Collins Says Valverde Will Remain Closer

jose valverde

Jose Valverde blew his first save of the season last night after surrendering a back-breaking, game-tying, three-run homer in the ninth to Raul Ibanez.

After getting two quick outs, Valverde gave up a single to David Freese and then walked Erick Aybar before being taken out of the yard by the 41-year old Ibanez on a 93 mph fastball.

Valverde averted a similar disaster in Atlanta, where he nearly gave up a a game-tying grand slam that just went foul during the Mets 4-0 win at Turner Field. However, he came away unscathed.

After last night’s game, manager Terry Collins told reporters that Valverde will remain his closer.

“He’s thrown the ball very well. Tonight’s really the worst outing he’s had. The at-bat by Aybar was the one that dismantled him. You’re going to get some hits on him. I was told when he walks people he gets in trouble. He hasn’t been walking guys, and so therefore he’s pitching good.” 

The veteran closer later said what happened was already behind him.

“You have to do it, take it out and throw it away and figure out for the next day. That’s what I’m doing. A lot of guys are different. For me, a blown save today, I pick it up, throw it in the garbage and play for tomorrow.”

Valverde saw his ERA rise to 4.26 for the season.

As for Collins feeling the need to assert that Valverde’s still the closer, it’s not like the Mets are flush with many other options anyway – of course he’s still the closer. Valverde has pitched surprisingly well for the most part and it’s good to see he won’t be dwelling on what transpired…

Let’s shake it off as well and focus on taking this series this afternoon…

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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.