John Lannan (AP)

Mets sign John Lannan to minors deal

The Mets have signed LHP John Lannan to a minor-league contract with an invite to major league spring training, the team announced.


Jan 21.: Lannan’s deal is for $1.5 million if he makes the major league team, and could earn another $2 million in innings pitched bonus. He can opt-out of his contract if he’s not on the MLB team by June 15 (Sherman).

In 14 starts with the Phillies in 2013, Lannan, 29, went 3-6 with a 5.33 ERA, allowing 86 hits and 27 walks with 38 strikeouts in 74 1/3 innings. He underwent knee surgery in late August and missed the remainder of the season.

Lannan – who is from Long Beach, Long Island – is 45-58 with a 4.12 ERA in 148 big league starts with the Nationals and Phillies in his seven-year career, having allowed only 83 home runs in 858 major league innings.

Michael Baron, Contributor

I like this signing a lot. The Mets reportedly had interest in signing Lannan last winter, but he went to Philadelphia. He pitches to a lot of contact but is a groundball pitcher who doesn’t allow a lot of home runs. There’s also value in his knowledge of the NL East, as he’s spent his entire career in the division. He will compete with Jenrry Mejia (and possibly Jacob deGrom and Rafael Montero) for the fifth starter spot this spring, but he could also serve as valuable rotation depth for the other guys in the rotation.



98 comments
Robby Johnson
Robby Johnson

Pretty excited about this pitching staff as a whole, even without Harvey.  I like our 1 thru 4 in the rotation, and the competition over the 5th spot is a great problem to have.  Maybe Lannan misses out, but he might still make a nice swingman in the bullpen or a solid insurance policy in AAA as a SP.  Not to mention Syndergaard's eventual arrival midseason, which means one or a few of the 5th spot competitors may shift to the bullpen as well.

It's certainly not a flashy rotation or bullpen, but that doesn't mean it can't be by the time the season is over.  There's guys in this mix with serious potential, and while that word --potential--makes some fans sick, it's reality.  It might be tough to get excited over this team's offense, but I'm pretty eager to see some of these pitchers come into their own.

Olerud42
Olerud42

Let's hope we don't see him on the major league club...

sylow59
sylow59

"I like this signing a lot."

so much so that I copy / pasted my prior comments instead of adding anything new.

Joe Paulson
Joe Paulson

This is one of those spare parts deals they had to make. They will make a few more, hopefully about as useful. 

They still need to get another bat to not piss me off.

Olerud42
Olerud42

Good pitcher for Washington. Terrible pitcher last season for Phils, but maybe he will bounce back. 

Jeff Kosnett
Jeff Kosnett

Good one. This guy pitched well for the Nats and they dropped him rather unfairly. If he's healthy he will help the Mets.

Sidd
Sidd

Excellent pick-up.

Brandon Lee
Brandon Lee

Always liked Lannan and wished for a while the Mets would get him. Good signing and could easily seeing him take that 5th spot if Mejia doesn't bounce back or gets injured again. 

slainte2
slainte2

Rotation has promise but is going to stress the bullpen ... Everyone of our starters has reason to limit innings. Strategy to avoid bullpen burnout is huge ... Old way of haphazard mixing and matching is not going to work.

I suggested before to start first third of season having our five starters know they are going five innings, no more. Have a "backers" rotation of three guys start clean sixth inning and go three innings (6th thru 8th), each pitching every third game... Even fifth starter level guys should be able to get thru lineup once, especially without worrying about pacing for full game. Close games out as usual, plus couple of depth guys.

My starters are Neise, Colon, Wheeler, Gee, Mejia.

My backers are Torres, Lannan, Familia.

My closers are Parnell, Black.

Add a couple specialists for depth.

Even after we bring up kids and trade Colon, etc in mid-season, the kid starters will be babied too.

It's different ... But not unprecedented (see LaRussa/Duncan pitching group experiment 1993, including Pitcher Ron Darling ... Would love mets blog to get his insight).

Imagination and innovation are good things, and Mets should get ahead of what is going to be a clearly stressful work load on bullpen this year.

Ron Davis
Ron Davis

Last year he pitched in a hitters park. he will do automatically better at Citi Field. i never said he is great but he can do ok here . He is what he is a 5th starter do not expect alot but ok hold your own and turn it over.

Ron Davis
Ron Davis

Its been a few years where we had two lefties in the rotation when Cappuano and Niese were together . It gives balance i believe especailly when they are not back to back

beers22
beers22

I know it's not a big signing, but I love this signing too.

ponzies86
ponzies86

Hopefully this motivates our poor man Pedro Martinez ( Mejia ) for that 5th spot 

mattfranco
mattfranco

Well done Sandy.  I like this signing.  Bittersweet to see The Factor in LA…  Bring in another local boy.  He'll put long island fannies in seats for his starts and may win a game or two.  I want Cap back too.


Macacawitz
Macacawitz

Does this mean they're out of the running for Tanaka?

mystere24
mystere24

Decent signing that is more valuable to our young pitching development than it is to wins so no one is rushed before they are ready. Next up is a veteran late inning reliever and then maybe we can get back to addressing 1B and SS.

dgdg
dgdg

No insult to my home gyland, but Lannan is a scrub.

ponzies86
ponzies86

Beatles music will be playing thru Citi Field

cmetsfan
cmetsfan

Don't recall if Omar is lefty, but think he is, and maybe there's some planning there.

eric88
eric88

Sandy

With all this pitching, where's the trade for a SS., where's any trade?

