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Wednesday reading: Ivan Nova, Derek Jeter, the surging Mets, the Mets' sale and the mighty Marlins

Good start by Ivan Nova last night, before Rafael Soriano gave up the Yankees' lead and then some. I agree with Anthony Rieber's premise. Nova has the potential to be, say, a number three starter for the Yankees, for the entire season.

Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon and Kevin Millwood? Good job getting them in there, and good job by Garcia and Colon so far in big-league opportunities. But it's still hard to believe they're anything more than stopgap solutions.

--On the topics of the Yankees and pitching, good column by Tyler Kepner of the New York Times, who points out that luck is a big factor when it comes to developing pitchers. Developing young pitching is the hardest thing to do in baseball.

--Neil Best got a copy of Ian O'Connor's book on Derek Jeter and offers a quickie review. 

--The Mets won again, and prior to the game, they visited Walter Reed Army Medical Center and avoided any of the nonsense that they stupidly publicized last year.

--The Mets hope to choose a minority buyer in May, Steve Marcus reports. To reiterate something we discussed the other day, the prevailing expectation in baseball circles is that this won't get done without some understanding, written or otherwise, that the buyer would have first dibs at buying the whole team. Which remains a distinct possibility thanks to the Wilpons' massive financial problems.

--The Marlins now occupy first place in the NL East, thanks to their victory over the Dodgers and the Phillies' loss in Arizona. I think the Phillies will prevail, but the Marlins seem like genuine wild-card contenders. The biggest key so far? Their bullpen. The guys there have track records that make you think it can be an asset all season.

--Dodgers owner (In name only) Frank McCourt will meet with Major League Baseball officials today in New York to discuss his situation. I have a sense it will go something like Johnny Drama's audition in "Entourage" here, when Johnny flips out over the guy checking his Blackberry. (Warning: Clip is not kid-friendly).

--Giveaway contest later today.

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