From Bruce Allen’s Boston Sports Media :

So you think you know what Dan Shaughnessy is going to write, even before you read his column?

We’re going to have a little contest. Next week, the New York Mets come into town, and of course with them will be Pedro Martinez. We know Shaughnessy will write a column about the return of Pedro. You probably have a good idea what it is going to read like.

So write it.

That’s right, write Shaughnessy’s column about Pedro’s return, complete with all the phrases and references he’s bound to use. When you’re done, email it to me. I’ll go through them, and when Dan’s column appears, (Right now Pedro is lined up to pitch on Wednesday) whoever’s column is the most like Dan’s in both style and substance will win a prize. I’m not sure what the prize will be, but it will be a nice prize. The winning column may also be published here on the site, so keep that in mind. I reserve the right to publish any entries received.

While hailing Carlos Beltran’s stellar 2006 campaign (“today, no one mentions the $119-million contract. That’s because in baseball’s inflated dollars, he is worth every dime, nickel and penny the Mets are paying him, and then some.”), Newsday’s Jon Heyman reveals the Mets’ CF has a pair of poodles named Zion and Toy. Even Michael Strahan thinks that sounds excessive. Heyman, taking a tip from this corner in proposing Beltran as an alternative MVP candidate to the universally-creamed over David Wright, is leaving Newsday for a gig at Sports Best of luck to him — without Jimmy Breslin and Marvin Kitman, Newsday isn’t the same. Without Heyman, they’ll have to employ a sports columnist whose byline photo was actually taken within the last decade.

Former Mets trainer Bob Sikes regales his lucky readers with the tale of reliever Roger McDowell giving Sikes two hot feet. No truth to the rumor that McDowell’s current stewardship of the Braves’ pitching staff will soon result in self-immolation.