By Steven Inman 

Brian Matusz is a lefty who could help the Mets but can the club scrap together enough money to afford him?

Brian Matusz is a lefty who could help the Mets but can the club scrap together enough money to afford him?

The Mets left-handed relief options continue to have lackluster camps, causing Sandy Alderson and company to look externally to find a replacement for Josh Edgin. Edgin underwent Tommy John surgery a few weeks ago,

The Amazins have serious interest in Orioles lefty Brian Matusz, who is available but would need Baltimore to pick up a significant chunk of the southpaw’s $3.2 million 2015 salary, making a trade unlikely. We wrote a few weeks ago that because of Matsuz’s salary he is unlike to be a Met this season. You can check out that article here.

According to Mark Saxon of ESPN LA the Mets are monitoring the Dodgers who have three left-handers with some upside in camp although two of those left-handers can be sent down so the team doesn’t have to make a deal.

The Mets didn’t have much interest in Cardinals lefty Sam Freeman, who was available before being dealt to the Rangers Saturday for a player to be named later or cash.

The Mets sent Scott Rice down to minor league camp Saturday. He was having a very poor spring after a rough 2014 so he will not be the left-hander to get the first opportunity at filling the LOOGY role for the Mets to start the season.

Dario Alvarez and Sean Gilmartin are the lone left-handed relievers still left in camp. Both have a good chance at making the team if the club doesn’t find a lefty outside the organization.

Stay tuned as this could get interesting in the upcoming week….

By Steven Inman

Daniel Murphy has been one of the Mets best hitters over the past few seasons

Daniel Murphy has been one of the Mets best hitters over the past few seasons

In what seems like a foregone conclusion, the Mets lone 2014 All-Star, Daniel Murphy will likely be playing elsewhere in 2016, BrokeMets has been saying this for several months and now in a very interesting article by Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Mets front office is pretty much acknowledging their limited resources are better off being used elsewhere.

He’s been a very good player and is a very good player,” Mets assistant GM John Ricco said in the Post article about Murphy. “The question comes down to managing assets, and we have young players we are high on that play that position.” If the team isn’t even denying that they won’t keep Murphy then guess what? They won’t be keeping Murphy.

Murphy, now the second longest tenured Met on the team behind David Wright, remains unlikely to be ready for Opening Day with a strained hamstring. Murphy took five at bats in a minor league game Saturday but Terry Collins admits the second basemen is doubtful to head north with the major league club next week. “He’s running out of time,” Collins said. “We don’t have a lot of time to get him ready.” the Mets manager told the media Friday.

Should Murphy be unable to go Opening Day the Mets can backdate his DL stint so he would only miss five games and would likely put Danny Muno on the MLB roster. Muno, 26, has yet to make his major league debut. The Mets 8th round pick in 2011 (Sandy’s first draft) has had a very good spring training.

Murphy, who will turn 30 next week, is likely looking at a four year contract worth somewhere around $36-40 million total as a free agent. This Met front office has never been high on Murphy but have been frustrated with the trade offers they have received for #28 over the past few seasons which is why he is still here. If the Mets are out of the race in July perhaps they try to trade Murph again, if not consider this long-time Met a rental as we enter the 2015 season.

By Steven Inman

Join WSJU radio personality Rob DeLucia as well as myself on the latest edition of the BrokeMets podcast. We recap all the Mets injuries, the Mets Opening Day starter decision, Sandy Alderson “Baseball Maverick” and so much more.

Remember if you want to have a question answered on the next podcast, leave it below in the comment section.

By Steven Inman

The Mets don't have to deal with left-handed bats in the N.L. East like Jason Heyward who was dealt to the Cardinals this winter

The Mets don’t have to deal with left-handed bats in the N.L. East like Jason Heyward who was dealt to the Cardinals this winter

While power hitters are becoming endangered in major league baseball there is something that has become even rarer and that is left-handed pop. In an excellent article by Joel Sherman of the New York Post, Sherman details how rare the left-handed slugger truly has become. Only one of the top eight home run hitters in 2014 was left-handed.

Just eight left-handed hitters hit 25 or more dingers in 2014, the fewest in a 162-game season since 1992. So how does that relate to the Mets?

Well its simple, the Mets, who currently don’t have a reliable lefty reliever in their pen may not have to game plan for that big lefty bopper as much as originally thought. While Freddie Freeman is still a big bat to save a lefty specialist for, there aren’t nearly as many as their used to be in the N.L. East. Ryan Howard and Chase Utley are obviously not the threats they used to be. Jason Heyward is now out of the division. Bryce Harper hasn’t established himself as a player you have to fear late in games, just yet anyway.

