The New York Mets and New York Yankees compete in more ways than most teams. Airtime on sports talk radio. Money from the fans. Approval from the Mayor. Two teams in one gigantic city don’t even have to play each other to go up against one another.
These two sometimes even compete for players in the offseason. Occasionally, someone switches from one team to the other.
We saw a pair of pitchers actually get swiped away from the Yankees by the Mets this winter. They were only available because the Yankees allowed them to be unprotected. Will either make the Yankees look foolish?
NY Mets pitchers Zach Greene and Stephen Ridings have a chance to embarrass the Yankees
Zach Greene had a pretty awesome year in Triple-A last year. However, with a chance to protect him by adding him to their 40-man roster, the Yankees chose to let him go into the Rule 5 Draft. The Mets ended up taking him. This spring, he’s competing to win a permanent stay in Queens. Greene will have to pitch well because as a Rule 5 Draft pick, there is no sending him to the minors at all. If they want to move on, they’ll have to send him back to the Yankees. His early spring performance has not been strong. He has already allowed 5 earned runs in 3.2 innings of work.
Stephen Ridings is in a much different spot. Coming off of Tommy John Surgery, he’s looking to get his career back on track as a member of the crosstown Mets. His stay with the Amazins is far more likely to extend into the regular season. Unlike Greene, the Mets can stash him on the farm. He can join the cycle of pitchers going up and down from the minors to the majors throughout the season. He has yet to pitch this spring for the blue and orange.
Players have frequently gone from the Mets to the Yankees or vice versa in one way or another. Last offseason, the Miguel Castro for Joely Rodriguez deal was an agreement between the two clubs to ensure there’d be one player from each club swapping hats. An injury for Castro and Rodriguez’s below-average performance made it a far less impactful trade than the two teams were hoping for.
Greene will either sink or swim with the Mets while Ridings could be a project the team holds off on starting. They’re also joined by another member of last year’s Yankees this spring, Tim Locastro. He was a minor league free agent signing. If all fails with Greene and Ridings, maybe his quick feet in the postseason gives the Yankees a tinge of regret they didn’t think they’d have.