The Mets got their man, signing closer Francisco Rodriguez to a 3-year, $37 million deal earlier today, adding some much needed help to their bullpen. I, one of the biggest anti-Mets people out there, have to say that this is a great signing and here's why.
When free agency started, rumors were that K-Rod was seeking a 5-year deal for about $75 million, an average of $15-million-per. The Mets got him for $12.3 million a year, which is less, and if his arm falls off like people are expecting, New York is only on the hook for a few seasons.
The reason this signing is so big, though, is because the Mets had to go out and get a big-name, premier closer to please their fans, if nothing else. After two years of last-day-of-the-season collapses, and suffering through last year's horrific bullpen, this signing suggests that Omar Minaya and company are listening to the fans who are paying for their mega-billion-dollar stadium through tax money. And it suggests that the Metropolitans addressed their most glaring weakness in the best way possible. They went and got the best available closer, not Brian Fuentes, not Trevor Hoffman.
Since when was Brian Fuentes a lights-out closer anyway? I know he's had good stuff, but every time I heard his name the last two years it seemed like it was in discussions of trading him or moving him to the setup role. In fact, he was displaced from his closing role for Manny Corpas.
Had the Mets passed on Rodriguez and lost out on Fuentes, they would be in the same situation they were last year. The only concern they should have now is about that declining velocity. It does say something when no other teams are interested in a guy who just set the single season record for saves.
On a side note, with K-Rod in New York, at least we won't have to read a thousand articles and hear the radio heads talking about Joba Chamberlain's fist pumps anymore and if that is "disrespectful to the game," since Rodriguez basically puts on a cabaret show on the mound after each strikeout.