Even after the signing of Bartolo Colon, there are still rumblings that the Mets might add another veteran starting pitcher to the mix. My question, is why?
At present, the Mets have four givens in their rotation – Colon, Jonathon Niese, Zack Wheeler, and Dillon Gee. Beyond those four, the team has Jenrry Mejia, Rafael Montero, and Jacob deGrom. A bit further down the line because of the fact that he hasn’t pitched above Double-A (and the Super Two issue), is Noah Syndergaard.
There’s no reason to believe that Jenrry Mejia won’t be ready to take the ball when the bell tolls. Even if the Mets are wary of Mejia because of his injury history (even though last season’s elbow clean out was both expected and minor), they would still be able to turn to either Rafael Montero or Jacob deGrom in the event Mejia (or any of the other starters) went down.
Despite some reports to the contrary, Montero was quite successful after some initial bumps and bruises last season after he was promoted to Triple-A Las Vegas. The Mets would probably like to give him some more seasoning in the minors, but Montero should be able to step up to the bigs as soon as opening day if it’s necessary. In a pinch, Jacob deGrom could also fill in.
Further down the line, the presence of Noah Syndergaard reduces the need for another starting pitcher even further.
While discussing potential trades of Ike Davis and Daniel Murphy, the Mets have reportedly been asking for young starting pitching in return. If the Mets do indeed trade one or both of them, it’s possible that they’ll then look to deal an established starting pitcher in an effort to land an upgrade at shortstop.
Still, if the return for Davis and/or Murphy is major league ready starting pitcher, and the Mets then turn around and trade a major league ready starting pitcher, they’d still be left with the same amount of depth.
According to Keith Law, Jenrry Mejia has top of the rotation stuff. He should be given the chance to continue what he started last season – in the major league rotation. In the event that he falters or gets injured, the Mets have cushions below him who would be able to step in.
In short, the club should be focused on shoring up the bullpen and finding an upgrade at shortstop – not adding another arm to what’s already an organizational strength.