The New York Mets finalized their 2015 Opening Day roster Saturday morning, making their final cuts of the spring. Here’s a look at who will be featured when the Mets open up the 2015 season on Monday against the Nationals.
There are no surprises in the starting lineup for the Mets. Going into Spring Training there were no spots truly up for grabs. With a strong spring, Wilmer Flores solidified his position as the starting shortstop. The Mets were wary that Flores’ double play partner, Daniel Murphy, would have to start the season on the disabled list with the strained hamstring he suffered on March 20th. Murphy has not appeared in a Major League Spring Training game since that date, but he will meet the team in Washington, D.C. for Monday’s Opening Day matchup against the Nationals.
The Mets announced that they would be going with a four-man bench to start the season, leaving utility-man Eric Campbell off the roster. Campbell was expected to make the team, after spending the majority of 2014 on the major league roster. Another player who did not make the team was Johnny Monell, who had a fantastic spring. Anthony Recker edged out Monell as the backup catcher, solely based on his track record as a power bat off the bench for New York the past two seasons. Kirk Nieuwenhuis was out of options, making him destined for a roster spot, though hitting .322 with a .412 on-base percentage in the Grapefruit League he further strengthened his case as the team’s fourth outfielder.
LHP: Jon Niese
With Zack Wheeler undergoing Tommy John surgery, the Mets added Dillon Gee to, what’s expected to be, a impressive starting rotation. In his return from Tommy John surgery, Matt Harvey picked up, in Spring Training, right where he left off in 2013 (K:BB ratio of 21:1 in 22.2 innings). Bartolo Colon will start on Opening Day and Jacob deGrom, the reigning NL Rookie of the Year, will pitch the Mets home opener on April 13th against the Phillies.
The Mets will be starting 2015 with an eight-man bullpen. If he was not on the major league roster, Buddy Carlyle, could have opted out of his contract. Thanks to a phenomenal 2014 campaign, Carlyle does make the team. Rafael Montero was competing for the fifth starter spot with Dillon Gee, ultimately losing that battle and will pitch out of the bullpen. Jenrry Mejia is the Mets’ closer until Bobby Parnell returns from rehabbing after undergoing Tommy John surgery in April of 2014. The Mets acquired Jerry Blevins and Alex Torres on March 30th to shore up the left side of their bullpen, along with Rule-5 pick Sean Gilmartin.
New York opens up their season Monday against the Washington Nationals. Bartolo Colon gets the nod for the Mets against the Nats’ biggest offseason acquisition, Max Scherzer.