New York Mets closer Frank Francsico

Frank Francisco will continue to be the New York Mets closer in 2013, according to manager Terry Collins (Photo credit: Paul Hadsall)

In a New York Post “exclusive,” Kevin Kernan reports that Terry Collins has proclaimed that Frank Francisco is the Mets’ closer.

“We saw last year when he is right, he is good,’’ Collins said. “I think he looks good. He is in the right frame of mind.’’

It’s a slow news day for baseball writers, unless they want to play armchair lawyer with the unraveling Biogenesis clinic story, but the only reason this even looks like a story is thanks to Sandy Alderson.

The Mets GM Monday repeated comments that questioned Francisco’s role on the team.

“I think a lot will depend on what we see over the course of February and into March,” Alderson said. “I think that’s something that will be determined in the course of spring training. Health is an issue. Performance is an issue.”

I’m no more enthused about Francisco than Alderson is, but I didn’t hand him a two-year, $12 million contract.

More to the point, who else is on the Mets roster that you’d rather see closing games?

Bobby Parnell, with his 14 career saves in five seasons, most of which did not come in anything resembling pressure situations?

Brandon Lyon has experience closing with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Houston Astros – but he’s not on the roster yet. (Edit: Yes he is, almost. The news of the signing broke this morning after I hit the “publish” button. But Lyon still has to pass a physical before the deal is official.)

If the Mets wanted to hand Parnell the closer’s job to see what he could do with it, that’s one thing. The 2013 Mets are probably a 70 win team, so they should experiment. But if that’s the case, why worry about what Francisco does in February and March?

And if Alderson’s comments over the past week were intended to improve his negotiating position with Lyon, his manager just sabotaged that effort. (Edit: Or not, since the Lyon deal has already been agreed to. Still, it would be nice to see Collins and Alderson on the same page.)

Nothing like a little silliness from the Mets’ brass to start the spring… at least we’re not worrying about when Ruben Tejada is going to get to camp this year.

About these ads

About Paul Hadsall

I'm the former editor of a weekly community newspaper in New Jersey. I've been a New York Mets fan for most of my life and I've been blogging about them, minor league baseball, baseball cards and autograph collecting since 2007. Contact me at paul@randombaseballstuff.com

4 responses

  1. In the abstract, I’m OK with not declaring ANYBODY on this roster to be ANYTHING, with the exception of David Wright… I think it’s safe to say that every job but his is open to some level of competition.

    That being said, Collins is dealing with different personalities, and I don’t think Francisco responds well to NOT being the closer… So there’s no reason to say otherwise at this point.

    Like

    • Paul says:

      I don’t see how anyone can “win” the closer’s job in Port St. Lucie. You can’t duplicate the pressure of closing out a game in spring training. The ninth inning of Grapefruit League games is the province of Single-A players with number ninety-something on their back, forcing closers to work the third or fourth inning if they want to face major leaguers.

      Aside from the outfield, backup catcher, utility infielder and setup spots in the bullpen, I don’t see any competition in the Mets camp this spring.

      Like

  2. MJ says:

    I agree with Shlabotnik. Frankie’s the sensitive type (players who suck often are). Even if Lyon passes his physical, he’s far past his prime. Chances are he’s insurance (you know Frankie will lose the gig at some point). Parnell doesn’t inspire me with confidence (nor do Frankie or Lyon). And it doesn’t much matter anyway. Any closers on the farm? Nnnnnope.

    I also see they’re after Bourn. Don’t see that as particularly helpful, but he won’t cost them a prospect like Wheeler, as Upton would have. I suspect that’s a move to quiet the fans. It doesn’t really turn the Mets into a better team. At least I don’t think so. Though it’s ceretainly true the Mets are short on speed, I don’t know if a 30 year old Bourn adds much.

    Like

    • Paul says:

      Depending on the costs (percentage of payroll, years & what happens with the draft pick), I think it makes sense to consider Bourn. Signing him would send a message to Mets fans and players that the team is trying to improve now as well as somewhere down the road.

      I don’t love our closing options, but I don’t think they’re going to see enough save opportunities to stress about it.

      Like