The Mets are more likely to search for bullpen help internally than make a trade
After a rough weekend against in which the Mets got swept by the Pirates, the bullpen–specifically Bobby Parnell–really struggled, taking losses in all three games.
Questions have been raised if the Mets would go out looking to acquire yet another reliever, even after the trades for Tyler Clippard and Eric O’Flaherty, however when asked about this today by the New York Post’s Mike Puma, general manager Sandy Alderson downplayed that idea. “I don’t forsee us making a trade,” Alderson told Puma.
If this is true and the Mets are not going to go out there and add another bullpen arm via trade, than they must look internally at their options.
In the last two weeks, Mets relievers are 1-3 with a 4.24 ERA and a 4.98 xFIP. Bobby Parnell has struggled mightily in particular, as he’s 0-3 with a 10.61 ERA in the last 30 days. That ERA is the second worst on the team in that span, behind new arrival Eric O’Flaherty’s 13.50 ERA since joining the team. O’Flaherty was brought here to get left-handed hitters out, and in a small sample so far, he hasn’t done that as lefties are 5-for-11 (.455) with a double and three RBI in 3.1 innings since joining the team.
One internal option the team could possibly look as is right-hander Vic Black, who’s posted a career ERA of 2.96 over the course of three seasons. While Black’s overall numbers in Triple-A Las Vegas may not look pretty–he’s 1-5 with a 5.16 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP–he’s pitched extremely well out of the bullpen recently. In his last 12 outings, spanning 11.1 innings pitched, Black has allowed just one earned run, good for a 0.80 ERA in that time.
The walks have always been a concern for Black, who’s averaging 6.14 walks per 9 innings in Triple-A this season. However, Black averaged 8.20 walks per 9 innings last season in the minors and was still able to contribute in the major leagues when his number was called as he posted a 2.60 ERA in 41 appearances with the Mets in 2014.
Other options for the Mets internally could be left-handers Dario Alvarez, who profiles more as a left-handed specialist as lefties are hitting .154 against him in Triple-A than Josh Smoker, who like Sean Gilmartin is more effective against righties than lefties.
From the right-handed side, Erik Goeddel may return to the team prior to September 1st after missing more than two months due to a severe elbow strain. Goeddel proved to be very effective out of the bullpen this season prior to his stint on the disabled list, posting a 1.96 ERA in 23 innings pitched.
Logan Verrett could also be a potential valuable addition to the bullpen, as he has a 2.95 ERA with a 1.08 WHIP overall this season and a 0.73 ERA in six appearances with the Mets after the former Rule Fiver was returned to the team from the Rangers earlier this season.