Where Is Tony Armas, Jr.?

Milk carton with photo of Tony Armas Jr.One of the “big” moves immediately prior to spring training (this one was just a tad less important than the Johan trade) was the signing of Tony Armas, Jr. to a minor league deal. He was handed a spring training invite with the idea that he’d fight for a spot in the Mets bullpen, and also provide the team a veteran spot starter as insurance behind Orlando “Jose de Vidrio” Hernandez.

However, Armas has yet to appear in Port St. Lucie, making it very difficult to win a job. Rumor has it that he was experiencing issues entering the USA from his native Venezuela.

Per Omar Minaya:

“From what I understand, the authorities were asking Tony for his Visa, but all he had was a MasterCard.”

His father Tony Armas, Sr., is worried for his son.

“We are all keeping his fingers crossed, hoping someone will have information about Antonio. We are very concerned.”

Another non-roster invitee, Jose Valentin, was asked if he’d heard from the missing righthander.

“Man, he supposed to meet me tonight at the bar,” Valentin said when questioned at Duffy’s Bar just a mile up the road from Tradition Field. “If my man don’t show up soon, I gotta bell. There are some hotties lined up waiting to twirl my ‘stache,” he added.

Mets manager Willie Randolph was also notified of the disappearance.

“That’s a shame, you know. He was a great rightfielder. He had a rifle out there. I remember him being a star on some bad Oakland teams, and then having a lot of fun putting balls over the Green Monster when he joined the Red Sox. My condolences to his family.”

When it was explained that the subject was Tony Armas, Jr., rather than Tony Armas, Sr., Randolph didn’t miss a beat.

“Oh yeah? Another “arm”, huh? Get it? ARM-as … heh heh … Well if he gets here we have a spot for him. Hey Charlie,” he called out to Charlie Samuels, the Mets’ equipment manager, “where’d you put Sele’s old chair? The nice one with the extra padding we had out in the bullpen?”

Here at MetsToday, our thoughts are with the Armas family while they endure this difficult situation.

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. deadwood for sale! « Smear The Queer March 3, 2008 at 10:19 am
    […] What’s even better about this news is that it would free up two spots in an overly crowded fight for the bullpen. There’s Joe Smith, who, much as I love him (wait you guys didn’t know that? Huh, I thought I’d made that clear), I think really should start the season in AAA, and his performances so far haven’t done anything to change that train of thought/possibility. If you assume Matt Wise was already a lock for the pen, then you’ve got a chance for Steven Register, who impressed Willie Randolph, and who would have to be sent back to the Rockies if he doesn’t make the team. There are the odd possibilities of having the pen include El Duque (he’s either gonna start or be on the DL come March 31st, fucking guarantee) or Mike Pelfrey (I have to assume they would prefer him to start AAA rather than stick him in the bullpen). Then there’s people like Willie Collazo and Juan Padilla and Adam Bostick, which, like, good luck guys. Finally, there’s Tony Armas, Jr., who is nowhere to be found. […]