So who is Willie Randolph going to bring North to comprise his shaky bullpen? We know these guys are in:
Mike DeJean (if he's not hurt)
These guys are probable:
Felix Heredia (ugh)
And these guys are duking it out for the last three spots:
Mike Matthews (2IP, 1H, 1R on 3/29)
Mr. Koo (2IP, 1BB, 2K on 3/28)
Bartolome Fortunato (2IP, 3H, 2K on 3/29)
Heath Bell (2IP, 2H, 2R, 2K on 3/29)
Manny Aybar (2IP, 1H, 0R, 2K on 3/29-3/30)
Jose Santiago (1IP, 4H, 3R on 3/30)
Aybar has 11 strikeouts and one walk in 10.2 innings this spring, which is outstanding. Bell has identical K and BB marks in 11.2 innings. Mr. Koo has 12 strikeouts and 4 walks in 11.2 innings. Fortunato is 4/1 in 9 innings.
For me, the choice should be out of those four. Bell, the official pitcher of MetsGeek should be a lock in my mind. Unfortunately, Willie and I tend to disagree on a number of things. If Felix Heredia is healthy and does make the club, I will be extremely disappointed. It also means that the Mets have the option of sending Mr. Koo down the the minors, as he has options remaining.
I like Fortunato a lot, and think he should probably be on the big league roster. Aybar has been unreal this Spring, and would certainly be willing to give him a shot at the pen, too.
The big name missing here is Orber Moreno, who is on the disabled list for the foreseeable future. I can see him being the closer of this team for a long time to come. I hope to see him back soon.
Speaking of bullpens, Damien had a new article on MetsGeek yesterday about Mike DeJean and his likelihood of collapse in 2005 with the Mets. Also, OFF has an article up for Thursday about the Mets bullpen picture and how they could very realistically build from within a la the Anaheim Angels steller relief corps.