The Mets and Giants are scheduled to make up Sunday’s wash out with a single-admission double header Monday starting at 4:10pm. The new rule in 2012 allows for teams to expand their roster to 26 for double-dips, and it appears the Mets are still deciding. Jordany Valdespin and Jeremy Hefner are both in Flushing and both in uniform, but it has not yet been announced which one will get the official call-up.
Valdespin opened some eyes in Spring Training, and is off to a nice start in Triple-A Buffalo with 2 home runs and 7 RBI. The middle infielder is one of the top position players in the Mets farm system, and it would definitely be intriguing to watch him play. But let’s remember- this is a roster expansion for 24 hours only, and it is specifically meant to give the team an extra body to handle the rigors of two games in one day. Because of that, the call up HAS to go to pitcher Jeremy Hefner.
I will admit, I know almost nothing about Hefner, other than the fact that he is a 26-year old right-handed pitcher. And his numbers so far in Triple-A have been solid- he is 2-1 in 3 starts with a 1.96 ERA. But the numbers are irrelevant. The bottom line is when you have a 24-hour window to add one player and you are in a double-header, it simply makes so much more sense to add a pitcher. Valdespin most likely wouldn’t get to play anyway, unless a pinch-hitting opportunity presented itself.
With pitch counts at a premium and bullpens being exhausted on a daily basis, the Mets need to take advantage of the opportunity to add an arm. Miguel Batista is starting the first game, and may not last 5 innings. If he can’t make it far into the game the pen will be overused before the night cap even begins. Jordany Valdespin could be fun to watch, but unless he can pitch this is not the time for a call-up. Sandy Alderson is an intelligent GM, and I think he will make the right call. This is a day to add a hurler to the team.