Not surprisingly, Jamie Moyer was the one bumped from the rotation to make room for diva Pedro Martinez’s return Wednesday at Chicago from the disabled list. Moyer will move to the bullpen when pitches.
MARTINEZ: Diva gets ball tomorrow.
That was the inevitable decision when the Phillies said rookie J.A. Happ (8-2, 2.74) would stay in the rotation.
As bad as the Mets’ starting rotation has been, I’m glad they opted to pass on re-signing Martinez, whose time had come and gone in New York.
Do you think the Phillies will disrupt their chemistry by shuffling the rotation to accommodate Martinez?
I believe that’s entirely possible.
With a little less than three weeks before Opening Day, some issues the Mets opened camp with are starting to take focus. Others remain blurred.
Johan Santana, it seems, is on track. My philosophy on injuries is to assume the worst until the player proves otherwise. After a strong 56-pitch outing in a minor league game yesterday, the reports on Santana and his slider are good.
The fifth starter was another issue, and candidates Freddy Garcia (14.40 ERA this spring) and Livan Hernandez (3.72) will work today against the Braves. Garcia, obviously needs a complete turnaround to stay in contention, but coming off injuries, he’s likely to open the season with an extended spring training.
Hernandez has been mostly good, but still hasn’t blown Jerry Manuel away as to where the job is his. And, until he does, there will always be those Pedro Martinez whispers that won’t go away.
Jon NIese takes his 9.00 ERA to the mound today against the Braves. Niese is still in the hunt for the fifth spot in the rotation, but hasn’t overly impressed in his opportunity.
I’m still putting what’s left of my money on Livan Hernandez to win the role. That is, of course, if the Mets don’t pick somebody else up, such as re-signing Pedro Martinez.
Nobody has blown away the field. Tim Redding is hurting and could open the season on the DL. Freddy Garcia? That ended quickly.
I like what I saw of Niese last season, but he also had those moments that said he wasn’t ready. I’d hate for him to come up and get rocked the way Mike Pelfrey did. If there is a viable major league option to Niese, the Mets will take it.
Tom Glavine has a job this summer. He’ll make $1 million this year from the Braves. It’s what you get at the end of your career when you’ve already locked up the Hall of Fame and just want to play.
Pedro Martinez is auditioning with Team Dominican Republic. There are no guarantees for him.
Martinez took a shot at Glavine the other day when talking about his contract: “If I wanted to pitch that bad, I probably would. But I don’t think I’m in that stage. I believe I’m very comfortable. I’m not going to let anybody disrespect my abilities or the way I am. I wouldn’t say I would want to pitch that bad.”
Wow. That’s high heat. Glavine and Martinez were never best buds when the two were on the Mets.
I had the sense Glavine resented some of the things Martinez got away with, such as dictating his own training. I also had the sense Martinez didn’t want to share billing with Glavine.
HERNANDEZ: Adds depth to rotation.
The Mets’ never-ending search to add pitching depth continued today with the signing of Livan Hernandez, El Duque’s half-brother. Hernandez, 34 next Friday, will compete with Jon Niese, Freddy Garcia and Tim Redding for the fifth starter role. He was signed to a minor league deal, but could earn $1 million if he makes the big league roster.
Bet on it.
“I just feel we need to have numbers,” said GM Omar Minaya. The Mets have 29 pitchers in camp.
Hernandez is an innings eater. He threw 180 last season for Minnesota and Colorado, but logged at least 200 the previous eight years. He has won at least 11 games the past nine seasons.
I like the signing. Minaya is right; a team can’t have too much pitching, and Hernandez has a history of durability.
This signing also leaves Pedro Martinez out in the cold.