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New York Mets: Ranking the 10 Biggest Challenges Heading into Spring Training

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New York Mets: Ranking the 10 Biggest Challenges Heading into Spring Training
Terry Collins has his team ready to start Spring Training next week (photo by Marc Serota/ The New York Times)

The New York Mets begin their spring training schedule next week when they play their first game on March 5. When they do, the team will have to answer several questions in the next few weeks.

Several new players will need to establish themselves, while others will have to bounce back from injury. Among the major issues they face on the field is seeing where their ace Johan Santana is in his recovery.

In addition, Daniel Murphy and Ike David must prove their health. Other veterans like Jason Bay and David Wright must show they are not on the decline. Younger players like Lucas Duda and Josh Thole have to show they're the real deal.

On the pitching side, they have even more challenges. While the aforementioned Santana recuperates, the starting staff must bounce back from a season without him.

Pitchers like R.A. Dickey and Mike Pelfrey must recover from a tough season. Are Jon Niese and Dillon Gee the real deal? How will the bullpen shape out with their new additions? Who will emerge as the closer? The setup man?

These are all questions that will be answered in the next four weeks.

Let's take a closer look at some of these issues more specifically. 

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