With the trade of R.A. Dickey just a day or two from becoming official, the Mets now have a significant vacancy in their rotation.
Unless something changes, and it probably wont, Johan Santana and Jon Niese are the Mets best options for the number one spot in the rotation. But both have some concerns.
The pressure will be on for both Matt Harvey and Dillon Gee to carry a bigger share of the load in 2013. Harvey had a great 10-start debut, but with the book now out on him the real test will come this season. Gee returns from surgery to repair an artery in his throwing arm. The team expects him to be ready for spring.
Last week, Adam Rubin of ESPN New York spoke to a team source who told him that there is “virtually no way” Zack Wheeler will make the team out of camp”. The big motivating factor for this comes down to controlling Wheeler’s free agent clock and making sure he stays under team control through the 2019 season. If Wheeler were to be promoted before May, he would be eligible for free agency one year sooner in 2018. That wont happen.
Anthony DiComo and Rubin, both believe that the Mets will likely turn to 23-year-old Jenrry Mejia to replace Dickey in the rotation, unless they acquire another starting pitcher on the free-agent market. It’s probably about time that the Mets figure out what they have in Mejia so now is as good a time as any. Give him 6-7 starts and then revisit the situation and make a determination.
Don’t count out the possibility that Mike Pelfrey could return. The former Mets first-rounder is adamant that he won’t re-sign with the Mets as a reliever, but the situation has now changed and we might be a better looking option for him now.
Today, I floated the idea of possibly reaching out to the Dodgers to check in on Chris Capuano who may be squeezed out of a rotation spot with the addition of Zack Greinke. Capuano had a solid season and has a reasonable contract.
What was once a strength for the Mets has quickly evolved into just another area of the team with many unanswered questions. But hopefully they will come to a good resolution before the team breaks camp this spring.