Saturday, December 10, 2022

Mets Add Depth To Bullpen By Adding Robertson


David Robertson with Philadelphia last season. @MLB.

One of the biggest questions the Mets had to address this offseason was bolstering their bullpen, really finding reliable options for the innings before closer Edwin Diaz enters to the sound of trumpets in the ninth inning.

On Friday night, they completed the signing of David Robertson, who began his career with the Yankees and had a stellar 2022 season for the Chicago Cubs and the National League champion Philadelphia Phillies.

Robertson, 37, had 20 saves last season, the fourth time in his career he has had 20-plus saves, along with 2014, '15, and '16 with the Yankees. He had a record 4-3 with a 2.40 earned run average (ERA), as he allowed just 17 earned runs in 63.2 innings pitched, with 35 walks and 81 strikeouts in 58 games last season (36 with the Cubs and 22 with Philadelphia). His rankings were among the best relievers in baseball, as he was tied for seventh among National League relievers in opponents' batting average (.173), tied for eighth in saves (20), and tied for ninth in strikeouts (81). 

In the postseason with Philadelphia, he appeared in eight games, and went 1-0 with one save and a 1.17 ERA, as he allowed just one run in 7.2 innings pitched, with five walks and 11 strikeouts. In the World Series against Houston, he threw 4.0 scoreless innings and recorded a save.

Mets General Manager Billy Eppler said in a statement, "We're very excited to add a pitcher of David's caliber to our bullpen. He has been pitching in high-leverage situations for teams with Postseason expectations since his career started."

Robertson, a Birmingham, AL, native, came up with the Yankees, where he pitched from 2008 through 2014, when he succeeded Mariano Rivera as the Yankees' closer. He then joined the Chicago White Sox in 2015, and he was there until a trade deadline deal in 2017 sent him back to the Yankees, where he finished that season and then spent the 2018 campaign. He then was off to the Phillies in 2019, missed the 2020 pandemic-shortened season before rejuvenating his career in Tampa Bay in 2021.

The right-hander has a career record of 57-36 with 157 saves, a 2.89 ERA (237 ER in 739.1 IP) with 305 walks and 977 strikeouts. His 731 appearances are the eighth-most among active pitchers, while his 157 career saves are also tied for eighth-most. He ranks 13th in strikeout rate by a relief pitcher, as he has gotten K's against 32.1 percent of the hitters he has faced.

In the postseason, he has made 41 career appearances, which ranks eighth all-time, and he has a 6-0 record with a save and a 2.78 ERA (14 ER in 45.1 IP) with 16 walks and 53 K's.


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