Before Team Venezuela pounded out 20 hits in a tune-up against the Mets prior to the World Baseball Classic, former Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez spoke to reporters at Tradition Field, and he had plenty to say about the Mets. In fact, the right-handed reliever would welcome a return to Flushing in order to “redeem” himself, as he mentioned he didn’t have his best years with the Amazins. However, he’s still in search of a contract for the 2013 season, and is rumored to be looking for something in the neighborhood of $7 million.
With the additions Sandy Alderson has made with minor league deals (Scott Atchison, Greg Burke, LaTroy Hawkins, to name a few), as well as the guaranteed contract of Brandon Lyon, the Mets most certainly don’t need to entertain the thought of signing K-Rod, even with the likelihood Frank Francisco starts the season the disabled list. And let me tell you what…thank God! The last thing this team needs is for a veteran like Rodriguez to bring his baggage into the clubhouse. I applaud him for acknowledging his years at Citi Field weren’t that great, but sometimes, you need to just cut your losses and move on. However, it’s obvious K-Rod would be open to just about anything right now, as long as he got himself a roster spot somewhere.
There was quite a bit of news coming out of Mets camp yesterday, as Danny Abriano has it all summarized for you right here. One of the highlights included both Johan Santana and Zack Wheeler throwing off flat ground, side-by-side yesterday. It was Wheeler’s second straight day of throwing off flat ground, and he’s expected to get back on the mound within the coming days. Santana is expected to make his first Grapefruit League start next week on the 14th, which will give him three starts in Florida before April 1st rolls around. Daniel Murphy is “progressing swimmingly” from his intercostal strain, and is swinging in the cage. Once he’s able to take full batting practice, he’ll be able to start appearing in games.
Although Team Venezuela darted out to a big lead, the Mets made it close in the late innings, dropping the exhibition affair, 14-10. Marlon Byrd got the start in center and made the most of it with a three-run bomb, while Collin Cowgill continues to impress with three more hits. Carlos Torres continues to struggle on the mound, watching his ERA balloon up to 37.80. Catch the Rising Apple recap right here.
Once hearing that Byrd would be getting the start in center field, Danny Abriano shared his opinion on whether or not that should be a regular occurrence if he makes the team. In case you’re wondering, the answer is no, and you can see why here. All this talk about Santana and his arm spurred Will DeBoer to create his latest Rising Apple Top Ten list for other names to use for the term “dead arm.” The Rising Apple Report aired it’s 10th episode last night, as Danny, Dan Haefeli, and Sam Maxwell talked about the latest happenings in PSL. Meanwhile, Sam told us why it’s a good thing David Wright is gone playing for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic.