Much was made of New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman's comments regarding the Mets use of lefty reliever, Pedro Feliciano last season. Feliciano pitched nine seasons for the Mets from 2002-2010. This offseason, the Yankees signed Feliciano to a two-year, $8 million contract.
The Yankees recently had to put Feliciano on the 15-day DL due to a strained rotator cuff, an injury which Cashman blamed on the Mets.
"He was abused,” Cashman told Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com. “Listen, I don’t know, the concern is based on the MRI. The use pattern was abusive, but the MRI itself shows what he’s got. And that leads us to believe all that is resolvable and that it’s not a major issue, just a timing issue.”
Last season, Feliciano made a league-high 92 appearances for the Mets. Over the past three seasons, Feliciano has made 266 relief appearances, the most in the majors.
When Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen was asked about Cashman's comments, he was quick to fire back, and quite honestly, embarrassed Cashman.
"He volunteered for the baseball every day,” Warthen told Adam Rubin or ESPNNewYork.com. “He was asked whether he was able to pitch. He said ‘Yes’ every day. Every day. And wanted to pitch more than we even pitched him. So I feel badly that someone feels that way. But that was part of the reason that we decided not to re-sign him, because we knew we had used him 270-some times in the last three years.”
Now, I don't believe Warthen when he says the number of innings he pitched was the reason the Mets didn't resign Feliciano. In my opinion, it came down to money. The Mets didn't have a lot to spend and $8 million is a lot of money when you're as cash-strapped as the Mets.
But Warthen's comments certainly point out the idiocy of Brian Cashman's statements. He knew the stats, they were not secret. Yet he felt the two-year contract was the right move.
Not to mention Cashman's track record of over used relief pitchers. But that's beside the point.
Today, Feliciano threw his two cents into the conversation. He said Warthen's comments hurt his feelings. He said that he chose to pitch for the Yankees because they offered him a two-year deal with a club option for a third year, which goes back to my opinion regarding why the Mets didn't resign him.
But Feliciano also added that he'll look to exact a measure of revenge from the Mets during the first Subway Series of the season (May 20-22 at Yankee Stadium).
"I will show [Warthen] in the Subway Series when I strike out Ike Davis. When I jump up and down on the mound, I'll be like 'That's for you!'"
Well, Feliciano would have to get off the DL by then for that to happen.
Regardless, the Mets let Feliciano pitch when he said he was able to pitch. I don't recall anyone poking Feliciano with a stick to get him out of the bullpen. To his credit, Feliciano defended how the Mets used him in his statements, so obviously Feliciano doesn't agree with Cashman.
We'll see what happens when the Mets and the Yankees meet next month.