Orioles manager Buck Showalter will meet with Colby Rasmus in the “next few days”

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From Eduardo A. Encina of the Baltimore Sun

The Orioles have focused their search for outfield help on Colby Rasmus, so much so that manager Buck Showalter is set to meet with the free-agent outfielder in the near future, according to an industry source.

That meeting will take place sometime “over the next few days” in Alabama, where Rasmus grew up and spends his winters. Rasmus has flashed tremendous production at various points in his six-year big league career — he was a 4.0 fWAR player in 2010 with the Cardinals and a 4.8 fWAR player in 2013 with the Blue Jays — but consistency has been an issue and so has Colby’s clubhouse demeanor, specifically in St. Louis.

The Orioles want to be sure the 28-year-old outfielder is going to be a good fit before they make him a formal offer. Encina says they’re considering signing Rasmus to a one-year contract in the $6-8 million range.

In the meantime, let’s get a documentary crew down to Alabama to film this Showalter-Rasmus meetup. Whoever produced this video from June is officially hired …

Robinson Canó benched for lack of hustle

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Mets second baseman Robinson Canó is not in the lineup for Monday’s series opener against the division rival Nationals. Per MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo, it’s punishment for failing to run hard on a pair of double plays over the weekend against the Marlins.

Manager Mickey Callaway said, “He understands that it’s unacceptable to not run balls out. He understands that he needs to do that at all times.”

Canó first gaffe came in the top of the seventh inning on Friday, with his team trailing 7-3. Facing Adam Conley, Canó hit a grounder back to the pitcher, who turned a 1-6-3 double play. Canó was only halfway up the first base line when the throw got to first base.

In the fourth inning on Sunday, with the game still scoreless, Canó tapped a Sandy Alcantara pitch in the dirt. Thinking it was foul, Canó didn’t run, but catcher Chad Wallach charged and grabbed the ball while it was still in fair territory. He threw to second base for the force out and then the ball was easily whipped to first base to complete the double play as Canó still thought it was foul.

This likely wouldn’t be as big a deal as it currently is if Canó were actually producing at the plate and if the Mets weren’t in a freefall. Canó has a .245/.293/.374 batting line on the season. Meanwhile, the Mets are 20-25 and riding a five-game losing streak which includes having been shut out in each of their last two games.