Jenrry Mejia and his future in the Mets’ rotation

While it wasn’t a jaw-dropping performance, Jenrry Mejia had himself quite a second start when he dropped a 3-2 decision on Wednesday night to the Miami Marlins.

Although he didn’t receive the win, Mejia battled in an out of trouble (after giving up three runs in the second and third innings) and looked poised while on the mound. Mejia now has two quality starts under his belt after coming off the DL with elbow inflammation last week. After two starts, Mejia is now 1-1 with a 2.07 ERA and 1.07 WHIP. Mejia has also 11 strikeouts to just one walk in 13 innings pitched.

So, with Mejia pitching this well, it begs the question: Where does he stand in the rotation going forward?

After being yo-yoed between the rotation and the bullpen for most of his professional career, Mejia has the looks of a pitcher who feels comfortable being part of a staff.

Although he’s had a history of various injuries, Mejia appears to be blossoming into the pitcher we all thought he could become. His recent success is just a bonus to a Mets’ franchise that is pitching heavy.

No one should argue that Mejia should remain in the rotation for the rest of the season—even when Jonathon Niese comes back. Mejia has to stick in the rotation so we can finally see what this kid (and at 23, he still can, in essence, be called a kid) is made of.

With Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler about to be preserved due to innings limits, Mejia’s impact couldn’t have come at a better time. With the Mets not likely to be in contention in the fall, Mejia will be given a good, long hard look. If Mejia is to be a future starter with the Mets, he has to be adequately stretched out and these last two months should give us a good indicator of the pitcher Mejia can be. This should be the audition that really distinguishes what Mejia will become.

If anything, Mejia could be a nice trading chip to work with in the offseason. If not traded in the offseason, we could be looking at the Mets’ fourth or fifth starter for the foreseeable future—and that may not be such a bad thing.

5 comments for “Jenrry Mejia and his future in the Mets’ rotation

  1. AV
    August 1, 2013 at 8:56 am

    Baseball is a more mental game than any other. While Mejia has the “stuff” to succeed out of the bullpen, he’s shown that he’s not comfortable coming out of the pen. (It’s similar to how Lucas Duda tends to hit better when he’s playing 1B instead of OF.) We all agree Mejia has the talent to succeed. If the Mets have a spot in the rotation where he is mentally comfortable, I can’t see anything wrong with him being in the rotation.

  2. Metsense
    August 1, 2013 at 9:09 am

    In the NL of the 70 starting pitchers who threw at least 60 innings, only one Met is in the top 45 in ERA. That leaves the Mets with Heffner #46, Gee #48 and Niese #51. All three seem to be middle of the rotation pitchers. Wheeler and Mejia are both pitching better than those three. Mejia needs to stay ahead of those three to maintain his position in the 2014 and also fight off the challenge of Montero, Syndergaard and deGrom. Mejia looks good and I think he is up for the challenge. His impending off season surgery may reduce his trade value so I actually seem him as a 2014 Met starter.

    • Za
      August 1, 2013 at 4:08 pm

      At this point, Mejía is one of the 5 or 6 best starting pitchers in the organization. We’ll just have him pitch every 5th or 6th day and see what he can do this year. If he sticks the whole rest of the season on the roster, we’ll also have an option for him next year, giving us a bit of flexibility in addition to giving him a bit more trade value.

      I would love to see him stick in the rotation since he, on days, can pitch like a #1 and overall seems like a solid #3. He also gives a totally different look to any of the other pitchers we have on the team. I would love it if he could make 30+ starts for the Mets in 2014. He is still only 23, throws a 95 MPH cutter, and flashes plus change, plus slider, and plus curveball, though obviously he needs to work on the consistency.

      He’s also, at this point, a much better pitcher than both DeGrom and Montero, and has far more movement on his pitchers than Montero, who will wind up as traid bait or in the bullpen.

  3. Name
    August 1, 2013 at 11:05 am

    Meija may have finally taken a step forward. My knock on him was that he always had trouble finding the strike zone. So far in 2 starts, he has seemed to have a handle on the strike zone with a very healthy 2-1 strike to ball ratio and a sub-1 walk rate(which will tick up at some point). This has allowed him to post an average of 14.84 pitches per inning, which would be one of the top marks in baseball, which means he can go deep in games.

  4. Chris F
    August 1, 2013 at 11:29 am

    Right now I see him as pitching depth. The present sample size is far too small to know what we have. Clearly the bone spurs are an issue, so we may not even know until next spring training once he get it all cleaned up in there. Having said that, its hard not to like what weve seen thus far.

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