Mets Add Matz, Goeddel, Walters, and deGrom to 40-Man Roster

By Danny Abriano

According to the Mets, the club has added left handed pitcher Steven Matz, and right handed pitchers Erik Goeddel, Jeff Walters, and Jacob deGrom to the 40-man roster.

The additions were made in order to protect Matz, Goeddel, Walters, and deGrom from the Rule 5 draft, and brought the 40-man roster to capacity.

Sep 28, 2013; New York, NY, USA; A general view of the field before the start of the New York Mets and Milwaukee Brewers game at Citi Field. Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Matz, a 22 year old who had a breakthrough season for Low-A Savannah after his career was held up by injuries, was a smart add by the Mets.

If you look at his upside alone – he’s a lefty starter who has touched 97 with his fastball and has a chance to have plus secondaries – it’s a no-brainer that the Mets protected him.

Goedell, a right handed starter who turns 25 next month, had a decent 2013 campaign for Double-A Binghamton.  In 134 innings pitched (over 25 starts), Goeddel had a 4.37 ERA and 1.44 WHIP.

Some feel that Goedell may be destined for the bullpen, where his stuff would play up.

He’ll likely open 2014 with Triple-A Las Vegas.

Walters, a 26 year old right hander, had a very good season as the closer for Double-A Binghamton last year.  In 56 innings pitched spanning 53 appearances, Walters gave up 46 hits, walked 16 batters, and struck out 60.  He had a 2.09 ERA and 1.11 WHIP.

It’s likely that Walters will open the 2014 season with Triple-A Las Vegas, but he has an outside shot at being in the big league pen when camp breaks.

DeGrom, 25, is a right handed starting pitcher who (along with Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero) is viewed as part of the triumvirate of pitching prospects who are the closest to the majors.

Though he doesn’t have the upside of Syndergaard or Montero (meaning a shift to the bullpen is possible), deGrom is someone who’s extremely valuable to the club.  He had an ERA of 4.52 for Triple-A Las Vegas last season after being promoted from Double-A Binghamton mid-year.  His FIP, however, was almost a full run lower, coming in at 3.56.

DeGrom will likely be one of the competitors for the fifth spot in the rotation during spring training.  If he doesn’t make the big league club, he’ll open the year in the Las Vegas rotation.

Now that the 40-man roster is full, the Mets will have to remove at least one player if they want to participate in the Rule 5 draft in a few weeks.  They’ll also have to remove other members of the 40-man as they make external acquisitions.

At present, there are three players who could soon lose their 40-man spot.

The most obvious roster casualty is Jordany Valdespin.  Frankly, it’s surprising that he’s stayed on the roster this long.

Shortstop Omar Quintanilla is arbitration eligible, and the Mets could easily go with Wilfredo Tovar (who’s already on the 40-man roster) in Quintanilla’s backup spot next year.

Another player who’s on the edge is Kirk Nieuwenhuis, but his spot is probably more secure than Valdespin’s or Quintanilla’s.

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