Mets Sign John Lannan
The Mets have signed lefthanded pitcher John Lannan to a minor-league contract and invited him to spring training.
It’s about time that Long Beach, Long Island native John Lannan has joined the Mets — right?
In addition to being a local boy, I’ve been a personal fan of Lannan because, like me, he played his college ball in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC). Not that you care, but in case you do, Lannan “stayed home” (sort of) by playing at Siena College after starring at Chaminade High School in Mineola. I suppose attending C.W. Post would have truly been staying home, but at least he remained in New York State.
But I digress …
Lannan had flashes of brilliance early in his career, and made 33 starts in 2011, spinning 184 innings, winning 10 games, and posting a 3.70 ERA for a .500 Nationals club. However, his mechanics were always dangerous, and he started having elbow issues in 2009 — possibly earlier. Although he never had Tommy John surgery, Lannan has struggled with strains of the flexor tendon in his elbow for years, an issue that may have also resulted in shoulder fatigue (he changed his arm angle to alleviate pain in the elbow). He’s also had knee problems, and last year with the Phillies, he suffered a debilitating quadriceps strain that kept him out of a big chunk of the season.
Despite his physical woes, I like this signing — it was one I’d hope to see a year ago. He’ll compete for the fifth-starter spot in the rotation, and though he may not go north with the big club come April, he’s exactly the type of veteran starter to stash in AAA as depth that undoubtedly will be needed at some point in the season. Signing him to a minor-league deal means the Mets have no risk, and there’s a decent chance that he stays healthy and holds down the #5 spot. If he does, expect him to be a five-inning pitcher who will keep his team in the game at least that long, and may pitch through the sixth frame on occasion.
What’s your thought? Are you happy to see John Lannan in Flushing’s fold? Why or why not? Answer in the comments.