As the Mets get closer to Opening Day they are going to have to make tough decisions for their roster. The biggest questions for the team are with the bullpen. Right there are five pitchers who look to be locks for Opening Day barring injuries:
Before Spring Training you could have added Pedro Beato and Tim Byrdak to that list of names, but injuries have delayed the start of their seasons. Beato is likely going to start the season the DL because of his strained rotator cuff. Byrdak had knee surgery to repair his meniscus, but Adam Rubin said that he might only miss the first series of the season. Somehow I find that hard to believe and I’m just assuming Byrdak will miss a few weeks of the season. So with the both of them out, it would open two spots on the Opening Day roster.
Personally I believe who ever performs better in Spring Training should be award these spots. It looks like these two spots are going to come down to five pitchers. So let’s take a look at their numbers this Spring:
1) 6.1 IP, 1.42 ERA, 3 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, and 2 K
2) 6.2 IP, 0.00 ERA, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, and 8 K
3) 6.1 IP, 1.42 ERA, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, and 1 K
4) 5.2 IP, 1.59 ERA, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, and 3 K
5) 7.2 IP, 7.04 ERA, 12 H, 8 R, 6 ER, 3 BB, and 3 K
Just looking at the numbers, player number two is easily a lock for the team. He’s given up no runs and an impressive number of strike outs.
For the second spot it gets a little tougher between numbers one, three, and four. Their numbers are all about the same, so it would come down to who has the most options and what they could bring to the team.
Now let’s match those numbers to names:
So Edgin was pitcher number two. The problem with him is that the highest level he’s pitched at has been with the St. Lucie Mets. He’s also not on the 40-man roster, which the Mets are having a hard time with regardless of Edgin. In fact, there is only one pitcher out of these five that are on the 40-man roster, and that is Schwinden.
Adam Rubin wrote that Batista is likely to make the Opening Day roster which I really don’t understand. He hasn’t been very affective this Spring, so he hasn’t earned the spot. If they are looking for a long
relief man who can spot start, Schwinden can do that. I understand that Batista is a veteran, but that’s not a good enough reason to make the team over someone who is pitching better. If Batista had been pitching well, I’d have no problem with him making the team. But his 7.04 ERA is hard to choose over guys who have sub 1.50 ERAs.
For me, I’d go with Schwinden and Edgin for Opening Day. I know Edgin doesn’t have a ton of experience, but he’s 25, so he’s not exactly young for a Single-A player.
If the Mets are seriously just going to give Batista the spot in the bullpen it sends a bad message to the players. They tell them that they will competing for a spot on the major league team, but then they just give the spot to the person wit the most major league experience? Then what’s the point of having Edgin still in camp if they aren’t going to give him a shot at making the team because he’s only pitched at Single-A? If you pitch well in Spring Training, a setting where you’re out there to make the team by impressing people and you perform well and don’t make the team, what’s the point of being invited to Spring Training?