As you undoubtedly already know, the Mets plan on using a six-man rotation, starting now and continuing through at least August. This is a bad idea.
I’m not the only one who does not like it. In fact, all of the pitchers in the rotation are not happy about it (except perhaps for Dillon Gee, who would likely be out of the rotation if Sandy Alderson was man enough to make the proper decision).
The Mets say they want to give their young guns and their old Civil War era pistol (Bartolo Colon) rest so they will be nice and fresh for the end of the season. It is sound thinking, but the players who would be getting the rest do not want it. That should give the Mets pause. No one except Alderson and mouthpiece Terry Collins wants this.
“It is better for the player and better for the organization, at least, until we get to where we feel like we have plenty of innings left in September and still have the possibility of innings left in October,” said another company line spewer, Dan Warthen, according to Mets Blog.
Once again, the Mets are babying their pitchers, afraid of letting them play. Maybe this will keep them from getting injured. But remember, the Mets treated Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler with kid gloves and they needed Tommy John surgery anyway. Maybe just letting pitchers throw is the best treatment.
More than most baseball players, pitchers rely on routine. They start, they take a day or two off, throw in the bullpen, then they start again. An extra day of rest throws the routine out the window. Now there will be two bullpen sessions, and Collins has even talked about having starters throw batting practice as a way to keep them sharp. Does anyone think that is a good idea?
Joel Sherman wrote an interesting article in the New York Post today that also lambasted the idea. His story focused mostly on Matt Harvey, who has been the most outspoken against the idea. While I agree with Sherman, I do not agree with his basic theory — that the Mets could lose Harvey to free agency in three years, so why not just use him as much as possible while he is on the team? Sherman was quick to point out that there is a difference between using Harvey and abusing him.
I agree that the Mets should use their best pitchers as often as possible. But the idea that losing a player three years from now should be a factor is nonsense. But hey, everybody is entitled to their own opinion.
Speaking of using players as much as possible, where does Steven Matz fit into this equation? The guy is major league ready and is wasting pitches in Las Vegas. If one of the six Mets starters goes down, does Matz get the call or do the Mets just revert to a five-man staff? And what if no one gets injured and Matz keeps making his case? Do the Mets go to a seven-man rotation? Of course not. But it just shows how delaying decisions may not be the best thing for the team.
The best thing for the Mets would be to move Gee to the bullpen, call up Matz and trade Colon or Jonathon Niese for whatever you could get. Then have a five-man rotation of Harvey, jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Matz and Niese/Colon. I’d take that into battle in a pennant race. I would not go in with a six-man rotation.