Jenrry Mejia pitches in the rain

Valverde will be closer tonight, Mejia gets rest

May 23, 4:50 pm: Jose Valverde will be the team’s closer Friday, Terry Collins said, since Jenrry Mejia pitched back-to-back nights Wednesday and Thursday for the first time this season.


11:26 am: Mejia earned his second save of the season Thursday, while pitching on back to back days for the first time this year.

“It’s big for me, it’s huge for him,” Terry Collins said after the game. “The one thing he’s worried about is his arm.”

Collins said he does not intend to use Mejia on Friday.

“That this guy is healthy, that he knows he can go back to back nights, it can change a lot of things the way we shape our bullpen,” he explained.

Mejia has repeatedly expressed concern about pitching in relief, because he’s missed so much time during his career due to arm injuries. He’s already had Tommy John surgery, and missed time again last season after having another surgery on his elbow.

He is 1-0 with two saves in five relief appearances this season, during which he’s allowed no runs, walked nobody and struck out six.

Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer

The team will have all eyes on Mejia when he gets to the ballpark on Friday. If he feels good, strong and still confident, it’s going to be a turning point in the direction of their bullpen. His stuff is so good in relief. He’s really good as a starting pitcher, don’t get me wrong. But, in short stints, as long as he has his command, he often looks unhittable. He’s ultra-competitive, so I bet he comes to love the power and ego that comes with being a dominant closer. Plus, he already has the impromptu, celebratory dance moves to put exclamation points on his outings.




37 comments
Eamon Carty
Eamon Carty

I think mejia is liking the role because he can celebrate. Mejia wants the competion that is what he wants, nothing better than game in the line give it to the bull dog JM Let him roll and tell ververfail to roll in to a double A team

Joe Paulson
Joe Paulson

I'm okay with this.  He can "close" in his mind while the game is called because of rain. 

Brian Webster
Brian Webster

Hopefully this is just like the Farnsworth situation where he was the closer vs the Yanks and then a couple days after getting the save he was DFAd

Glenn Blasius
Glenn Blasius

Maybe we can redefine 'save' as protecting a lead of at least 10 runs.   This way, Terry won't go to his 'closer' unless he can earn the S.

Are these guys insane? A week ago Familia was "close" to being named closer. The other day he came into the 5th inning. Why isn't Familia the setup guy with Mejia the closer? If that's the case then your SETUP guy would assume the closer's role when he's unable to close. How on earth is Valverde the closer when a few days ago the story was that he was next inline to be cut? 

C.K. Dexter Haven
C.K. Dexter Haven

Even though Jennry got the save last night it was a pretty sticky save.  And now he is a no-go for tonight.  Hmmm, they cut Farnsworth for the same thing, no?  We don't need to worry about Jennry.....right?

cleonsvan
cleonsvan

Yes, because pitching two innings in two nights is exhausting. We're becoming a society of wusses.

Gimme a break!

theglider
theglider

Valverde? There has to be a better option, right?

1harris1
1harris1

If he can adjust physically, the closer role is the perfect role for him. He has both the stuff and makeup, and you can be a "maximum effort" guy all you want when you're pitching one inning at a time.

Darrell Smith
Darrell Smith

So far everything is going right . The real test however will be when he comes in with 2 on base and 1 out and were leading by one. He's got to keep his cool , something he has not done as a starter.

Bryan Torres
Bryan Torres

as long as he pitches, I'm fine. I love watching him pitch. But don't get me wrong. If he pitches, he better be a starter or a closer. 

Albert E Lewis
Albert E Lewis

It seems he would be great as a closer but on this team how many chances for a save can he expect?

theglider
theglider

My concern is his use. This team really doesn't have another reliever, at least not one we can bank on. If we need someone else I'm not sure who. Would it be Dice-K or Familia. As long as it's not Valverde.

JC
JC

I don't know what changed, but the past week or two Matt has been alot more free with saying what needs to be said.  Nothing really related to this post in particular but its the first time in a while he's been saying more of what the fans feel and less of what the Mets PR department wants you to think, and it very refreshing.

Jay Young
Jay Young

Best hair in baseball! To only see it every fifth day is a crime against humanity!

Not4Nutten
Not4Nutten

Good for Jennry, hope his arm and body holds up! With this team he's guaranteed a lot of work!!!!!

drmetfan
drmetfan

Mejia has looked great, there is no question about it. He can certainly thrive in this roll. However, he needs to believe in the roll, he needs to believe in himself. I know he has concerns about his arm but it is mostly in his head. He is healthy and if he continues to be as economical as he has been during his relief outings there is no question he can remain healthy.  

Mike Garrison
Mike Garrison

"it's big for me, it's huge for him" - my immaturity kicked in here.

Kenneth Meltsner
Kenneth Meltsner

Just because I'm a glass-half-empty kinda guy, does this mean I have to live in mortal fear of Valverde closing tonight?

nykjw2
nykjw2

Too bad there won't be too many save opportunities on this club

Eamon Carty
Eamon Carty

@joe wenzel right on point... So damn right.... Right right right. Why do they need to know that haha

longsufferingMetsfan
longsufferingMetsfan

TC is "not worried about defense" anyway- so I guess we can rest easy.

*sarcastic*

hankypanky
hankypanky

Hilarious. I can imagine the lynch mob mentality here if Mejia pitched three nights in a row. Accusations of destroying the kid's career would come from all directions.

greekgod
greekgod

@cleonsvan and Collins is the biggest wuss ever! He wants to be a players coach and most players coaches get fired by the 3rd or 4th year. Collins knows he's not long for the team....he can't coach young players and its very noticeable to all.

metsjetsdu
metsjetsdu

@Darrell Smith Not saying it doesn't happen at all but in today's game I would say closers are starting off the inning 95% of the time, so I'm not sure that's something they are too worried about. 

jenkins
jenkins

@Darrell Smith I think he'll love the pressure.  This puts him in the spotlight he enjoys.

Mr. SERCH
Mr. SERCH

@theglider I think, barring a trade, we're going to FINALLY see a much more potent, reliable bullpen, come mid June and going forward for a while, starring Mejia as the closer, DiceK, Familia, Vic Black, Zach Thornton, Scott Rice, and either Degromm or Montero (too early to call, but at this point already, it seems Montero would actually be the logical choice)....would like to have another effective lefty in there (NO, not you Josh Edgin!), but if that's our bullpen, i have much, MUCH more confidence in those 7 than anything we've had in the last 2 years. That bullpen can actually be downright dominant if it all pans out with the guys hitting their potential. 

cleonsvan
cleonsvan

@JC  I think Matt is just saying what has become a total realization to the fan base: Collins is a total moron.

Michael Frias
Michael Frias

@JC  Maybe Matt changed nothing, and people just interpret his optimistic view as being a "shill" for the Wilpons?