According to the New York Post, the Mets might put an innings limit on Jon Niese this season, and could shut him down before the end of the year.
Jerry Manuel told the Post he is not a proponent of limiting innings for a pitcher, but will listen to what pitching coach Dan Warthen has to say regarding the issue, as Warthen said before last night’s game “You don’t want to burn [Niese's] arm out.”.
I think it’s important to preserve the health of Niese’s arm, but I think this speaks to the problem with limiting pitch counts, and I think teams need to take pitchers out when they’re tired, and not necessarily when they reach a pitch count. That said, if Niese feels good, I believe he should go out there until he is physically incapable of doing so, if that even happens this season.
To me, it’s all about how Niese reaches 100 pitches in a game or how he might reach 175 innings or how ever many he throws this year. If he reaches both by grinding and laboring through games, then yeah it might be a good idea to take him out, or shut him down. But if he continues to cruise like he has for much of this season, I say let her rip.
Niese, who is scheduled to pitch tonight in Pittsburgh, has gone 7-5 with a 3.38 ERA in 133 innings pitched this year, averaging just over six innings per start, and missed time towards the end of May after tweaking his surgically repaired hamstring.