Franco, Piazza to take part in Mets September 11th remembrance

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The Mets — and particularly New York native John Franco and first-game-back home run hitter Mike Piazza — played an instrumental role in ushering baseball back into action following the 9/11 attacks. It should not be surprising, then, that the Mets have called back Franco and catcher Mike Piazza to take part in the team’s remembrance of 9/11.  Franco will throw out the first pitch with Piazza behind the dish.

In addition, Mets players will wear caps representing New York police, the fire department and other uniformed officers and first responders during the September 11th game, just as the 2001 team did.

The Mets get a lot of stuff wrong. They’ve rarely gone wrong when it comes to this kind of thing, however.  Nice to see them doing good stuff like this.

Twins designate Phil Hughes for assignment

AP Photo/Ron Schwane
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Phil Hughes was officially designated for assignment by the Twins on Tuesday, the culmination of multiple injury-plagued seasons and poor performance.

Things couldn’t have started out much better for Hughes in Minnesota. The former Yankees hurler joined the Twins on a three-year, $24 million contract in December of 2013 and reeled off a 3.52 ERA over 32 starts during his first season with the club. He set the MLB record (which still stands, by the way) for single season strikeout-to-walk ratio and even received some downballot Cy Young Award consideration. The big year resulted in the two sides ripping up their previous agreement with a new five-year, $58 million deal, but it was all downhill after that.

Hughes took a step back with a 4.40 ERA in 2015 and struggled with a 5.95 ERA over 11 starts and one relief appearance in 2016 before undergoing surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. He wasn’t any better upon his return last year, putting up a 5.87 ERA in nine starts and five relief appearances. Hughes missed time with a biceps issue and required a thoracic outlet revision surgery in August. He began this year on the disabled list with an oblique injury, only to put up a 6.75 ERA over two starts and five relief appearances before the Twins decided to turn the page this week.

Hughes is still owed the remainder of his $13.2 million salary for this year and another $13.2 million next year. The deal didn’t work out as anyone would have hoped, but unfortunately this is another case of health just not cooperating.