The Mets blew 29 save opportunities so far this season, and with them, perhaps a chance at the playoffs. Adding a top notch closer such as Francisco Rodriguez would improve the bullpen, but not put it over the top.
Billy Wagner blew seven save opportunities, but even worse was the bridge leading up to him. It was more than just a bad season.
Here’s how I see the pen:
-Billy Wagner: Won’t pitch for the Mets again. No brainer. However, he will get paid $11 million by them, and that will inhibit what they do this winter. I don’t see them paying both Wagner and Rodriguez.
-Aaron Heilman: They’ve resisted trading him the past two winters. They should pull the trigger if they get an offer this time. Heilman wants to start and since the Mets won’t give him that opportunity, they should try to get what they can. If they wanted to give Heilman a chance at being the fifth starter, I’d entertain it because it is clear this bullpen thing isn’t working out.
-Scott Schoeneweis: I can’t believe they gave him three years. (I mistakenly said he was done after this year. He’s signed through 2009).
-Joe Smith: Has his moments, both good and bad. Will be brought back.
-Pedro Feliciano: I’ve always been cool on him for some reason, even when he’s pitched well. I think they’ll bring him back.
-Luis Ayala: He saved a few games. Big deal. I don’t see him as the answer at closer. I do see him coming back.
-Carlos Muniz: Wouldn’t miss him.
-Ricardo Rincon: Ditto.
-Duaner Sanchez: He doesn’t have his fastball anymore. Certainly not a set-up man or closer type anymore. Not a loss if they don’t bring him back.
-Brian Stokes: More good appearances than bad. I’d like to see him back.
-Nelson Figueroa: Feel good story early this season. Very hittable.
-Brandon Knight: Pitched decently. Long man?
-Bobby Parnell: Can bring the heat. Let’s see what he can do in spring training.