The New York Mets, who are looking to build a pitching staff that can replace what they have lost in R.A. Dickey, were previously rumored to be interested in Roy Oswalt. Even with the team considering, and eventually signing Shawn Marcum, there was a distinct possibility that New York could go after Oswalt too. However, that possibility was all but squashed today.
Adam Rubin of ESPN New York said there is "nothing going on" with Oswalt and the Mets. That limits Oswalt's options even further as he continues to look for a team willing to give him another chance. Oswalt is looking for the chance to continue starting even after the Texas Rangers moved him to the bullpen last year. The Mets looked like they may be a fit because of their need for pitching, but the team is clearly going in a different direction.
Oswalt did not sign until May 29 last year. He signed with the Rangers after they quickly took the lead in recruiting the then 34-year old. Perhaps it was the time away from the game or his nagging injuries, but when Oswalt began pitching for the Rangers' big league club last season, he struggled. The team was hoping he would help fill the void left by the numerous pitchers fallen by injuries. Instead, Oswalt may have cost them wins.
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In 2011, Oswalt started nine games and came out of the bullpen for eight games. He went 4-3 with a 5.80 ERA. Most troubling may have been the -0.3 WAR he totaled in 2011. The Rangers, had they not relied on Oswalt, may not have been in a battle for the division lead all the way until the last series of the year against the Oakland A's. That may be hyperbole, but it's possible that the Rangers could have wrapped up the division just early enough to have still snuck in and avoided the one-game wild card playoff.
In his career, Oswalt has pitched for three different teams over 12 seasons. Despite his struggles last year, Oswalt still has an impressive 163-96 record with a 3.28 ERA. He has seen his productivity rise and fall over the years, posting a 2.76 ERA as recently as 2010, but at 35 years old now, Oswalt may not have much left in the tank. With the Mets out of the running, there may not be many more teams interested.