One of the reasons the Yankees went out and signed Pedro Feliciano this offseason is because he has been one of the most durable — or depending on your point of view, overworked — relievers in baseball over the past few seasons. In fact, he’s never been on the disabled list in eight major league seasons.
That all might change.
Multiple sources tell Bryan Hoch of MLB.com reports that Feliciano could begin the season on the disabled list due to tricep soreness in his throwing arm. The 34-year-old southpaw hasn’t pitched in a Grapefruit League game since March 9 and is simply running out of time to get ready for the start of the season.
If Feliciano requires a DL-stint, Romulo Sanchez and non-roster invitee Luis Ayala are considered the likely replacements. Mark Prior, who has a 1.35 ERA and 10/4 K/BB ratio over 6 2/3 innings this spring, is still a longshot to make the Opening Day roster.
Tim Tebow isn’t letting go of his major league dreams just yet. The former NFL quarterback is slated to appear with the Mets during spring training this year, extending what initially looked like an ill-fated career choice for at least one more season. Per the club’s official announcement on Friday, he’ll join a group of spring training invitees that includes top-30 prospects like Peter Alonso, P.J. Conlon, Patrick Mazeika and David Thompson.
Tebow, 30, hasn’t taken to professional baseball as gracefully as expected. He batted a cumulative .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs and a .656 OPS in 486 plate appearances for Single-A Columbia and High-A St. Lucie in 2017. While that wasn’t enough to compel the Mets to give the aging outfielder a big league tryout, there’s no denying that Tebow brought substantial benefit to their minor league affiliates — in the form of increased attendance figures and ticket sales, that is.
Even after the Mets were booted from the NL East race last September, they resisted the idea of promoting Tebow for a late-season attendance boost of their own. That’s not to say they’re planning on taking the same approach in 2018; Tebow will undoubtedly get his cup of coffee in the majors at some point, but for now, a Grapefruit League tryout is likely as close as he’ll ever get to playing with the team’s big league roster on an everyday basis.