Mets send Jeurys Familia to the bullpen

Jeff Curry

The Mets will work out prospect Jeurys Familia as a reliever this spring as they try to fix their bullpen with internal options

The New York Mets need bullpen help, there is no question about that. They have been connected to just about every remaining reliever on the market. However, their best chance to fix there bullpen could come from players who are already in the organization. The Mets seem to recognize this; Jeurys Familia, one of the team’s top pitching prospects, will work out as a reliever during spring training, Adam Rubin tweets.

Familia threw 12 innings last year for the Mets in a brief September call-up, starting one game and make seven relief apperances. He posted a 5.84 ERA in that small sample as he struggled with his control, but the 23 year old could potentially be an important part of the 2013 Mets bullpen, now that he is committed to relieving.

The young pitcher from the Dominican Republic was ranked fifth on the Mets top 20 prospect list from MLB.com this off-season. To this point, he has been a starter in the minor leagues, but a move to the bullpen has always been looming. MLB.com’s prospect analyst Jonathan Mayo explains:
"His lack of command and the lack of a consistent third pitch makes most thinking a relief role makes the most sense, with the potential to be a future closer."
The Mets bullpen had the second worst ERA in baseball last season, but GM Sandy Alderson is yet to sign a high profile arm to provide an upgrade. This move could mean the Mets are going to focus more on internal options. Along with Familia, the Mets could turn to 23 year old Jenrry Mejia to help out the bullpen.

Like Familia, Mejia has worked as both a reliever and a starter at the major league level, while primarily starting in the minors. The two youngsters may be better options for fixing the bullpen than pricier free agent options like Brian Wilson, Jose Valverde or Francisco Rodriquez considering the Mets rebuilding plans and the financial restraints Alderson is currently dealing with.

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