New York Mets

Mets sign Dellin Batances to upgrade their bullpen

The New York Mets have signed Dellin Betances to a one-year deal. They are hoping that he can bounce back to help their bullpen in 2020.

The New York Mets have reportedly signed free agent relief pitcher Dellin Betances to a one-year deal worth $10.5 million. Betances could earn $13 million if he makes 70 appearances in 2020. There also is a player option for 2021 and a vesting player option for 2022, according to the report. Betances comes over from the crosstown New York Yankees.

Betances, who will be 32 on Opening Day, was one of the most highly sought after relief pitchers on the market this offseason despite the fact that he only got into one game in 2019 due to injury. Before that, he was one of the game’s most dominant relievers, spending his entire career with the Yankees.

The right-hander was an All-Star for four straight years between 2014 and 2017. Between 2014 and 2018, Betances had an ERA of 3.08 or lower while pitching in at least 59 2/3 innings each year. In an era where strikeouts are on the rise, Betances has stood out in that regard, striking out over 100 in each of those five years while striking out 14.6 batters per nine innings throughout his career.

The Mets are counting on a bounceback year from Betances, as he is joining a Mets bullpen that has the potential to be loaded if everyone pitches as well as they have in previous seasons. In 2020, they’ll need bounceback years from Edwin Diaz and Jeurys Familia, both of whom had an ERA over 5.00 in 2019. Seth Lugo and Justin Wilson also had nice 2019 seasons, while Brad Brach was solid after coming over during the season from the Chicago Cubs.

Despite being in a loaded division with the World Champion Washington Nationals, defending division champion Atlanta Braves, and the up-and-coming Philadelphia Phillies, the Mets clearly believe they can contend in 2020 under new manager Carlos Beltran. Despite losing Zack Wheeler to the Phillies, they figure to still have a strong rotation and have added Michael Wacha and Rick Porcello already this winter.

The Mets likely will now turn their attention to the offense; in particular, they’ll need a third baseman as Todd Frazier is a free agent. However, the Mets are building a deep and strong pitching staff both in the rotation and the bullpen, and if they pitch up to expectations, expect the Mets to be right in the middle of the National League East race next year.

Next: Blue Jays get aggressive with signing of Hyun-Jin Ryu

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