Righthander Jon Garland has been a durable and reliable starting pitcher for quite some time, and yet, most teams remain uninterested in his services. I wonder, why wouldn't a team like the Mets—a team with only one legitimate starter—be looking to add some stability to their shaky rotation?
Of course if I'm asking the question, I probably don't have the answer.
Specifically, Garland has made 32 or more starts in eight straight seasons. Even better, he had double-digit wins in every one of those eight seasons.
That's nearly unheard of for starters of the past decade.
Garland is a veteran with excellent command, and an underrated arsenal of pitches. He's thought of as a "control pitcher," but he can actually run his four-seam fastball into the 93 MPH range. He's consistently 90 to 92, but is adept at turning up the dial when necessary.
He gets plus movement on his two-seam fastball, that in addition to a change-up and well above average 12-to-6 curveball.
Simply put, Jon Garland is a very solid major league pitcher.
And yet, there are the Mets, with Johan Santana and four question marks: Mike Pelfrey, John Maine, Oliver Perez, and Jon Niese. I'm not the only Mets fan who has an immediate gag reaction when he looks at that rotation on paper...am I?
Nonetheless, Garland's name never seems to come up. First it was Joel Pineiro, now it seems to be Bronson Arroyo, neither of whom would be superior to Garland at Citi Field. I'd take Arroyo in a package deal with Brandon Phillips; otherwise I wouldn't be too interested.
In the end it looks like Garland is headed to the Texas Rangers. Hmm, this guy who is making the decisions for Texas—ummm, I think his name is Nolan Ryan—he apparently knows a little bit about pitching.
"The Ryan Express" is turning around that franchise one day and decision at a time.
So if he knows Garland is a quality free agent worth signing to a low-risk short-term deal, then the question is, why don't the Mets?
Well, that's a question I happen to know the answer to...
The Mets' front office doesn't know much of anything.
John Frascella is the author of "Theo-logy: How a Boy Wonder Led the Red Sox to the Promised Land," the first and only book centered on Boston's popular GM Theo Epstein. Follow John on Twitter @RedSoxAuthor.
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