Who Will Be The Odd Man Out When Wheeler Arrives: Gee Or Marcum?

MLB: Milwaukee Brewers at Miami Marlins

Updated by Joe D. on 1/31

Here is a breakdown of Shaun Marcum’s deal including the $4 million in incentives which are all tied to him staying healthy. (Courtesy of Adam Rubin, ESPN New York)

Shaun Marcum is guaranteed $4 million as part of his major league deal with the Mets. He also can earn as much as $4 million in incentives.

Here’s how that potential bonus money breaks down, via the Associated Press:

• $250,000 apiece for reaching 120, 140, 160 and 170 innings.

• $375,000 apiece for reaching 180 and 190 innings.

• $500,0000 for reaching 200 innings.

• $375,000 apiece for 90 and 120 days on active roster, or on disabled list for injury unrelated to his right arm.

• $500,000 apiece for being on active roster or DL for injury unrelated to right arm for 150 and 170 days. (The major league season is 183 days.)

Here’s what I’m wondering…

Lets say Wheeler comes up in May for argument’s sake…

I’m thinking that the Mets won’t be able to just yank Marcum out of the rotation. It would seem that his job as a starter is pretty much guaranteed unless he gets hurt based on these incentives; otherwise these incentives mean nothing.

That tell’s me that no matter how good Dillon Gee is pitching, he’ll likely be the odd man out whenever Zack Wheeler is promoted.

Updated 1/30 4:00 PM

Shaun Marcum spoke to beat writers at Citi Field on Friday and revealed that Mets special assistant J.P. Ricciardi was a driving force behind his decision to sign with the Mets.

“I know he pushed a little bit. I can’t say how much. But I know he had some say in getting me there,” Marcum said. “And the other thing, for me, was an opportunity to go out and pitch — make 30-plus starts — and an opportunity to go out and throw over 200 innings. I think that’s every starter’s goal. They’re giving me the opportunity to do that.”

It was Ricciardi who drafted Marcum when he was the general manager of the Jays in 2003,

Marcum also said that replacing R.A. is not just his responsibility but that it has to be a team effort.

“As far as filling R.A. Dickey’s shoes, I think that will be tough to fill, having one person do it. I think if all five starters go out there and do their jobs, stay healthy, get to the goal of 200-plus innings, then I think that will fill R.A.’s shoes in itself — having those five guys make 30-plus starts.”

Of course it’s not just the starts and the innings, but essentially the quality of the pitching that will be most paramount in duplicating what Dickey meant to the team last season. It’s easier said than done.

Original Post 1/30 2:00 PM

The New York Mets today announced that they have signed righthanded pitcher Shaun Marcum to a one-year contract.

The deal is worth a guaranteed $4 million dollars with an additional $4 million dollars in incentives according to Ken Rosenthal.

Marcum, 31, ranks 16th in winning percentage (.613) among active pitchers with at least 100 career starts. The 6-0, 195-pounder also has 52 quality starts over the last three seasons and the majors’ best road ERA (2.67) over the last two years.

He made 21 starts last year with the Milwaukee Brewers, going 7-4 with a 3.70 ERA (51 earned runs/124.0 innings).

Marcum was placed on the 15-Day Disabled List on June 23 last season with right elbow tightness and returned to the Brewers rotation on August 24.

In 2011, Marcum was 13-7 with a 3.54 ERA (79 earned runs/200.2 innings) and 158 strikeouts in 33 starts with the Brewers. He led the majors with a 2.21 road ERA (24 earned runs/92.2 innings) that season.

Marcum missed the 2009 campaign after undergoing “Tommy John” surgery, but rebounded to win 13 games and notch a career-high 165 strikeouts in 31 starts for the Toronto Blue Jays the following year.

Marcum is 57-36 with a 3.76 ERA (383 earned runs/916.2 innings) with 746 strikeouts and 282 walks in 174 major league games, 149 starts with the Blue Jays and Brewers. Over the last two years, the Kansas City native is 20-11 with a 3.60 ERA (130 earned runs/324.2 innings) with 267 strikeouts and 98 walks.

Marcum was selected in the third round in 2003 by the Blue Jays out of Southwest Missouri State University. He made his major league debut with Toronto in 2005.

The rotation appears to be set now and will likely look like this:

  1. Johan Santana
  2. Shaun Marcum
  3. Jon Niese
  4. Dillon Gee
  5. Matt Harvey

That should be the norm at least until prospect Zack Wheeler arrives.

About Joe D 8026 Articles
I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73, '00 and '15, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.