2011 Analysis: D.J. Carrasco

After being non-tendered by his previous clubs two years in a row, D.J. Carrasco signed the first multi-year contract of his life last winter — a two-year, $2.4M deal with the Mets that included another $150K in performance bonuses. At the time, it was seen as a prudent move by the new Mets front office, in that it was an inexpensive contract for someone who was seen as a reliable, above-average middle reliever. Additionally, there was talk of Carrasco providing additional value as a spot starter.

As it turned out, Carrasco failed as a reliever and in his one and only start at the big-league level. He spent part of the year in AAA Buffalo in an effort to regain his stuff. At times, Carrasco was effective, but for the most part he was middling at best, and overall underwhelming. By August, he was all but a lost cause, and transformed himself into exclusively a submarine pitcher in a desperate attempt to become relevant again. Unfortunately, the experiment failed miserably, and by the end of the season he was nothing more than a mop-up reliever.

2012 Projection

It’s hard to imagine where D.J. Carrasco fits into the Mets’ plans next year. The submarine experiment was successful in proving he is not a submariner. He delivers the ball from several different angles, but inadequately from all of them. The Mets owe him another year and $1.4M, and that’s enough reason to keep him at the AAA level for depth and to hold out hope that he’ll figure out something that can be used in MLB again. To me it makes sense to plan the 2012 pitching staff without him, and if Carrasco can provide something, it will be a pleasant surprise.


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. Joe November 1, 2011 at 8:55 am
    I still think it was “prudent” to think before the season he would be adequate, which is all the team was looking for & it is not out of the realm of possibility that he could give you something next year & it was reasonable to think he would give you something last. And, the price was right. The second year is debatable but honestly, in play baseball money, 1.2M is trivial either way.
  2. argonbunnies November 3, 2011 at 2:18 pm
    Disappointing. The cheap 2-yr deal and unusual pitching style had me excited. But he seemed to have lost his former ability to get hard, late movement on his pitches. Everything kinda floated up there.

    I hope he spends the offseason focusing on hand & finger stuff so he can re-find the spin. Maybe he and Arroyo can form a support group.