Sixty million over four years got it done for Derek Lowe with the Braves. The Mets were a year and $24 million short. Oliver Perez, who should feel unwanted right about now, wants four years and the Mets are at three.
Ben Sheets is still out there, injured arm and all. So are Pedro Martinez and Randy Wolf. Whatever the signing, it has been a disappointing winter for the Mets regarding their starting pitching.
The Mets entered the offseason wanting to address their bullpen, but that includes getting starters capable of eating innings. It is not unfair to attach questions to four of the five starters after Johan Santana.
Mike Pelfrey: Will he continue to progress or hit a wall, which often happens in a pitcher’s development.
John Maine: Coming off surgery.
Tim Redding: A .500 pitcher last year with a lifetime losing record. OK, for a fifth starter, but the expectations could rise.
Fifth starter: To be determined. Jon Niese will compete. Bringing back Martinez might have to be the plan.
If GM Omar Minaya isn’t confident, then there’s no reason for you to be.
Minaya placed the odds at “50-50” the Mets will add a bigger-named pitcher than Tim Redding, saying, “you’re never too confident.”
With reports of the Braves having a $60 million package on the table for Derek Lowe, and Oliver Perez wanting four years while the Mets prefer three, they could be forced to fall back on Randy Wolf and Pedro Martinez.
I like Redding as a fifth starter, but if all this pans out, he could end up fourth which leaves the Mets vulnerable in the back end of the rotation.
All that work fixing the bullpen could be wasted if twice a week the Mets aren’t going deep into the game with their starter.
Assuming this is it, that Tim Redding is the last offseason piece to the Mets’ puzzle, are you satisfied with the job general manager Omar Minaya has done this winter? What kind of grade would you give him?
It’s almost around the corner. Spring training. I look forward to it every year. Especially at the end of the week when the temps could be in single digits.
It ends a little later this spring because of the World Baseball Classic. And, for the Mets it ends with two games against the Red Sox in a Citi Field tune-up. Here’s the complete schedule.
Feb 25 Baltimore at Ft. Lauderdale
Feb 26 Florida at PSL
Feb 27 St. Louis at PSL
Feb 28 Detroit at Lakeland
Mar 1 Houston at PSL
Mar 2 OFF DAY
Mar 3 St. Louis at PSL
Mar 4 Washington at Viera
Mar 5 Italy (WBC) at PSL
Mar 6 St. Louis at Jupiter
Mar 7 Washington at PSL
Mar 8 University of Michigan at PSL
Washington at Viera
Mar 9 Baltimore at PSL
Mar 10 Washington at Viera
Mar 11 OFF DAY
Mar 12 Florida at PSL
Mar 13 Detroit at Lakeland
Mar 14 Washington at PSL
Mar 15 Florida at Jupiter
Mar 16 OFF DAY
Mar 17 Atlanta at Disney
Mar 18 Atlanta at PSL
Mar 19 Houston at PSL
Mar 20 Baltimore at Ft. Lauderdale
Mar 21 Atlanta at Disney
Mar 22 Atlanta at PSL
Mar 23 OFF DAY
Mar 24 Houston at Kissimmee
Mar 25 Detroit at PSL
Mar 26 St. Louis at Jupiter
Mar 27 Washington at PSL
Mar 28 Florida at PSL
Mar 29 Baltimore at Ft. Lauderdale
Mar 30 Baltimore at PSL
Mar 31 Florida at Jupiter
Apr 1 St. Louis at Jupiter
Apr 2 Baltimore at PSL
Apr 3 Boston at Citi Field
Apr 4 Boston at Citi Field