-3 win over Angels

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No surprise here: The Astros are headed back to the postseason to defend their title following a landslide 11-3 win over the Angels on Friday. This figures to be their third playoff run since 2015, though they have yet to wrap up the AL West with a division title.

First baseman Yuli Gurriel led the charge on Friday, smashing a grand slam in the first inning and tacking on a two-run homer in the second and RBI single in the fifth to help the Astros to a seven-run lead. The Angels eventually returned fire, first with Mike Trout‘s 418-foot homer in the sixth, then with an RBI hit from Francisco Arcia in the seventh, but they couldn’t close the gap in time to overtake the Astros.

On the mound, right-hander Gerrit Cole clinched his 15th win of the year after holding the Angels to seven innings of three-run, 12-strikeout ball. His sixth strikeout of the night — delivered on an 83.1-MPH knuckle curveball to Kaleb Cowart — also marked the 1,000th strikeout of his career to date. He was backed by flawless performances by lefty reliever Tony Sipp and rookie right-hander Dean Deetz, both of whom turned in scoreless innings as the offense barreled toward an 11-3 finish with Jake Marisnick‘s sac bunt and George Springer‘s three-run shot in the eighth.

Despite having qualified for the playoffs, the Astros still carry a magic number of 6 as they look to clinch a third straight division title. They’re currently up against the Athletics, who entered Friday’s contest against the Twins just four games back of first place in the AL West.