Just days shy of his 47th birthday, Bartolo Colon isn’t quite ready to step away from the game. The big righty spoke to ESPN’s Marly Rivera this week, telling her that he’s holding out hope for one final run in the Majors — ideally with the Mets. “Big Sexy” praised the organization from top to bottom, lauding everyone from the front office to the clubhouse staff while delivering some heartfelt memories of the Amazins’ fanbase:
Mets fans are the best. In the beginning, when they laughed at me every time my helmet fell off, at first I felt uncomfortable. But when I saw how much the fans enjoyed it, I asked for a bigger batting helmet so that it would fall more because it was so much fun for them!
That said, Colon made clear that he’s willing to pitch with any team, in any role, so long as it means one more run in the Majors. The well-traveled righty has already suited up for 11 clubs to this point in his big league career: the Indians, Expos, White Sox, Angels, Red Sox, Yankees, Athletics, Mets, Braves, Twins and Rangers.
Colon didn’t pitch in the big leagues last season and last appeared with the 2018 Rangers, tallying 28 games (24 starts). However, he hasn’t had an above-average campaign on the mound since his age-43 season with the Mets back in 2016 (191 2/3 innings, 3.49 ERA, All-Star appearance). Over his past two seasons in the big leagues, Colon has worked to an ERA just north of 6.00 while soaking up 289 1/3 frames for Atlanta, Minnesota and Texas. To his credit, Colon had plenty of sharp outings with both the Twins and Rangers — they were just mixed in with numerous clunkers that outweighed much of the good he did when at his best.
Seeing Colon back in the big leagues is a long shot at this point, but teams will need more depth than ever as rosters expand to accommodate a shortened ramp-up period to the 2020 season. And Colon was already set to play in the Mexican League prior to the pandemic shutting down pro sports around the globe, so perhaps he’d explore alternatives if a deal with a big league organization can’t come together.