Right-hander Dillon Gee, who’s been a regular in the Mets’ rotation since 2011 and is being paid $5.3 million this season, has been designated for assignment and dropped from the roster.
It’s no secret that the Mets have been trying to trade Gee for a while now, particularly once they called up top prospect Noah Syndergaard to give them six starters for five rotation spots.
It’s still possible they’ll find a taker, since designating him for assignment gives them 10 days to potentially trade Gee, but clearly the level of interest in him has been minimal. It also didn’t help their efforts that Gee has allowed 29 runs in 40 innings this season and missed time with a groin injury.
When healthy Gee has been a decent middle-of-the-rotation starter, posting a 3.91 ERA in 640 innings prior to this season, and he’s still under 30.
We learned on Saturday afternoon that the Mets were going back to the five-man rotation, but it wasn’t clear who would be getting the boot. ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin reports that Dillon Gee will be moved from the rotation to the bullpen.
Gee has made six starts this season, posting a 4.46 ERA with a 21/9 K/BB ratio over 34 1/3 innings. He was supposed to start the year in the bullpen, but Zack Wheeler underwent Tommy John surgery in late March, ending his season before it began, opening up a rotation spot for Gee. Gee suffered a groin injury in early may, knocking him out of action for a month.
The Mets moved to a six-man rotation this week after Dillon Gee’s return from the disabled list, but they are apparently bailing on it before even getting through the first turn.
According to Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal, Mets manager Terry Collins said after last night’s loss to the Diamondbacks that the team will likely move back to a standard five-man rotation in the near future.
“I’m just tired of answering the questions, so we may go back to being traditional,” Collins said.
Questions from whom?
“Everybody,” he continued. “My wife. I’m tired of her wanting to know who’s pitching.”
Collins was trying to be funny there, but Diamond writes that the pitchers involved didn’t feel comfortable with the change in their routines and were worried that it would impact their performance. In fact, none of them publicly supported the idea.
Of course, part of the motivation behind the six-man rotation was to help limit the workloads of Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, and Noah Syndergaard. Assuming they are going back to a standard five-man, they’ll have to get creative to give them some rest, especially with another young arm, Steven Matz, likely to be promoted to the majors soon.
As for who will get the boot from the rotation, Diamond writes that Gee is most likely to be moved to the bullpen. And that makes sense considering that he was expected to begin the year in a relief role before Zack Wheeler required season-ending Tommy John surgery. Jon Niese has been shaky recently, but he strengthened his case by allowing three runs over six innings with eight strikeouts and one walk last night against the Diamondbacks. He’s also the lone left-hander in the rotation. At least for now.
On a related note, Andy Martino of the New York Daily News reported yesterday that the Mets are “really ramping up” their efforts to trade Gee and Niese.