Posted by Ernest Dove at 10:00 AM
Yes, I get it, He's turning 43 years old in May. He's not getting any younger. He's also not getting any skinnier either. But you know what, that's just the way we love em ;)
Think about what will be probably be getting and expecting of old Bart anyway....... He's coming off a postseason in which he pitched in relief. He pitched 8 2/3 innings, giving up just 2 runs, striking out 7, and being his same old jolly self throughout the process, which is just what this title contending team needs again this year.
In 2015, if my calculations are correct (its late, im probably off by a start) he gave up 3 or less runs in 21 of his starts/outings. Think about that. He also pitched over 190 innings again for the second straight season. Let's also not forget that, from our understanding, Colon entered into this one year extended deal knowing that there are NO plans for him to be expected to start by summer. And so, as the SP5 on this team, how many actual starts are we even expecting from him?
Bart is who he is. He's gonna throw 88-89 MPH. He's gonna have pinpoint accuracy and control.....a lot of the time......He's also going to let some of those under 90 fastballs fall right over the plate and get SMACKED over the wall. He's also going to pitch a few 7-9 innings gems along the way. Then, well then we look for Zack Wheeler to take his rightful place back in the rotation of aces.
The 2016 Mets are all about depth. They have it at many positions, including starting pitching. The Mets also have guys like a Sean Gilmartin whose proven successful at mopping up messes with multiple innings in 'laugher' games that happen from time to time.
I'm not saying the Mets will be conceding games here with Bart on the mound. What I'm saying is that the Mets look to be prepared to go into this season with all hands/arms on deck, and there are more capable back-up options then ever on this team.
Besides, if we are really going to value spring training stats, then let's remind ourselves that guys like 25 year old Logan Verrett are having a SOLID spring, pitching to a sub 2.00 ERA in his outings this month. Sean Gilmartin has been giving up a few more hits than innings pitched in the spring, but he's given up zero homers. Rafael Montero, the new mystery man, in my opinion should never have been expected to succeed this spring because he missed an entire season, plus he is still in his development and growth stage of his career so the time away was all the more costly. He was going to need AAA innings back under his belt, facing actual LIVE batters for at least a couple months in real game situations to get back on track. Heck even Seth Lugo has come out this spring and turned a few heads at least to the point of being a back up option for spot starts or a chance at the major league level. Plus let's once again not forget the really strange schedule the Mets have to start the season. Pretty much all of April, if the Mets so wish, can be started by like 3 or 4 different guys at most.
I envision Bart doing what Bart has done for this team. Throw a few quality starts. Have a blowup game or two. Entertain us with his at bats, model professionalism to the young Latin players on the bench, and help keep this team upbeat all season long as they move towards their quest for another playoff season.
Personally, my concern with Bart will always be the LONG BALL. Both as a starter and potentially the second half of this season as a reliever, I will always worry about one of his not so fast fastballs missing its location. But so goes the game of baseball. Baseball, like football, can always at times be a game of inches. We'll take the good with the bad. Not because we're 'stuck' with him, but because he remains a legit and worthy option to be in the rotation, in the bullpen, and on the 25 man roster again this season.
In the end, this is just my opinion. I welcome you guys to share your thoughts, concerns, and worries. I'm telling you now I will most likely agree with them. But in 2016 I see the Mets as being legitimately 6-9 guys deep as far as capable starters. Of course the basic premise would be that a certain 3-4 guys simply MUST be healthy and remain in the rotation all year for Mets to head back to the playoffs. But if we're talking missed/scratched starts and 15 day DL stints, I think our Mets are covered.
What do you guys think?