The Mets and right-hander John Maine avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.3 million contract on Friday. Maine, who turns 29 in May, could earn an additional $225,000 in performance bonuses based on number of starts.
Limited to just 15 starts last season due to shoulder problems, Maine
was 7-6 with a 4.43 ERA with a 1.29 WHIP in 81 1/3 innings. His second
straight season hampered by shoulder issues, the numbers tell the tale
of his decline:
2007: 8.48 K/9, 3.53 BB/9
2008: 7.84 K/9, 4.31 BB/9
2009: 6.09 K/9, 4.20 BB/9
As of now, the Mets rotation consists of Johan Santana, Mike Pelfrey,
Oliver Perez, Jon Niese (if healthy) and Maine. Of course, they won’t
begin the season that way, as the team has been connected to Joel
Pineiro, Jon Garland and Doug Davis in free agency and Bronson Arroyo
among potential trade targets.
The Yankees placed Nestor Cortes on the 15-day injured list with a left rotator cuff strain that will sideline the left-hander for at least two starts.
The move is retroactive to Monday and Cortes will be shut down for at least 15 days.
After Tuesday’s game, Cortes said the shoulder has been bothering him between starts and more so after he pitched five innings May 30 in Seattle.
“I took two days off and when I got to LA and threw that first day, I didn’t feel right,” Cortes said Tuesday. “But it was first day coming back from pitching so I knew it was going to be nagging a little bit. So I waited a little bit.
“That second day in LA was when I said something because it felt like I had pitched yesterday. So I wasn’t recovering in time.”
Cortes is 5-2 with a 5.16 ERA in 11 starts and has particularly struggled later in outings. Opponents are hitting .447 when facing him for the third time in a game.
Last year, Cortes was an All-Star and went 12-4 with a 2.44 ERA in 28 starts.
Randy Vásquez was recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre to take Cortes’ spot in the rotation and will make his second career start in Thursday’s doubleheader. Vásquez made his major league debut May 26 against San Diego when the Yankees needed a starter because Domingo Germán was serving a 10-game suspension for using sticky substances.