Terry Collins and company still need to solve this bullpen hole but if they don’t, it won’t be the reason 2015 isn’t successful.

By Steven Inman

The Mets don't have the depth to replace a pitcher like Vic Black, should he miss any extended time

The Mets don’t have the depth to replace a pitcher like Vic Black, should he miss any extended time (Photo by NY Post)

While the New York Mets have an impressive group of young arms in their bullpen that includes hard throwing right-handers like Jenrry Mejia and Jeurys Familia, injuries have hurt this once promising group.

The team is already without Josh Edgin, who was the lone left-hander projected to make the Opening Day bullpen. Vic Black is also banged up and doesn’t look like he’ll be ready for Opening Day according to Terry Collins. The team has looked at internal options to replace Edgin but none have pitched well to date. The team will look to waivers to find a left-handed reliever so the lack of depth is obvious with just two weeks to go before Opening Day.

A pitcher like Buddy Carlyle who pitched well in 27 appearances for the Mets last season now looks like a lock to make the Opening Day bullpen. While Carlyle looked solid with the Mets last season, he is 37 years old and has pitched in just 31.0 big league innings since 2011.

While the team has plenty of starting pitching depth, they don’t have a ton of guys ready and able to pitch in key bullpen innings for the Mets down on the farm. Bobby Parnell is expected to pitch early on in the season but having pitched in just one major league game since July 2013, it is unfair to count on him for a significant role just yet. Stay tuned Met fans this issue could be something to watch…

By Steven Inman 

Matusz has spent all six years of his major league career with the Orioles after Baltimore selected him with the fourth overall pick in the 2009 draft

Matusz has spent all six years of his major league career with the Orioles after Baltimore selected him with the fourth overall pick in the 2009 draft

With Josh Edgin down, the New York Mets are in search of his replacement in the bullpen. According to various media reports the Mets have been scouting Orioles lefty Brian Matusz and believe he could help the club’s bullpen. Matusz, 28, has emerged as a key left-handed weapon in the Orioles bullpen after failing as a starter during his first four big league seasons. Matusz would be a great addition to the Mets bullpen and would help fill a glaring need.

Having said that, Brian Matusz will not be a Met in 2015.

First off Matusz is a key component to the Orioles bullpen. He held left-handed hitters to a .227 average in 2014. While the Orioles have other left-handed options such as closer Zach Britton and free agent signing Wesley Wright, it is highly unlikely that they would be interested in dealing Matusz this close to the season without something of value in return.

Secondly while Matusz is under club control through 2016, he is entering his third season of arbitration as a Super Two player and will earn $3.2 million in 2015. If the Mets didn’t have interest in giving a lefty like Joe Beimel a contract in the $1 million range, they probably don’t have interest in paying Matusz more than triple that in addition to giving up players.

It is also unclear if the Mets could fit such a contract into their budget at this time without trading a major league player on a similar 2015 salary.

While the Mets are scouring around for a lefty, it is more likely the need is addressed internally or from an unproven pitcher who is unable to make his current club and is about to be put through waivers.

The Edgin news increases the chances that LHP Sean Gilmartin will make the club but the team sees him more as a long man in a bullpen not as a lefty specialist. Gilmartin, like other Mets LHP options for the bullpen has not impressed much early on in camp.

How should the Mets address this underrated issue?

By Steven Inman

After giving Zack Wheeler an MRI as a precaution, the club is expected to lose their young right-hander for the 2015 season (Photo by Newsday)

After giving Zack Wheeler an MRI as a precaution, the club is shockingly expected to lose their young right-hander for the 2015 season (Photo by Newsday)

Just when you think the Mets were ready to turn the corner more bad news strikes.

After learning days ago that LHP Josh Edgin will have Tommy John surgery, we learn today that RHP Zack Wheeler has a torn UCL and will likely have TJ surgery as well. When will the hits stop coming to this poor snakebitten franchise.

Terry Collins and company didn’t even feel it was necessary the other day to give Wheeler the MRI since he just had a clean one over the winter. It’s just very disappointing news on what is expected to be a better season for the New York Mets.

While Wheeler looked primed for a big season (I suggested the club should give him a contract extension a few months ago) there are a few small positives about the timing of this news. First off since the Mets overvalued Dillon Gee’s market, he is still here and can now slot into Wheeler’s spot in the rotation.

Next since Wheeler will likely his surgery sometime next week he would be on track to return to the majors next April, barring a setback. Finally because of the starting pitching depth on the major league and the minors league rosters this won’t kill the Mets season just yet. Although one more bad piece of injury news and they could be done for.

Nevertheless this is still very bad news for a young team trying to breakout. Now even more pressure is on Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and now even Jon Niese to carry this club.