After reportedly agreeing to ship lefty Jon Niese to the Pirates, the Mets have “stepped up their efforts” to bring back free agent righty Bartolo Colon, Marc Carig of Newsday reports on Twitter. There’s “mutual interest” in a reunion, ESPNNewYork.com’s Adam Rubin (Twitter link).
While New York is still loaded with starters, Colon would presumably represent a swingman option that won’t require a lengthy commitment.
There’s plenty of reason to believe that the 42-year-old can continue functioning as a useful MLB pitcher. Colon signed a two-year, $20MM deal to join the Mets after putting up two stellar seasons with the A’s. He hasn’t quite matched the results he had in Oakland, but has contributed a remarkable 397 innings of 4.13 ERA pitching with 6.5 K/9 and a sterling 1.2 BB/9.
New York figures to roll out a rotation fronted by Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey, and Noah Syndergaard and also likely including highly-rated prospect Steven Matz. But with Niese now gone and Zack Wheeler still working back from Tommy John surgery, there’s some uncertainty beyond that point. As things stand, the team’s other options could include players like Rafael Montero, and Logan Verrett.