The Mets have until Thursday’s non-tender deadline to offer a contract to John Maine, or else he will become a free agent.
Maine earned $3.3 million in a one-year contract he signed last January, and as Adam Rubin of ESPN New York points out, arbitration-eligible players cannot earn less than 80 percent of the prior year’s salary, meaning the minimum he is allowed to earn is approximately $2.5 million if the Mets offer him a contract for next season.
Rubin says Maine is recovering well from July surgery to repair the capsule in his throwing shoulder.
I think the Mets could at least get a more stable arm for the same price as Maine. But, from a cost perspective, they could combine the money saved from non-tendering him and whatever available funds they have already allocated for a starting pitcher and probably acquire someone better. No matter what, I don’t see how or why the Mets would guarantee $2.5 million to someone who has spent two years battling shoulder problems and is essentially coming off two operations to repair that shoulder.
Maine is 41-36 with a 4.35 ERA in his seven year career, allowing 519 hits and 285 walks in 585 2/3 career innings. Since the start of the 2009 season, Main is 8-9 with a 4.98 ERA in 24 starts, allowing 114 hits and 63 walks in 121 innings over that span.