Mets now have just two lefties competing for spot in bullpen
After Saturday’s win, the Mets sent left-handed reliever Scott Rice to minor league camp, leaving them with two lefties competing for the remaining spot in the bullpen.
Still in the competition is Rule 5 draftee Sean Gilmartin, and Dario Alvarez, who had a brief cameo in the big leagues with the Mets in 2014.
Rice, 33, had a 5.93 ERA for the Mets last season in 13.2 innings before undergoing season-ending elbow surgery in July.
In 4.2 innings this Spring for the Mets, Rice had a 9.64 ERA and 1.50 WHIP.
Even though Rice had a solid year for the Mets in 2013 (in what was his first in the majors), his injury in 2014 muddied things. The Mets brought Rice back on a minor league deal this winter, but it never seemed like he had a solid shot to make the club out of camp.
Of the lefties still remaining, Sean Gilmartin started Spring Training in a shaky manner but has been solid overall, with the majority of the damage off him coming against right-handed hitters.
Having been obtained in the Rule 5 draft, the Mets must keep Gilmartin on the 25-man roster for the entire season or offer him back to his former team, Minnesota.
Gilmartin has been used almost solely as a starter during his minor league career, but his impressive splits against lefties make him an intriguing candidate for a lefty specialist role.
As far as Alvarez is concerned, while he’s already 26 years old, he only has a handful of innings above High-A ball.
The Mets’ lefty relief situation was thrown into flux when Josh Edgin went down with a torn UCL that will require season-ending Tommy John surgery.
New York has been snooping around the lefty relief market and has been linked to a number of pitchers, including Brian Matusz of the Orioles. However, the Mets reportedly want the Orioles to eat a portion of the salary owed to Matusz this season.
Simply going with Gilmartin in the lefty relief role would be a gamble, but it appears that’s the road the Mets are heading down.
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