Now that Derek Lowe has taken the bucks to sign with the Braves, the Mets are expected to make an even bigger full court press for Oliver Perez.
Perez, a lefthander with stunning stuff that confounds even the best hitters, is in Omar Minaya's scope and locked in as Priority Numero Uno.
The numbers will surely have to include a fourth year, and the overall tag will be in the $44-$48M range.
While this is a move Mets fans insist has to happen for the team to contend in 2009, the question begs: is it enough?
With Ollie in the fold the Mets rotation will look like this:
Johan Santana, LHP, 16-7, 2.53, 206 K, 1.15 WHIPIt's not a "bad" rotation, but is it truly a good one?
John Maine, RHP, 10-8, 4.18 ERA, 122 K, 1.35 WHIP
Oliver Perez, LHP, 10-7, 4.22 ERA, 180 K, 1.40 WHIP
Mike Pelfrey, RHP, 13-11, 3.72, 110 K, 1.36 WHIP
Tim Redding, RHP, 10-11, 4.95 ERA, 120 K, 1.43 WHIP
It features a dominant Ace at the head of the ship and tons of potential in the 2-4 slots, but it also features a young pitcher coming off injury in the #2 slot, a very young pitcher in the #4 slot who found himself after struggling mightily, and a #5 starter with a career ERA+ of 89.
Then again, it also looks a heck of a lot like last year's rotation with a more dependable #5 starter.
With the improvements to the bullpen, and a healthy year from all five starters, those 10, 13 and 16 win seasons could improve by 2 to 4 games per pitcher.
And the Mets would have themselves one heck of a starting rotation.