The Mets intend to sign a fifth-starter candidate on a minor-league contract to compete with Jenrry Mejia and the team's prospects, who include Rafael Montero and Jacob deGrom. And while it is not clear where he resides on the Mets' preference list, there has been at least some dialogue between Mets officials and the representatives for Freddy Garcia.
Garcia, 37, might make sense for the Mets in that he also has performed out of the bullpen during the past two seasons.
The bottom line is this: Even if the candidate the Mets sign on a minor-league contract ultimately ends up earning the fifth-starter's role over Mejia and the prospects, that pitcher must be capable of swinging over to the bullpen once Noah Syndergaard is promoted in June or July anyway, assuming the other rotation members remain healthy.
Overall, Garcia went 4-7 with a 4.37 ERA in 17 appearances (13 starts) for the Baltimore Orioles and Atlanta Braves last season. After being acquired by Atlanta on Aug. 23, he had a 1.65 ERA in six appearances (three starts). That included 2 2/3 scoreless relief innings in one appearance against the Mets.
Via MLB Trade Rumors, the remaining list of available starting-pitching free agents is below. Keep in mind, though, that Sandy Alderson all but said he is only giving out a minor-league deal. So scratch off players like Bronson Arroyo right away.