Friday, January 9, 2009

Redding to the Mets

After a bit of speculation, it appears that starting pitcher Tim Redding is the Mets' newest acquisition, reportedly agreeing to a one year, $2.25 million contract. This by no means is a fix to the rotation, as he will likely only be coming in as competition for the fifth spot in the rotation with Jon Niese.

As I heard the rumors, I was excited at the prospect of adding Redding. Not that he's a big time acquisition, but I think he could be a decent end of the rotation guy if Niese is not ready to pitch at the Major League level with consistent success. Maybe it has to do with the name Redding also being attached to an outstanding baseball family in my hometown as I was growing up, but I've always liked Tim.

Looking at his game log from last season, while the numbers aren't much (10-11, 4.95 ERA, 1.43 WHIP, and about a 2:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio), one thing you see is a 3-1 record against the Phillies (plus a 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, no decision). And that's pitching for the Washington Nationals. Sign him up!

However, one area of concern, especially with this team, is that in 33 starts, only two lasted longer than six innings. A big part of the blame for the bullpen woes the previous two seasons have been that they are getting worn out from overuse because, with the exception of Johan, the starters are not pitching deep enough into games.

This is not the kind of pitcher we want as a starting pitcher for a full season. He's turning 31, so it's not like you can hope for much better. If Niese can be reliable, and can pitch deeper into games, Redding may be better off as a long man in the bullpen or an emergency starter. But he does give us more options, and that's always a good thing.

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