NY Mets: 18 awesome innings from Guillermo Mota in 2006
By Tim Boyle
A career spanning from 1999-2012, nobody seemed to define unpredictability from the bullpen better than Guillermo Mota. He had a nice mix of excellent, terrible, and average seasons. In August of 2006, after having one of those horrific years with the Cleveland Indians, he joined the New York Mets.
The club purchased him and his 6.21 ERA in 37.2 innings of work. Somehow, things ended up working out incredibly well down the stretch in the regular season.
Mota wasn’t just another arm for the Mets. He helped secure them some victories and often found himself pitching in team wins.
Guillermo Mota gave the Mets 18 awesome innings in 2006
Mota’s 2006 season with the Mets included one of the finest ERAs you can find from a guy who tossed at least 18 innings. Mota allowed just two runs and struck out 19. The 1.00 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, and 3-0 record all made for a nice two-game’s worth of innings.
It all began with a shutout inning on August 22 against the team’s future playoff foe, St. Louis Cardinals. Mota also struck out a pair of batters, something he would do in each of his first four appearances for the Mets.
Strikeouts were commonplace for Mota. So were appearances in wins. This was the case for many of the team’s relievers because the 2006 team was fantastic.
Even late in the season when the Mets took their foot off the pedal they were winning games and allowing Mota to step on the mound in many of them. In game 162, he was declared the winner in a four-inning appearance from starter Oliver Perez. His shutout innings in the eighth, even with the team already leading since the second inning, was apparently enough for the official scorer to award Mota with the win.
Those who were around in 2006 to watch the Mets know the fun seemed to end after this appearance. His first trip to the postseason was in 2006. He had a 6.75 ERA in 4 NLDS innings and a 4.15 ERA in 4.1 NLCS frames. Small sample sizes, there was no excuse for how bad things were in 2007.
A free agent after the 2006 season, Mota re-signed with New York but not before receiving a 50-game suspension for PEDs. The suspension should have been a sign of things to come.
Mota pitched in 59.1 innings for the 2007 team and ended the year with a 5.76 ERA. Dissatisfied, he was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers in the offseason for Johnny Estrada—who would be non-tendered just a few days later and released.
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There isn’t much about Mota’s New York stint to look back at positively aside from those 18 innings in 2006. We’ll also have them. Too bad the PED suspension happened to erase it all.