“I love New York,” said Betances. “I grew up in Manhattan. Went to high school in Brooklyn. Played minor league ball in Staten Island. Made it to the big leagues in the Bronx. Now, I’m excited to go win a World Series with the Mets in Queens. Thanks to Fred and Jeff, Brodie, and all the other Mets staff who worked so hard to make possible this next step in my New York journey. Merry ChristMets! Let’s Go METS!”
Dellin Betances released this statement Tuesday afternoon. He is now across town and joins a Mets bullpen that could be formidable and perhaps tops in the National League.
This was the Christmas Eve gift for Mets fans. The Mets had been eyeing Betances, a top relief pitcher on the market. Reducing the contract of Yoenis Cespedes opened the door to a one-year contract, which includes player options for the 2021 and 2002 seasons, $10.5 million guaranteed.
Betances wanted to stay in New York and is with Carlos Beltran, his former teammate with the Yankees and now rookie manager of the Mets.
Betances, 31, does come with a risk He is coming off a shoulder injury and partial Achilles tendon tear that caused him to make one appearance for the Yankees last season.
But the upside, if healthy, Betances is the major and important upgrade to a Mets bullpen that was next to last in baseball in 2019. He throws strikes and makes the Mets pen that more formidable as a late inning reliever.
When effective, and that has been proved, Betances throws a fastball at 101 and keeps the ball on the ground. With the Yankees, Betances had five straight seasons of 100 or more strikeouts and was instrumental in the Yankees World Series championship year of 2009.
So after eight seasons with the Yankees, the 31-year old Right-Hander and Four-time All Star, a New York native, did not have to go far and will pitch across town.
This also is the ultimate prize for the Mets. GM Brodie Van Wagenen made it known that an objective this offseason was to revamp a bullpen.
Edwin Diaz, in his initial season as a Met, had seven blown saves and also failed to keep the Mets in ball games in late innings. Jeurys Familia also struggled. He was also re-acquired as a free agent last offseason,
With the addition of Betances, and With Diaz, the Mets bullpen has two of the premiere strikeout leaders per percentage in the bullpen.
However, Betances, needs to overcome his setbacks last year. Diaz and Familia have to rebound to make this a formidable and effective bullpen.
Along with Seth Lugo, Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo, and Brad Bach, Beltran does have good and reliable flexibility in the late innings.
Also in the mix is Justn Wilson. The left-Hander specialist was reliable and the most successful call out of the pen last season along with Lugo.
This offseason the Mets acquired Michael Wacha and Rick Porcello to low budget deals, which also added to their depth in the rotation and the bullpen.
Assume that Diaz and Familia rebound. Consider that Wilson picks up where he left off, 2.65 ERA in 39.0 innings, 44 strikeouts. With Betances, if effective, the Mets have that “Four-headed Dragon Monster coming out of the bullpen which is a welcome relief.
A great addition of Betances, also for the starting rotation of two-time Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom, Noah Syndergaard, Steven Matz, Marcus Stroman, and the addition of Porcello.
Betances has posted a 2.36 career ERA (100 earned runs/381.2 innings) with 36 saves and 621 strikeouts in 358 major league games with the Yankees
“Dellin is one of the elite relievers in the game with an incredible track record of pitching on the biggest stage and in playoff games,” Mets Executive Vice President and General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen said. “This is a tremendously exciting gift for Mets fans this holiday season in our championship pursuit.”
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