TORONTO, CANADA - Jon Rauch #60 of the Toronto Blue Jays delivers a pitch during MLB game action the Baltimore Orioles. (Photo by Brad White/Getty Images)
The New York Mets reached an agreement with reliever Jon Rauch.
The Mets aren't exactly walking around the Winter Meetings wearing a barrel, but they certainly aren't major free-agent players. That doesn't mean that they can't improve the team at all, though. They came in with the goal of looking for bullpen help, and they've found some in Jon Rauch. From Jim Duquette:
Deal for Rauch and Mets is pending a physical.
Well, that's certainly a big acquisition, am I right? Because he's tall? Get it?
Anywho, Rauch pitched 52 innings for the Blue Jays last season, putting up a 4.85 with a career-low strikeout rate. Over his career, though, he's been a perfectly acceptable bullpen arm, and he even has experience closing games if the Mets decide that they want someone with a little more experience than Bobby Parnell or Manny Acosta. Rauch saved 11 games for the Blue Jays last season, filling in for Frank Francisco in April, and taking over the closer's role again in September.
The Mets started last season with Francisco Rodriguez as their closer, but he was traded away in July. Middle reliever and organizational metaphor Jason Isringhausen picked up a few saves as well, but he's likely to leave via free agency.
edit: The deal is for $3.5 million plus performance bonuses, according to Joel Sherman.