It appears that the Mets are already bailing on their six-man rotation

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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.

Colin Poche, Rays go to arbitration just $125,000 apart

Colin Poche torn UCL
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Reliever Colin Poche went to salary arbitration with the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday with the sides just $125,000 apart.

The gap between the $1.3 million the pitcher asked for and the $1,175,000 the team offered was the smallest among the 33 players who exchanged proposed arbitration figures last month. The case was heard by John Woods, Jeanne Vonhof and Walt De Treux, who will hold their decision until later this month.

A 29-year-old left-hander, Poche had Tommy John surgery on July 29, 2020, and returned to the major leagues last April 22 after six appearances at Triple-A Durham. Poche was 4-2 with a 3.99 ERA and seven saves in 65 relief appearances for the Rays. He struck out 64 and walked 22 in 58 2/3 innings.

Poche had a $707,800 salary last year.

Tampa Bay went to arbitration on Monday with reliever Ryan Thompson, whose decision also is being held until later this month. He asked for $1.2 million and the Rays argued for $1 million.

Rays right-hander Jason Adam and outfielder Harold Ramirez remain scheduled for hearings.

Players and teams have split four decisions thus far. All-Star pitcher Max Fried ($13.5 million) lost to Atlanta and reliever Diego Castillo ($2.95 million) was defeated by Seattle, while pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Marlins.

A decision also is pending for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

Eighteen additional players are eligible for arbitration and hearings are scheduled through Feb. 17. Among the eligible players is Seattle utilityman Dylan Moore, who has a pending three-year contract worth $8,875,000.