By Dave Mills
If Alderson & Company ink Brandon Lyon, there is plenty to choose from in terms of fielding a quality bullpen far more worthy than the 2012 cast of characters.
There could be a very interesting “closer-by-committee” scenario available from this pool: Lyon, Frank Francisco, Bobby Parnell and Josh Edgin. Assuming Jeremy Hefner is the long man and spot starter, two spots remain for a right arm from this group: Scott Atchison, LeTroy Hawkins, Carlos Torres and Greg Burke; and a left arm from this group: Pedro Feliciano, Aaron Laffey, Tim Byrdak and Jack Leathersich. Robert Carson, Elvin Ramirez and Jeurys Familia (and a few who are cast-off from those mentioned above) are likely to start the season at Las Vegas. But overall, this is a deep and reasonably compelling assortment of arms.
Is there a rule that demands one arm must be designated to “close” games?
Gil Hodges had five pitchers who regularly finished games on the ’69 World Champs—Ron Taylor, Tug McGraw, Cal Koonce, Jack DiLauro and Nolan Ryan. And the Mets won 100 games with this formula. It’s interesting to note that Mets starters finished 51 games with Seaver and Koosman finishing 50% of the games they started (34 of 68). Hodges was a pragmatist who believed that winning was more important than egos. Had he managed for 20 years, there is little doubt he would have become one of the greatest managers the game has ever seen.
The formula for the 1986 World Champs also saw a bit of closer-by-committee with Roger McDowell and Jesse Orosco finishing most close victories, but Doug Sisk, Randy Nieman, Rick Anderson and Randy Myers were in the mix a bit as well. Mets starters finished 27 games. In 2012, the Mets only had eight complete games and five of them were from R.A. Dickey.
Speaking of arms…
It seems the Giants have inked Ramon Ramirez back into the fold. This means they gave up Andres Torres and Ramirez for one season in exchange for Angel Pagan. And they now have them all in San Francisco (with Pagan in CF for the next four years). Unfortunately, the Mets have nothing to show for the deal except the two sub-par performances in 2012 by Torres and Ramirez. Last year at this time, weren’t most of us very pleased (and excited) with the deal?
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