Mets sign Daisuke Matsuzaka, to start Friday

Daisuke Matsuzaka 1 polaroidThe Mets announced they have signed RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka, and he has been named tomorrow night’s starter against the Tigers.

Matsuzaka will wear number 16.

To make room on the active roster for Matsuzaka, the Mets option RHP Greg Burke to Triple-A Las Vegas.

Update – 12:58 p.m.: Matsuzaka has signed a Major League contract with the Mets. (Carig, Newsday)

11:54 AM: The Mets have agreed to sign Daisuke Matsuzaka, and he is expected to join the Mets on Friday. (Heyman, CBS Sports).

Matsuzaka was released by the Cleveland Indians earlier this week, where he posted a 5-8 record, with a 3.92 ERA and 1.277 WHIP for their Triple-A affiliate.

Matsuzaka hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012, where he made only 11 starts for Boston, posting a 8.28 ERA and 1.708 WHIP. In 2011, he only made seven starts, before losing the season to Tommy John surgery.

The 32-year-old is “expected to go right to the big leagues,” Heyman said. Matsuzaka last appeared in a game on Monday, August 19, allowing five earned runs, on eight hits and three walks, in four innings against the Triple-A Norfolk Tides.

The Mets are looking to fill roster holes left by Jeremy Hefner likely needing Tommy John surgery and Jenrry Mejia getting surgery to remove bone spurs in his elbow.

The team showed interest in bringing Matsuzaka to Spring Training earlier this year.

Michael Baron, Contributor

11:54 AM: With the Mets losing Hefner and Mejia to surgery, the innings limits on minor league guys like Jacob deGrom and Rafael Montero, as well as the soft inning limits on Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler, the Mets have a need for innings from their rotation. Matsuzaka is a body who can, at least, help to fill some of the gaps.

It’s clearly questionable what he has left in the tank at this point. He hasn’t pitched a full season since 2008, had Tommy John Surgery in 2011, was awful for Boston in 2012, and couldn’t get to the big leagues with Cleveland in 2013. He’s always been a guy who throws a ton of pitches, works deep counts and doesn’t get deep into games as a result. Having said that, there’s no harm in taking a look and seeing if he can provide some value over the final month or so of the season.

Daisuke Matsuzaka worked out at Citi Field today. Starts tomorrow vs. the Tigers. #Mets

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