Mets GM says time running out on team

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NEW YORK (AP) - Sandy Alderson all but said "tick, tick, tick."

Mets players are running out of time to turn around their season, and New York's general manager took the blame as the person in charge of assembling the roster.

"When you're scoring runs at the anemic rate that we have, something hasn't worked. So from that standpoint, I take full responsibility for where we are," he said Tuesday during a telephone news conference. "I'm not happy about it. But at the same time the job now is to figure out how to fix it and improve it. And that's what we're focused on over the next several weeks."

New York started 11-1 but has fallen to 28-35 and fourth in the NL East, 8 games behind first-place Atlanta. The injury-ravaged Mets entered Tuesday 28th in runs and 25th among the 30 teams in batting average at .230. The offense has been unable to support a pitching staff that was 15th in ERA at 4.03.

As the All-Star Game next month and the July 31 trade deadline approach, Alderson would consider retooling if the record doesn't improve.

"We have to at least be thinking about what our options may be or what our situation is as we get close to the trade deadline," he said. "The focus is on the short term and improving the results on the field, but obviously we're cognizant of the baseball calendar and where we need to be in a few weeks and what the options are for change as we get into July."

He hasn't determined the extent of possible turnover.

"Could we get younger very quickly? Probably yes," Alderson said. "Then the question really is between where we are now and what we think we can be next season and years after that I think, again, is a function of at least of some extent, not totally, but at least of some extent, of what happens over the next few weeks."

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