According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Mets are signing relief pitcher Neil Ramirez to a major league contract. He is expected to report immediately to the big league team. The right-handed Ramirez was granted free agency by the Blue Jays on Sunday after being selected off waivers from the Giants earlier this month.
Ramirez had his most successful season in 2014 with the Cubs, where he appeared in 50 games, putting up a 1.44 ERA with 53 strikeouts and only 17 walks, while giving up only two home runs. Since then, he has battled shoulder injuries and general ineffectiveness, even if his strikeout rate has remained impressive.
This season, Ramirez has given up 15 hits in 10.1 innings of work, while giving up two home runs, 15 runs, and four walks. He did strike out 18 batters, so the ability to miss bats is still there. When they connect, however, they appear to be connecting with some authority.
The Mets’ bullpen is in a state of free fall right now, with Jeurys Familia undergoing surgery, Hansel Robles’s back-to-back poor outings, and being the most taxed bullpen in the majors by a significant margin. Even if Ramirez isn’t the type of reliever who will turn the tide, he will, hopefully, provide an opportunity to rest a few of the other arms.
The Mets won’t need to make a corresponding 40-man roster move, as they can simply transfer Familia to the 60-day disabled list. The signing has not yet been made official by the team. They will need to make room on the active roster if they want Ramirez available in the big league bullpen.