Archive: March 15th, 2011

Mets Bullpen Outlook

NOTE: this is a post by Matt Himelfarb; please direct your comments to him.

As expected, just about every pitcher this side of Ambiorix Burgos is getting the chance to spend a cup of coffee in big league spring training, before their inevitable release or assignment to minor league camp.

$12 million in due salary has delayed Oliver Perez’s negotiations with the Newark Bears by about three weeks. Guys like Manuel Alvarez and John Lujan, meanwhile, were cursed with several remaining option years, precluding them from seriously competing for a spot in the opening day bullpen.

The most intriguing underdog is Jason Isringhausen, who is making a somewhat romantic comeback attempt after pitching all of 8 innings in the big leagues since 2008. Izzy’s chance of making the big club appear slim, however. At the end of the day, Izzy’s best asset is nostalgia, and sentimentalism alone is not going to bring him north. In fact, as if barely pitching the last two years did not taint his prospects enough, Izzy has not really pitched that great, period, since 2004.

Hence, barring any injuries, the Mets bullpen will most likely include: Francisco Rodriguez, Bobby Parnell, Taylor Buchholz, and. D.J. Carrasco. That leaves three spots open, at least one of which will go to a lefty, leaving the Mets essentially picking between the lesser of two evils:

1) Keeping both