Relief pitcher Duaner Sanchez was designated for assignment by the San Diego Padres today. If you recall, he was released by the Mets during spring training in March. With San Diego Sanchez was 1-1 with a 9.00 ERA and 2.36 WHIP. Even the lowly Padres couldn’t handle that.
WFAN’s Eddie Coleman calls in from Port St. Lucie to Joe & Evan talking about the Duaner Sanchez release and the bullpen options for the Mets.
There’s been so much chatter recently about the Mets having a looming decision about whether to keep Duaner Sanchez or release him. I thought they would at least give him a look until the end of March.
By releasing him now the Mets are only responsible for one-sixth of his $1,687,500 salary for the 2009 season. The Mets didn’t have much of a choice after he got knocked around pretty well last season. He didn’t look great this spring either. I watched him get knocked around a bit yesterday against the Orioles. He was only able to hit 89 mph on the radar gun yesterday and that was high for him over the past two seasons.
From the NY Times:
“We looked at it, really, his over all performance based upon last year to what we see now and we didn’t see the improvement,” Minaya said.
This could end up being a good thing for Sanchez. He could sign a minor league deal elsewhere and have a chance to work his way onto the major league roster. He didn’t have options so the Mets had to keep him on the major league roster or release him.
After not pitching at all in 2007 after an accident in a taxi in July 2006, he came back last season to very mixed results. He had a 4.32 ERA and 1.320 WHIP in 66 games in 2008. He was really a shadow of his former self with very reduced velocity and couldn’t find himself as a finesse pitcher.
The big news today is that the Mets are playing their first spring training game against the Orioles in Fort Lauderdale. Sean Green was hurt pitching in the first inning. The early word is that he split a finger nail on his pitching hand.
Onto the news of the day:
- John Harper wrote a nice piece on Fernando Martinez for the Daily News. It’s a good summary of how the 20-year old prospect is doing offensively. And he may be in the big leagues at some point this season.
- John Maine pitched two scoreless innings yesterday. It was the first game that he’s pitched in since last August 23rd. You’ll remember that he had a bone spur on his pitching shoulder that required surgery.
- Joel Sherman of the NY Post writes a column about the Mets releasing or trading Duaner Sanchez by April 1st. He suggests that Sanchez may not find a spot on the major league roster for the Mets.
- Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports writes about the 12 major league managers that don’t have contracts that are guaranteed beyond this season
- Drew Silva at MLB Trade Rumors writes about the Phillies’ payroll at $132.5 million is the highest in franchise history.
With the acquisitions of J.J. Putz and Francisco Rodriguez, Duaner Sanchez’ stock has lowered dramatically this season. Last year, returning from a major shoulder injury, he didn’t look like himself at all. His velocity was way down and his breaking ball didn’t bite at all. It was more of a floating break.
He’ll be pitching in the middle innings this year, not entrusted with the late innings as he was in his terrific 2006 season. But how could he be? He finished 2008 with a 4.32 ERA, way above his career 3.91 ERA.
It would be great to see him return to form but that nasty shoulder injury might have taken too much out of his body. Click the link below to watch a video of him talking about the upcoming 2009 season.
Mets’ Sanchez ready for ’09
Today the Mets agreed with Duaner Sanchez on a 1-year/$1,687,500 contract. That’s one of the six players off the Mets board that are salary arbitration eligible. Last season Sanchez made $950,00.
I have to say that I was really disappointed in Sanchez at several points last season. He had his up’s and down’s. He finished the season with a good 5-1 record but with a 4.32 ERA and 1.320 WHIP. The latter stats were major drop off’s from his prior three seasons. Of course, he didn’t pitch at all in 2007 after injuring his shoulder in a car accident. He’s just never looked the same to me since then. His fastball isn’t even close to the mid-90’s, where he was before the injury.
The Mets decided to offer contracts to all five arbitration elegible players. Ryan Church, John Maine, Pedro Feliciano, Duaner Sanchez, and Jeremy Reed were all offered contracts.
The Mets have a history of agreeing to contracts without going to salary arbitration with their players. Last year Oliver Perez won $6.75 million in arbitration and that was the first time the Mets went to arbitration in 16 years. After the Mets got spanked there, expect them to agree to contracts with all five players before the deadline on Feb. 1.
The Mets lost the first game of their seven game road trip today in Pittsburgh. John Maine gutted through five innings even though he clearly didn’t have his good stuff. His fastball was in the mid-80’s for most of the game.
The Mets generated very little offense on a day when Jose Reyes had the day off. Jerry Manuel was ejected in the third inning for arguing a call. Argenis Reyes was called out for making a slight turn at first base on an overthrow by Jack Wilson. Reyes was tagged by the catcher and called out.
The story of the game has to be another game blown by the shaky Mets bullpen. Pedro Feliciano and Duaner Sanchez couldn’t get the job done in the eighth inning and let another game get away. It seems like that’s becoming the story of the 2008 season.