So by now, everyone has heard the news that Mike Pelfrey will not be tendered this off-season. This allows him to freely seek employment with other teams. The day this was announced (Tuesday I believe), I happened to be listening to the Boomer and Carton Radio Show while I was driving in my car. Boomer said something that immediately resonated with me, and probably many other Mets fans that were listening at that time. He said (and I’m loosely quoting) “couldn’t you see Pelfrey signing with the Braves and winning 17 games.” It’s funny he said that, because as Mets fans, I feel like we are always afraid of being burned like that, and that was almost the first thought that popped into my mind.
Regardless of where he signs, the Mets did make the right decision with Pelfrey. Even with the advances in modern medicine these days, Tommy John surgery is still very serious. Nowadays, it seems like pitchers bounce right back from Tommy John, and may even come back stronger than before the surgery. The Mets just aren’t in a position to take a financial risk at this point. And regardless of the medical advances, it’s still considered a risk to sign someone fresh off of Tommy John surgery.
Pelfrey looked great at the beginning of 2012, so if the Mets are able to resign him at a discount, I would be all for it. There has been a lot of discussion about how promising our starting rotation looks at this point, and if there is even room for Pelfrey at this point. Let’s not forget, there are also still question marks as well. Can Santana make it through the season healthy? Will Gee come back and continue to build off of his 2012 season? Will Niese continue to progress? Will Harvey continue his meteoric rise to super stardom, or will he come back down to earth? Can a knuckleballer sustain the level of success Dickey experienced in 2012 across multiple campaigns?
Those are all very real questions facing the Mets this off-season. Right now, we are going to cross our fingers and hope that the answers to all those questions is yes. However, the reality of the matter is you can never have too much pitching. Having a lot of solid pitching in baseball is like having oil in the global economy – not everybody has it, but it is a necessity that everyone wants, and is willing to pay for it. Good pitching can fill the offensive holes in teams by holding the opposing teams to a minimal amount of runs, and leaving their team with less work to do. And the Mets sure do have a bunch of offensive holes, which means they either fill those holes with offensive players, or stockpile solid pitching.
The Mets should attempt to bring back Pelfrey in 2013, and I think they will. There are still a lot of question marks surrounding this pitching staff, so adding some insurance isn’t such a bad idea – albeit, a guy coming off Tommy John isn’t exactly insurance, but he could provide some bullpen help and also help out the starting rotation if one of the starting five have to visit the bullpen. That being said, I still wouldn’t be surprised to see Pelfrey sign with a different team, and end up winning 17 games.
By the way, is anyone else concerned that the most exciting news this off-season for Mets fans has been that the Mets have decided to bring back a blue and orange alternate jersey?