The New York Mets today announced the club has signed righthanded pitcher Miguel Batista and righthanded pitcher Fernando Cabrera to minor league contracts and invited both to major league Spring Training.
Batista, 40, split last season between St. Louis and the Mets, finishing 5-2 with a 3.60 ERA (24 earned runs/60.0 innings) in 35 games, five starts between the two clubs. The 6-1, 210-pounder started the year with the Cardinals and went 3-2 with a 4.60 ERA (15 earned runs/29.1 innings) in 26 games, one start, before the team released him on June 22. He signed with the Mets on July 5 and made 10 appearances with Buffalo (AAA) of the International League, compiling a 3-0 record and a 4.24 ERA (22 earned runs/46.2 innings) for the Bisons. The Mets selected his contract on August 26 and Batista went 2-0 with a 2.64 ERA (nine earned runs/30.2 innings) in nine games, four starts for the team. He became the oldest pitcher in franchise history to toss a complete-game shutout when he blanked Cincinnati, 3-0, on September 28 of last year in the final game of the season.
Originally signed as a non-drafted free agent by Montreal in 1988, Batista ranks 15th among active players in games pitched (623) and 22nd in innings pitched (1903.2). He is 101-112 with 41 saves and a 4.48 ERA (947 earned runs/1903.2 innings) in 623 career games, 243 starts.
Cabrera, 30, spent last season with Sacramento (AAA) of the Pacific Coast League, finishing 4-3 with a 2.71 ERA (19 earned runs/63.0 innings) in 53 games. The 6-4, 225-pound righthander has major league time with Boston (2009-2010), Baltimore (2007-2008) and Cleveland (2004-2007), compiling an 8-7 record, one save and a 5.24 ERA (102 earned runs/175.1 innings) in 132 games out of the bullpen.
The club also announced the signing of shortstop Sean Kazmar, who will report to minor league camp. Kazmar, 27, hit .253 (117-462) with three home runs and 45 RBI in 127 games for Tacoma (AAA) of the Pacific Coast League last season. Kazmar appeared in the major leagues in 2008 with San Diego, hitting .205 (8-39) in 19 games.
Batista did a nice job for the Mets at the end of last season and we can certainly use some starting pitching depth in Buffalo. Otherwise nothing earth shattering here.