Who’d have thought the Post’s Larry Brooks would be into this kind of thing? As opposed to, say, moving the slumping Mets’ 1B Carlos Delgado lower in the batting order, much as Willie Randolph did before last night’s 3-0 defeat of the Braves.

Last night, Delgado went the other way twice against a shift to right, collecting a pair of sharp singles to left in the Mets’ 3-0 victory after being informed by Randolph before the game.

“Sometimes when you’re a big power hitter you fall back into who you are instead of doing what’s necessary,” Randolph said afterward. “We talked before the game about taking little bites, about taking advantage of what they give you, taking advantage of that big hole.

“He’s our fourth hitter and he’s going to be our fourth hitter. You can’t hide from that.”

“I know he’s going to get going and be back in his customary spot. He’s going to carry us. I feel it in my bones.”

Such is the Mets’ depth that they still lead the league in runs despite getting next to nothing from their cleanup hitter. Such are the options available to Randolph that he could present an order against left-hander Chuck James that had Shawn Green batting second, David Wright fourth and Paul Lo Duca fifth without picking it out of a hat.


Despite Damion Easley’s remarkable production in place of The ‘Stache, Gotham Baseball’s Mark Healey suggests there’s possible Mets interest in the Twins’ Luis Castillo.

Talk around baseball of late is that popular GM-manager combo of Terry Ryan and Ron Gardenhire in Minnesota are under fire from ownership. It’s also being said that if the Twins aren’t within five games of the AL Central at the July 31st trade deadline, that Ryan will be forced to deal away some of his higher-priced players

The question is, are the Mets interested? Given the likley departure of Torii Hunter, Lastings Milledge would be a player that the Twins would be interested in, for sure.

However, Milledge’s value is far greater on the open market, and any deal that included him — to any team — would have to include a top of the rotation starter. Since Johan Santana isn’t going anywhere, it’s hard to see a match here.