Mets Sign Buddy Carlyle

Big news for the New Year! The Mets have signed reliever Buddy Carlyle to a minor-league contract and invited him to spring training.

With that, the Mets’ offseason to-do list appears to be done!

In other news, the Phillies have signed Aaron Harang to a one-year, $5M contract. The Braves claim they offered Harang a similar deal. Why would the veteran right-hander — who is a “fly ball” pitcher — opt for a team destined to finish last that plays in a homer-friendly park? Either the Braves’ definition of “similar” was a few million less, or, maybe Harang felt there was a better opportunity to pitch every fifth day for the Phillies.

Also, the White Sox have signed Emilio Bonifacio to a one year, $4M contract that includes an option for a second year. The speedy utility man is a nice addition to a championship team’s bench. As much as I love Bonifacio, and as much as I think he’d be a great fit in a large park like The Field At Shea Bridge, the Mets likely were not a good fit. Based on their management of one-time Gold Glove candidate Eric Young, Jr., my guess is that Bonifacio would have been overused / over-exposed. To me, Bonifacio can be successful when used similarly to the way Tony LaRussa managed Super Joe McEwing, or how Bobby Valentine put Desi Relaford in situations to succeed.

Finally, the Kansas City Royals signed Ryan Madson to a minor-league deal that includes an invite to spring training. This one I don’t understand from either point of view. Madson hasn’t pitched since 2011 due to elbow issues, but his success prior makes him coveted — I get that. What I don’t get is the already-bullpen-rich Royals auditioning yet another reliever, and, Madson auditioning for a team that likely has no room for him at the big-league level. I’m surprised someone in need of relief help, such as the Dodgers, didn’t take a flyer on Madson. But then again, we don’t know what considerations go into these deals, on both sides. Maybe it had something to do with the personal connections; according to Jerry Crasnick, “…Jim Fregosi Jr., now a special assistant to Royals general manager Dayton Moore, was the scout who signed Madson out of the 1998 first-year player draft with the Phillies. Mike Arbuckle, currently a senior advisor in Kansas City, was Philadelphia’s scouting director in 1998 when the Phillies selected Madson in the ninth round of the draft.”

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. DaveSchneck January 6, 2015 at 9:30 am
    Nothing wrong with bringing back Buddy…he knows the Vegas-Flushing routine.

    Smetimes your team’s chances improve by doing nothing. I think the Philly signing of Harang adds another win to the Mets projection, and it takes one more starter off the market to compete with Gee/Colon. I think Rip Van Alderson has set his alarm clock to the 3rd week of January to reduce that payroll a tad before the season begins. And, to see if Drew will accept his offer, you know, the one in which Sandy expects Drew to pay the Mets for a roster spot to re-establish his market value.

    • Dan B January 6, 2015 at 10:31 am
      If Drew would pay the Mets $5 million to play for them next year then maybe the Mets could afford another reliever. I am kidding, of course. The Mets would pocket that money.
  2. Bat January 6, 2015 at 12:29 pm
    I don’t understand the “one-time Gold Glove candidate” language introducing Eric Young?
    • Joe Janish January 6, 2015 at 12:46 pm
      At the end of the 2013 season, GKR as well as the official blog of the New York Mets launched a campaign pushing Young’s Gold Glove candidacy. He turned out to be a finalist.

      Was there another time that Young was a GG candidate that I may have missed?

  3. Bat January 6, 2015 at 3:03 pm
    I am shocked that anyone could think Eric Young Jr. should be a Gold Glove candidate.

    I hadn’t previously heard of this.

    Based on the Mets games I’ve seen during the time EYJ was on the team, I would rate him as a whole (range, strength of arm, accuracy of arm, etc.) a slightly below average OF.

    I like the quality of GKR’s analysis quite a bit more than Joe based on some of his criticism of them (he does not seem to mind them from an entertainment perspective but seems to think the quality of their comments are less than stellar), but to me this is one of the worse things they’ve said if this is true.

    For what it’s worth, Fangraphs also doesn’t like EYJ’s defense rating him as -6.3 for 2013.

    Plus, I mean even if EYJ was awesome in the field (which he isn’t), he was basically always a part-time player and I object to guys getting the Gold Glove who aren’t full-time players.

    Thanks for telling me about this Joe. I never heard this previously.

  4. DanS January 7, 2015 at 9:24 am
    Yankees pay Drew to play a little second and short and keep A-Rod company on the bench. Wilmer Flores the job really is yours…