Have to admit, when the Mets signed Ricardo Rincon I wasn’t too excited. There was a glimmer of residual hope from reading about his value in Moneyball, but that was a long time and many injuries ago.
However, Rincon is looking good — really good — in his attempt to make the Mets’ pitching staff. In fact, I have to rate him ahead of Scott Schoeneweis and Willie Collazo — the two LOOGYs who were ahead of him at the start of camp.
As mentioned last week, Rincon changes speeds well and has been spot-on with his location in his most recent outings. I personally witnessed his fastball and judged it to be somewhere in the high 80s and occasionally touching 90-91 with decent movement — a better contrast to The Show’s arrow-straight 85-MPH “fastball”.
Getting Rincon on the 25-man roster is one of the reasons I’d be OK with with putting The Show into a long relief / spot starter role to start the season — if for no other reason than to buy some time to deal Schoeneweis and/or see if Rincon will keep up the effective pitching once the team goes north (OK, technically, they’ll be going south, to Miami, but you know what I mean).