While the Mets’ 9-1 defeat of Houston last night marked the end of Livan Hernandez’ tenure with the Astros, New York starter Mike Pelfrey’s 6.1 IP of one-run baseball might either be his last solid showing in blue & orange, or perhaps a new lease on life. The New York Daily News’ Andy Martino reports the cost-conscious Mets have weighed waiving Pelfrey before the start of the 2012 season, though he’s quick to point out, “none of the uniformed staff was in favor of the idea.” So it’s good to know Terry Collins doesn’t attend such meetings in the nude.
One team official characterized the recent discussion about cutting Pelfrey as “just what you do in meetings, throwing (stuff) against the wall, and we throw a lot of (stuff) against the wall,” and went on to predict that Pelfrey would have a strong year for the Mets.
But still: The very consideration of releasing Pelfrey and replacing him in the starting rotation with Chris Schwinden strongly suggests that club brass is not enamored of the seventh-year Met, who might very well be in his final season with the team — if he remains in New York for that long.
As for the suggestion of releasing Pelfrey, part of the idea was the pitcher’s non-guaranteed contract. If the Mets cut him before Opening Day, they will owe him roughly $1 million of the $5.68 million he will be paid this season.
In the recent meeting, some in the front office wondered if that money would be better spent bolstering the Mets’ 2012 roster depth, with Schwinden in the rotation in place of Pelfrey. Schwinden remains in major-league camp, surviving another round of roster cuts on Thursday.