Two years after one of the biggest mistakes of Omar Minaya's tenure as General Manager, the Mets have finally released sub-replacement pariah Oliver Perez with one $12 million season remaining on his contract. It's a sad day for nobody and it caps a four-day weekend in which the Mets shed their two least popular players, having jettisoned second baseman Luis Castillo on Friday.
From the outset of spring training, Perez seemed a long shot to make the team in any capacity. He gave it a go as a starter, but the velocity still wasn't there, the bad control still was, and he struggled to get other teams' minor league flotsam out with any regularity. Meanwhile, Chris Capuano and Chris Young, his main competition for the last two spots in the rotation, pitched far better and with considerably less drama.
Perez's last gasp was a pity crack at the bullpen, but after a couple of uninspired relief appearances there was little chance he would see Opening Day with the Mets. Now the axe has dropped and Mets fans will celebrate the end of the Ollie P era in Queens. I have a tiny soft spot for Castillo that isn't shared by many other Mets fans, but I shed no tears over the departure of Perez, who was decent for a couple of seasons but terrible for the last two, and as often as not his attitude matched his lousy performance. A new, Ollie-less day has dawned in Port St. Lucie.