2011 Season in Review: Miguel Batista

The New York Mets went 77-85 in 2011. As suggested by the sub-par record, there were a fair share of ups and downs throughout the season. “2011 Season in Review,” which will be an on-going series, will analyze every single Mets player that picked up a ball or glove in 2011, for better or worse. This particular “2011 Season in Review” will take a look at pitcher Miguel Batista.

When Miguel Batista takes the hill for your team in the second half of the season, you know something went dreadfully wrong. Even though the ten-team veteran was signed to a Minor League deal for pure depth purposes, the Mets depleted bullpen needed relief–and thus Miguel Batista.

Unlike his un-terrific season debut with the St. Louis Cardinals (4.60 ERA, 1.56 WHIP, 0.84 K/BB in 29.3 innings), the 40 year-old hurler actually pitched well-ish for the Mets. Batista posted a 2.64 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, and 1.07 K/BB in 30.6 innings for the Mets in 2011. The majority of those innings actually came in four starts, where he posted a 2.42 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, and 1.00 K/BB (he also owned a 3.86 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, and 1.50 K/BB in 4.6 relief innings).

Yet despite how well Batista appeared to do on the surface, his peripherals raise all kinds of red flags. The righty rolled balls at an extremely lucky .247 BABIP (career .293 BABIP), and subsequently, his 5.20 xFIP was vastly different from his seasonal 3.60 ERA. And while Batista’s fastball was worth 6.8 RAA (second positive showing in-a-row), his slider (-5.4 RAA) and change-up (-1.6 RAA) made him his repertoire look awfully one-dimensional. In addition, Batista’s newfound homerun stinginess (3.3% HR/FB) was obviously a result of the lofty dimensions of Citi Field (career 9.2% HR/FB).

It’s hard to “hate on” Miguel Batista considering his un-Miguel Batista-like performance for the Mets, but given the reality of his situation, it would be shocking and a mistake for him to be anywhere close to the 25-man roster in 2012.

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