As it seems everybody and his brother is posting mid-term grades for players around the league, I may as well throw my beanie in the ring, too. Marks are on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being Jose Lima and 10 being Steve Nebraska. I'm only going to look at guys currently on the active roster, so no Jorge Julio, etc. Without further adieu...
-- BULLPEN --Chad Bradford -- 7
Cmt: Bradford is second in all of baseball in preventing inherited runners to score (B.J. Ryan is first), having allowed 4.5 fewer runners to score than average. He has also been murder on righties, as has been his calling card throughout his career, holding them to a .235/.260/.306 line thus far in 2006. Lefties are doing far better (.269/.345/.385), and Bradford would be much more useful to the Mets were Willie Randolph to use him almost exclusively as a ROOGY.
Pedro Feliciano -- 7
Cmt: A pleasant surprise, though ironically Feliciano, whom Randolph uses as something of a power LOOGY, has been more effective against righties (.224/.289/.328) than he has been against southpaws (.284/.310/.388).
Aaron Heilman -- 5
Cmt: Heilman's ERA by month...
What's worse, he has been terrible against lefties, who are hitting .270/.377/.393. This was a strength of Heilman's last season, but now lefties are lighting him up. Check out this split:
AB BB Lefties 89 15 Righties 98 2Not sure what's up with that, but it's not encouraging.
Darren Oliver -- 8.5
Cmt: The guy has been awesome. He was a marginal starter for most of his career and now he is a critical component of the Mets' staff. He has been effective against righties (.212/.291/.310) and flat out nasty against lefties (.152/.208/.258). I would have no problem giving him some spot starts down the stretch to rest the rotation and/or prevent Jose Lima from ever pitching for the Mets ever again ever.
Henry Owens -- INC
Cmt: Throws gas, hasn't commanded his off-speed stuff just yet.
Duaner Sanchez -- 8
Cmt: I was tempted to make this mark lower because Sanchez was dreadful for much of May and June, but he didn't allow a run in April and has yet to allow one in July. His strikeout rate is not impressive, but he gets a lot of groundballs and he's been better than advertised.
Billy Wagner -- 8
Cmt: He's not a $10 million closer, and he's going to get worse, not better, over the course of his contract. However, Wagner still throws smoke, and he still gets batters out. The walks are a concern, but his strikeout rate is phenomenal and his hit rate is still terrific. Not that you can just throw away a crummy month for the sake of proving your argument, but here is what Wags has done if we discard May:
ERA 1.30 SO/9 10.41 BB/9 3.25 H/9 5.53 WHIP 0.98May counts just as much as the other months, but it's entirely possible that May was an outlier and the rest of his season is a better indicator of his performance.
That's it for the pen. I'll post the rest of the team in the next couple of days. I'm sure your hearts are palpitating.