Jenrry Mejia’s stunning lifetime suspension for failing a third PED test is still fresh on the minds of most Mets fans, and Ken Davidoff of the New York Post runs down some of the intricacies of the Joint Drug Agreement’s ban. As Davidoff notes, Mejia remains property of the Mets and will gain Major League service time even though he is suspended. As such, the Mets will have to officially non-tender Mejia next offseason. Mejia is banned for at least two years, but he can apply for reinstatement after one year. Reinstatement seems unlikely, and as Davidoff notes, both the Korea Baseball Organization and Nippon Professional Baseball honor MLB disciplinary measures, so Mejia isn’t likely to latch on overseas, either. He could play independent ball if the Mets grant him permission, and as Davidoff notes, the Mets may feel no reason to prevent him from doing so.
Here’s the latest on the Mets…
- Jon Heyman tweets that the Mets still “have [their] eyes open” for bullpen help in the wake of Mejia’s suspension. Presently, Addison Reed, Hansel Robles and Erik Goeddel are poised to serve as right-handed setup options for closer Jeurys Familia, while Antonio Bastardo, Jerry Blevins and Sean Gilmartin are all in the mix as options from the left side.
- Lefty Josh Edgin, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery, is aiming for a May 1 return, tweets MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo. While that return will, of course, be largely dependent on how his rehab progresses this spring and throughout the month of April, Edgin would give the Mets a quality fourth option as a left-hander. Edgin logged a 1.32 ERA in 27 1/3 innings for the Mets in 2014 and looked poised to be a key ’pen member going forward prior to his injury.
- The re-signing of Yoenis Cespedes essentially made Alejandro De Aza a superfluous fifth outfielder for the Mets, but the team has no plans to attempt to trade him right now, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. Clearly, a trade of De Aza would represent a rare occurrence, as a player that signs as a free agent must give his consent to being traded before June 15. However, De Aza would “almost certainly” consent to a deal now that he’s in line for a dramatically diminished role to the one he thought he was signing up for when he took the Mets’ one-year, $5.75MM offer earlier this winter. The Mets want to make sure that each of Michael Conforto, Curtis Granderson and Cespedes make it through Spring Training without injury before dealing De Aza, though, Rosenthal notes. Additionally, he points out that the presence of David Murphy, Will Venable and Matt Joyce on the free-agent market also makes a trade unlikely, as teams have similar alternatives on the open market. I’d further add that injuries are likely to pop up around the rest of the league and could leave a team that doesn’t stand out as a current fit as a suitor down the line.