David Brown

Habitual lefty: Mets' Feliciano pitches in 91st game, wants more

David Brown
Big League Stew

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New York Mets lefty Pedro Feliciano(notes) might not be the best reliever in the majors, but you have to hand it to him for something:

No other pitcher gets his name in the paper more often.

Feliciano made his league-leading 91st appearance on Wednesday, adding to his personal record and tying him for the fifth-most games pitched in single-season history.

"Everyday" Eddie Guardado(notes) has nothing on "Persistent" Pedro ("Frequent Feliciano"?) because Eddie never appeared in more than 83 games. Chump change.

(Editor's note: Stewie @Fonzieforever informed us that Mets announcer Gary Cohen calls him "Perpetual Pedro.")

Feliciano doesn't have enough season left to catch Mike "No, you're doing it wrong!" Marshall, the Los Angeles Dodgers workhorse who made a record 106 appearances in 1974.

But, if Mets manager Jerry Manuel uses Feliciano judiciously — that is, calls on him in each of his team's four remaining games — Feliciano would finish No. 2 on the all-time single-season list, passing Kent Tekulve ('79) and Salomon Torres(notes) ('06) with 95 appearances.

That's exactly what Feliciano wants, too.

From MLB.com:

"As soon as I pitched in 80 games and I realized that I could break my record, I told them to push me there," Feliciano said of [...] Manuel and pitching coach Dan Warthen. "I told them to push me to break my record."

Tuesday, Feliciano did so, appearing in his 89th game. So Manuel approached him to ask how he felt.

"He asked me if I wanted one more game," Feliciano said. "I told him I want six more games."

Ha! Easy there, you daily beast. A sight-impaired person could see that Feliciano pitching that much isn't bound to be a good thing.

But it is fun to consider.

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As somebody once said, it would be a mistake to confuse activity with accomplishment, but count me among those who think Feliciano's workload is pretty cool. It's not every day a pitcher appears in nearly 60 percent of his team's games.

Wait, that kind of IS nearly every day. The only thing Mets fans at Citi Field hear more than "Now pitching, Pedro Feliciano" is "Play ball!" and "... the home of the brave." Nobody in the majors has pitched in more games than Feliciano the past three seasons combined.

And the Mets, like any team, should be keeping track of how often and how much their relievers warm up. How many games (and how many times in those games) has Feliciano warmed up this season? I'll bet it's almost every game and, like, five times a game.

Though not exactly Mariano Rivera(notes) out there, Feliciano is a decent reliever; he's been great this season against lefties, the reason for him being used so much. He might even parlay his abilities (or, repeat-abilities) into being a Type-A free agent this season, which is why the Mets are actually concerned about their will to re-sign him.

But, on his way to amassing 91 appearances, Feliciano has accrued only 61 2/3 innings — because righties hit .345/.445/.405 against him.

I'm not sure if I'd pay Feliciano, who's 34 years old, $3.5 million a year.

Then again, it's so comforting to have him around. If only to call his name.

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