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Around the NL East: Will the Mets ever lose again?

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Around the NL East: Will the Mets ever lose again?

ATLANTA BRAVES

How unlucky is Shelby Miller? The 24-year-old All-Star pitcher has had a solid season, but doesn't have a whole lot to show for it. As crazy as it sounds, Miller is in search for his first win since May 17 vs. the Marlins. The old saying is that you are what your record says you are, but Miller's 5-11 mark is a bit deceiving considering he has a 2.50 ERA. It looked like he was going to get of the snide Wednesday night, being staked to a 3-0 lead vs. the Rockies, but squandered it in the seventh inning and was charged with another loss. A starting pitcher has not started 30 games with a 2.50 ERA or less and won fewer than 10 games since Cole Hamels in 2014. With that in mind, Miller is going to try to avoid being apart of history. 

MIAMI MARLINS 

Given how bad the Marlins have been this season, you'd expect team officials to be realistic about where the club is in its rebuilding process. But apparently not, as manager Dan Jennings said recently the team is "one or two pieces away" from contending. Huh? Miami is on pace for 95 losses, and somehow is just one or two pieces away. Sure, Giancarlo Stanton and Jose Fernandez are blue-chip players that are legitimate cornerstones. But they haven't stayed healthy on a consistent basis, and the Marlins have been known to be frugal in the past when it comes to signing big-name free agents. 

NEW YORK METS 

Nats fans are asking themselves the same question every night: Will the Mets ever lose again? Given the way they're playing right now, it doesn't seem like it. Though they've gone against inferior competition (they're 13-0 against the Marlins, Phillies and Rockies this month), they've taken care of business to increase their NL East lead to 6 1/2 games. It's remarkable that New York's offense -- which had been one of the worst in baseball -- is all of a sudden a juggernaut. They can thank Yoenis Cespedes for that, who is everything GM Sandy Alderson could have hoped for and then some. Since Cespedes has been on board, he's hitting .311 with seven home runs and 21 RBI with a .941 OPS, and the club is 18-6 in the process.  

The only hope the Nats have right now (aside from winning most of the six remaining head-to-head matchups) is if the Mets rotation has to be reworked in September to accommodate the young arms that are reaching innings limits. If that happens, perhaps there's a chance New York can slip into some sort of slump. But given how the offense is on fire, who even knows if that would matter at this point. 

PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES 

This past week marked the end of an era in Philadelphia as Chase Utley was traded to the Dodgers for Darnell Sweeney and pitcher John Richie. We knew this day would come eventually, but it was still a mild surprise that he was moved during the season considering that GM Ruben Amaro stated recently that it was more likely he'd be traded in the offseason. Regardless, this move represents another step towards the retooling of a roster that has desperately needed it for years. 

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With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

WASHINGTON  -- The Washington Nationals say they have agreed to a one-year deal with 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit.

The team announced the move Wednesday, along with placing pitcher Joe Ross on the 60-day disabled list as he recovers from Tommy John surgery in July.

The Nationals didn't release terms of the agreement, though a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Monday that it was for $1 million.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal wasn't official at the time.

MORE NATIONALS: FULL 2018 SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE

Benoit is a right-hander who first reached the big leagues in 2001. 

He has played for eight teams, finishing last year with Pittsburgh.

He has 764 career appearances, going 58-49 with a 3.83 ERA and 53 saves.

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It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

So if you have not heard, Bryce Harper is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2018 season.

All off-season talking heads, baseball aficionados, radio hosts, etc. were speculating on where the outfielder’s destination will be next year.

And we are still a year away from it actually happening.

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Reporting to spring training on Monday, Harper did not waste any time telling the media how his press conferences were going to play out this season.

“If guys do [ask], or talk anything about that, I will be walking right out the door.”

Entering his seventh season with the Washington Nationals, the 25-year-old is coming off the second-best season, statistically, of his career. The 2015 NL MVP has hit .285 in his career, with 150 home runs and 421 RBIs. Unquestionably he is the face of the Nationals’ organization, if not, the best player in the team’s history.

If he does end the season without a contract extension, he will join Rafael Palmeiro, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, and Barry Bonds as the top sought out free agents in MLB history.

One thing is for certain in terms of Harper’s free agency; Harper has given no inclination on where his landing spot will be.  The top three cities are of course his favorite childhood team, the New York Yankees; joining with one of his closest friends with the Chicago Cubs; or just staying with Washington.

Wherever he does land, it does appear that it will be the largest contract given to a free agent ever.

As for now we just wait and direct any of your calls to his agent Scott Boras.

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