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Five issues facing the Mets as the 2019 season begins

Questions about the Amazin's as they prepare to begin a new season

New York Mets Manager Mickey Callaway looks on

New York Mets Manager Mickey Callaway looks on during a split-squad scrimmage Feb. 22, 2019 in Port St. Lucie. Photo Credit: Newsday/Alejandra Villa Loarca

CALLING ON CALLAWAY

Sandy Alderson, the general manager who hired Mickey Callaway as Mets manager, is long gone. If the team has a bad start, how long will Brodie Van Wagenen give Callaway? Among the in-house interim options, if the Mets need them: bench coach Jim Riggleman, quality control coach Luis Rojas and Triple-A manager Tony DeFrancesco.

WHO’S ON FIRST?

New year, same question. The Mets’ best-case scenario probably features first-base prospect Pete Alonso establishing himself as a wrecking ball in the middle of the lineup, but an almost-best-case-scenario features stability and production from anyone at first base, be it Alonso, Dominic Smith or someone else.

WAITING FOR THOR

Noah Syndergaard, 26, has been a sexy preseason Cy Young pick for years. A breakout season by Syndergaard would greatly help the Mets’ playoff chase. The key for him isn’t effectiveness — note his 2.93 career ERA — but staying on the field. He hasn’t made 30 starts since 2016.

O CES, WHERE ART YO?

Yoenis Cespedes’ comeback from twin heel surgeries will be a running theme of the Mets’ season. Will he play in 2019? When? Will he be good?

A NEW INNER CIRCLE

Van Wagenen, the agent-turned-GM, spent the offseason filling out his cabinet, including assistant GMs Allard Baird and Adam Guttridge. When the Mets inevitably hit a snag — the injuries already have started — or need a midseason talent infusion, how will the front office respond?

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