John Paul Cullinane
John Paul Cullinane

Proud Chaminade alum here...Sandy visiting the school yesterday then Lannan signing today...

Christopher Masiello
Christopher Masiello

I like it. He can eat up a few early starts while they are trying to keep the kids away from Super 2 status.

Stephen Fontana
Stephen Fontana

a good C+ sign for the Mets. It has been an off season of C+ to B+ Signings. 


Jon Forsyth
Jon Forsyth

i like the signing, solid spot-start pitcher if need be and good long man out of the bullpen

mike23
mike23

nice signing for depth, can't hurt adding another lefty, see what he has left

dannym28
dannym28

Watch out Aaron Laffey, but srsly i like the signing

yankeehater
yankeehater

I like the signing but I hope he doesn't inhibit mejia's progression.

Robby Johnson
Robby Johnson

@Olerud42 If he pitches better than the other guys competing for the spot in Spring Training, then I say why not.  It's not like the opening day rotation is set in stone for the rest of the season, but if he gives this team the best chance to win out of Spring Training, I'm all for it.

Hodges14
Hodges14

@Joe Paulson Based on the injury histories of Mejia, Niese and Gee and the fact that Wheeler was hurting at the end of last season and Colon is 40 years old I think it's pretty safe to say they are going to need at least 8 or 9 starters during the year in 2014.  This is a good signing for someone to have as insurance.

BTW... completely agree about the bat.. but make that 2 instead of 1.

Hodges14
Hodges14

@slainte2 Mejia only pitched 57 innings last year.  I have a hard time seeing them let him throw too much more than 100 innings this year and that would be a stretch given his history.  Getting Lannan as insurance is a good deal.

Joe Traina
Joe Traina

Niese and Johan too. But I totally hear ya.

Hodges14
Hodges14

@Macacawitz Nah... the Mets are going to surprise the world and have a press conference to announce Tanaka later in the week.  That's why they've been holding off on signing Drew.

Mike Dell Italia
Mike Dell Italia

@dgdg Pitching 180+ innings with a high 3 era is hardly a scrub, thats pretty much what he did in washington.  He's not great but adds decent depth and a lefty to our rotation.  Also he knows the division very well and will be pitching in more of a pitchers ball park.  

Jon Forsyth
Jon Forsyth

@eric88 trades are a two way street, who would you trade for a top (or eventually top) SS? the only trade chips we have are thor, montero and murph. No guarentee on thor or montero so you cant risk unloading on yet, and if we trade murph we have a hole at second. and despite what most people think, murph is above average 2B. yeah we could throw flores are first but there is no guarentee he wil hit, or even be able to handle 2B. its not like this team is 1 top tier player away from a WS. Free agent market is the way to go for now. but yes he is slacking at SS as a whole.

zoddie
zoddie

Hopefully Mejia wins the job outright and is healthy.

Gregor Kitzis
Gregor Kitzis

@yankeehater They're better in the long run if Mejia or Montero get the 5th spot and start accumulating major league experience. Neither one needs more AAA so giving the spot to Lannan just sets them back.

spider43
spider43

@yankeehater ....  No, I like the competition that the Lannan signing should provide. I don't want Mejia to be given the job, he should earn it. If he doesn't win the job, then he should be sent back to Triple A to get more seasoning, because the Mets don't need him wasting away on the bench as a long reliever, which would be counter-productive to turn him into a useful starting pitcher. He needs to be pitching every 5th day so he can be ready to contribute right away when the time is right.

gloveman
gloveman

@Robby Johnson I'd much rather see Mejia make it as the #5. If he's healthy he might be the best started we have next season. While I like Lannon and hope he does well, he doesn't have the stuff that Mejia has.

Robby Johnson
Robby Johnson

@Hodges14 Nothing wrong with the glass-half-empty approach - it's pretty justified with the injury histories you mentioned.  Guys will get injured, it's part of the game - but if healthy, this staff has the potential to win some ballgames.

supert
supert

@Steven Matregrano @Stephen Fontana They still have done nada to address the holes at 1B or SS when Stephen Drew could be signed and Jose Abreu would have looked good at 1B.  


Heck, add those two and subtract Davis & Duda and the team's payroll would still be under $110MM and they would be much improved.

Kyle Fox
Kyle Fox

@Steven Matregrano @Stephen Fontana Yeah I don't think it's about spreading the money around and getting a few good players instead of one 'great' player, it's the fact that we HAVE TO spread money at all!  This is a franchise based in New York, and although the Yankees are our direct competitors in the market, don't let it cloud anyones judgment that the Mets aren't a ridiculously profitable team.  Not to mention the money that each team just got from the new TV deal, as well as the money that we get from OUR TV deal, and the money we get from Citi each year for the naming rights (also 20MM).  Essentially, that takes care of the payroll right there.  


I don't care about spending smart on players, but to pretend that we're a midwestern, bad market team is ridiculous.  I abhor these owners.  Sell the team.