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Lyon pitched to great success last season with the Toronto Blue Jays and Houston Astros.
Brandon Lyon, the only reliever to receive a major league deal, was signed for a one-year, $750,000 contract. He can earn $1.65 million in performance bonuses.
The 33-year-old has had an up-and-down career, but finally seems to be pulling it all together.
Last season, he went 4–2 with a 3.10 ERA and 63 strikeouts in 61.0 innings. He only allowed five home runs all season as part of both the Toronto Blue Jays and the Houston Astros.
Lyon boasted a .253 BAA against right-handed hitters, and a .216 BAA against left-handed hitters, so he clearly holds his own against both sides of the plate. Lyon also had experience last season against every NL East team, including the Mets, and only allowed one earned run in those 7.2 innings to the lowly Miami Marlins.
Throughout his 11-year major league career, Lyon has always been durable and reliable.
He has a career 4.12 ERA and has only allowed 207 walks in 647.0 total innings.
Lyon had a career-high 26 saves in 2008 and 20 saves as recently as 2010. Nevertheless, it seems that Francisco has a firm grasp on the closer role. But if he struggles early, there will likely be plenty of pundits clamoring for Lyon to take over as the closer.
Regardless, Lyon should still fill in as a clutch, late-inning reliever for the Mets this season. He posted a .194 BAA in 2012 with runners in scoring position.
As the only reliever to garner a major-league contract, expectations are highest on Lyon. But Lyon is consistent and durable, which the Mets undoubtedly need in their bullpen.
As a result, he is the top bullpen signing by the Mets this offseason.
Chance for Success: High/Very High
Final Analysis: Lyon has three good pitches in his fastball, slider, and curveball. He gets ahead early in the count and mixes off-speed pitches well. Lyon may command a major league contract, but he is still a low-risk investment as a lot of the money he could earn depends on his success. There is no reason to believe Lyon will not continue his recent form this season for a completely revamped Mets bullpen.