I guess Duaner Sanchez won’t have to worry about being on time for team meetings and early morning practices anymore, after being diagnosed with a hairline fracture on his pitching shoulder today.
Sanchez had been shutdown after complaining of a pop sound in his shoulder and tingling in his arm. He was sent for an MRI yesterday and they confirmed the results today. According to Omar Minaya, he will be out at least until August and possibly for the season. OK, now that’s enough about that.
The Mets bullpen which was the best in the league last season, has surely taken some hits, and will be hard pressed to repeat last year’s success. However, that said, I really don’t think we should abandon ship in the bullpen. So grab a life jacket, and stick around while I give it to you the straight up dope on our 2007 bullpen.
Yesterday we learned that Chan Ho Park begrudgingly accepted his new role in the bullpen as did Aaron Sele. The big surprise was that the young side-armer Joe Smith, was also told he made the team. I’m not big fans of either Sele or Park, but based on how poorly the other candidates did this spring, you can’t fault the Mets for adding them to the pen. At the very least, Park provides a little insurance for the rotation should anyone get off to a poor start or go down to an injury. Joe Smith will make everyone forget Chad Bradford, and has been one of the most impressive rookies in camp.
Billy Wagner has had mixed results so far this spring as he adds a new pitch to his arsenal, while Aaron Heilman has been hit or miss this spring as well. I believe both of them will be solid again this season and wouldn’t worry too much about their spring numbers.
Scott Schoeneweis is just what the doctor ordered! He is a crafty veteran who is absolutely deadly against left-handed hitters. He has had a great spring and comes with an excellent track record. Not a bad weapon to have in a league chock full of lethal left-handed power hitters.
Between you and me, I think Pedro Feliciano is the real deal and the closer of the future for this team. He has great stuff, outstanding control, and a plus fastball. I love his makeup and his composure out there on the mound. He definitely has some ‘tude out there and the weapons to get the job done.
Listen guys, I dont know if the Mets bullpen will match up with last years version, but with a solid foundation that includes Smith, Schoeneweis, Feliciano, Heilman and Wagner, we should easily out produce any of the other bullpens in the National League.
So am I disappointed about the injury to Sanchez? Of course I am. Am I worried about the Mets bullpen this season? No, not really.
Oh, by the way… Mets just beat the Dodgers 6-5. Glavine looked great, Mets broke a 5-5 tie in the 8th, and Joe Smith picked up the save. I’m outta here.