Jenrry Mejia pitched a scoreless ninth inning on Saturday for his first big-league save.
This past Friday, Terry Collins said, ideally speaking, Mejia would be his team’s closer, but he’s not comfortable putting him in that role full time until Mejia is ready to pitch back-to-back days in the bullpen.
Mejia has been a primarily a starting pitcher in the minor-leagues, despite a short stint pitching in relief for the Mets in 2010, which was the last time he pitched in the bullpen on consecutive days. He has been vocal about preferring to pitch in the rotation, because he believes it is better for his arm. He has had multiple injuries and had Tommy John surgery in 2011.
“I don’t know yet,” Mejia said late Saturday about the possibility of pitching back-to-back days (ESPN, May 17). “Let’s see how I feel tomorrow, because I just have three days in the bullpen, and I have like three years that I didn’t pitch like that. Three years ago I was injured, hurt a lot. I don’t know right now.”
The Mets moved Mejia in to the big-league last Wednesday, at which time they promoted RHP prospect Rafael Montero to take his spot in the rotation. Montero responded by throwing six innings and letting up three runs in his debut against the Yankees.