Is Brandon Webb worth a flier?

With the Mets unlikely to sign closer Brian Wilson to a major league contract, the Mets are setting their sights on another reclamation project to boost the pitching staff. This time the Mets are kicking the tires about acquiring the services of Brandon Webb.

Is making overtures at Webb worth the gamble? Is he simply too much damaged goods?

Webb, 33, has not pitched since 2009- when he made only one start. Webb has not been able to overcome the shoulder problems that plagued him in his later years in Arizona. Webb has had several surgeries to his shoulder and this month he will have a bullpen session in front of potential suitors to show off how he looks. This is your classic low-risk/high-reward gamble.

In seven seasons with the Diamondbacks, Webb compiled an 87-62 record to go along with a 3.27 ERA and 1.24 WHIP. In 1319.2 innings pitched, Webb has 1,065 strikeouts.

So it begs the question. Granted he looks good, should the Mets contemplate offering Webb a contract? As it is, almost the entire NL East is interested in Webb.

At his best, Webb was a dominant sinker-ball pitcher unrivaled by no one in the league. In 2006, he won the N.L. Cy Young with the Diamondbacks while being the runner up in both 2007 and 2008. In the mid 2000’s, Webb was as dominant, a top-of-the line ace as there was.

While no one expects Webb to get back to his ace-like ways, Webb could be a scrap-heap option that could work out well for the Mets. After all, this is the same organization that got great mileage out of Chris Young and Chris Capuano in the last couple of years.

While the Mets would be better served by going after the likes of a Carl Pavano to fill the innings void left the departure of R.A. Dickey, Webb is the boom or bust pitcher who could pay off big dividends. The reward with him far outweighs the risk.

For a team with a young pitching corps, Webb would be a welcome addition. For Webb to regain some of his glory and mentor a young rotation along the way, he could benefit the squad in more ways than one.

At this point, why not?

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8 comments for “Is Brandon Webb worth a flier?

  1. January 17, 2013 at 8:52 am

    He has pitched 1 game in how many years? 5 years? Why not go further back? Let’s see if you can find someone who hasn’t pitched in maybe 5 years but had a decent record before he injured his pitching arm. Oh! That’s it! Brandon Webb! Can we at least try to go forward and not backwards? Even if he did pitch to a 4 ERA why not give that spot to one of the kids? The guy is finished. Let him stay retired. Let’s look up all the rejects we can muster and put a Met uniform on them. While you’re at it, why not see of Roger Clemens is available. He fits the criteria. If you’re looking for a mentor I don’t understand why you don’t see Johan as that leader.

    • January 17, 2013 at 10:32 am

      I’m not opposed to taking a flier on a vet in a low risk/high reward move… but I don’t know if I could make Webb one of the starting five.

      Don’t get me wrong, I thought he was great in 06-08 and was disappointed to see the injury bug bite, but we haven’t seen the dominant Webb in years. This is a guy you sign on as gravy, a bonus player, maybe a long man in the bullpen until he proves both health and velocity.

      I’d rather they pick up Saunders, Young or someone else who we know can actually throw a baseball to hold Wheeler’s spot.

    • February 9, 2013 at 11:53 pm

      I guess he’s not worth taking a chance on now since he officially retired. Thank God!

  2. January 17, 2013 at 9:48 am

    I think Pete covered the Brandon Webb angle, so I’m going to focus on Carl Pavano. I don’t care that he didn’t have success with the Yankees – I don’t want him because he basically hasn’t had success anywhere the past five years. Since 2005, he’s had *one* season with an ERA below 4.30

  3. Name
    January 17, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    My thinking is that if there’s room at AAA, there’s absolutely no risk in signing a guy to a minor league contract.
    However, i think there are some better options this year for minor league contracts, so i don’t think it makes much sense to go after Webb when players like Pavano, Lowe, Dice-K, maybe Chris Young all can be had for minor league deals as well, and are a better bet to contriubte this season

    • Metsense
      January 18, 2013 at 7:38 am

      I was surprised the Mets had zero interest in Karstens at 2.5 M A cheap and temporary innings eater is Kevin Millwood. In the end though, I would prefer one of the young arms to step up because it is a rebuilding year.

  4. jerrygrote
    January 17, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    The guy that is “worth a flier” is a catcher that has 592 ABs in the major leagues, with 24 HR, 82 RBI and 91 walks in 694 plate appearances. A lifetime OPS of 750 against RHP? Billy Beane must have gotten smacked around.

    Bring me the head of George Kottarus!

    • Name
      January 17, 2013 at 3:36 pm

      Yea. I was thinking the same thing when i saw the Morse deal and the corresponding A’s move on Kottaras. He would give us more depth, and is probably better than Recker, and probably won’t cost us more than a fringe prospect.

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