In a flurry of moves Tuesday evening, the New York Mets overhauled their bullpen. The Mets signed free agent relievers Frank Francisco and Jon Rauch and traded Angel Pagan to the San Francisco Giants for Andres Torres and Ramon Ramirez. According to MLB.com, the Mets are planning on letting Francisco, Rauch and Ramirez “compete” for the closer’s role in 2012.
New York made two of their additions via the free agent market. The Mets agreed to a one-year deal with Rauch which will pay the giant reliever $3.5 million in 2012, while Francisco came to a two-year, $12 million agreement with New York.
The Mets acquired their third late-inning reliever through a trade with the Giants. San Francisco was known to be actively shopping several players on their roster including Torres and Ramirez. Torres was likely to be non-tendered, and the Giants were looking to shed salary from their bullpen which made Ramirez available.
In exchange for Torres and Ramirez, the Mets gave up Angel Pagan. The 30-year-old posted a line of .262/.322/.372 with 35 extra base hits and 32 stolen bases for the Mets over his 123 games played. The center fielder has managed a career OPS of .750.
While it’s not clear who will close games for the Mets in 2012, based on the salaries the favorite would be Francisco. The right-hander compiled 17 saves for the Blue Jays last season and was the Rangers closer in 2009 when he held an ERA and WHIP of 3.83 and 1.115.
Rauch and Ramirez also have experience closing games. Rauch has the most career saves of the trio (58) and has saved 32 games over the past two seasons for the Twins and Blue Jays. Last season Ramirez acted as a member of San Francisco’s closer-by-committee following Brian Wilson’s injury.
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