The New York Mets officially pulled the plug on their six-man rotation over the weekend. The odd man out is veteran Dillon Gee, who is headed to the bullpen after struggling last week in his first start back from the disabled list.
The Mets’ front office pushed the idea as a way to conserve the innings for Matt Harvey as he returns from Tommy John surgery, and to control the workload of young starters Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard as well.
The glut of starters only adds to the speculation the Mets will trade for an extra bat to bolster their injury-plagued lineup. Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News reports the Mets “have amped up their attempts to trade Gee and lefthander Jon Niese in an attempt to make room in their rotation for lefty prospect Steven Matz.”
The 24-year-old Matz has a 1.94 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in 12 outings for Las Vegas in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League.
Here’s a look at more news and rumors on Draft Day:
Nick Swisher: Remember when the Cleveland Indians actively pursued Swisher as a free agent in the winter of 2012, complete with a recruiting pitch from Jim Tressel? The Tribe landed Swisher with a four-year, $56 million deal, but have little to show for it. Swisher is hitting .229/.319/.380 in two plus seasons for the Indians, and there is little the Indians can do. Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer says there is “no way” Swisher is going to be released when they still owe him $15 million for next year. Trading Swisher at this point also is next to impossible.
Rafael Soriano: The Cubs have been mentioned as a possible suitor for the free agent reliever, and the decision of manager Joe Maddon to remove closer Hector Rondon from Saturday’s game in Washington adds to the intrigue. Soriano recently dropped agent Scott Boras and switched to Octagon Baseball, which represents Maddon.
Minnesota Twins: The surprising start by the Twins this season has cooled the talk of rushing top prospects such as Byron Buxton, Jose Berrios and Miguel Sano to the major leagues, reports Chip Scoggins of the Star Tribune.
Corey Hart: With just six plate appearsances since May 16, Hart’s hold on a roster spot with the Pirates could be a tenuous one, suggests Travis Sawchik of the Tribune Review. The right-handed hitting Hart was not in the starting lineup Sunday against Braves southpaw Alex Wood.
Tyler Clippard: The righthanded reliever could draw interest from several teams looking to add a setup man. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says the Yankees, Twins, Cardinals and Blue Jays, among others, will inquire if the A's find themselves out of contention.
Bruce Rondon: The Tigers’ reliever was rocked Saturday night in an outing for Triple-A Toledo, allowing four runs and four hits in one-plus inning. A timetable for a return from the disabled list remains unclear.
Cincinnati Reds: All signs pointed to the Reds being trade deadline sellers, but they have played over .500 ball the last two weeks. The next few weeks should decide how the Reds will move forward, says Mark Sheldon of MLB.com.