6 pitchers who should get every inning possible this spring

New York Mets v Philadelphia Phillies
New York Mets v Philadelphia Phillies / Rich Schultz/GettyImages
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The World Baseball Classic this March will give some other players an opportunity to sneak into New York Mets spring training games and get more playing time than they might otherwise. Spring training is a chance to see what some players can offer.

Although the Mets don’t have too many decisions to make regarding the Opening Day roster that these exhibition games will help answer, there are certain players whose exact role remains undefined.

The pitching staff is where the Mets, and most teams, have the availability to make changes. Only an injury would change most of the roster decisions for this team when it comes to the position players. The bullpen, with possibly three open slots, is a battle between several arms. Getting through spring training healthy is the first step. Producing is the next.

It’s these pitchers we should keep a close eye on this spring as they’ll all be in a battle to make their way into the bullpen or climb the depth chart.

1) NY Mets need to see if Jose Butto has the stuff to be a starter

Jose Butto will definitely not be on the Mets Opening Day roster. He’s hidden behind Tylor Megill and David Peterson on the depth chart as a starting pitcher. He may even fall behind another guy or two. His presence on the 40-man roster does make him an easy and available candidate to be promoted whenever the team needs to break glass and find someone to give them a couple of innings as a starter.

Butto should only start games this spring for the Mets. A transition to the bullpen, the end outcome for many starters, can wait. The team needs to get a better idea of whether or not he has the stuff to be a starter in the major leagues. Spring training won’t answer this question. It can give them a better idea.

Last year on the farm, Butto was 7-6 with a 3.56 ERA in 129 innings of work. His one start for the Mets was bad but the same has been true for many pitchers. This season is the year where he could be a more regular arm in the rotation in case of an injury. The Mets should take the time to get to know him a little better this spring and whether or not he could be a future candidate to remain a starter or if a relief role is where he eventually lands.