Mets’ David Robertson ready to pitch whenever needed in Edwin Diaz’s absence
With Edwin Diaz likely out for the season after suffering a torn patella tendon in the World Baseball Classic, the Mets are going to need someone to step up into the closer role.
The team isn’t unveiling their plan just yet, but they have a handful of different options who could make a case. Brooks Raley and Adam Ottavino have been mentioned, John Curtiss also has late-inning experience in the past and is putting together a strong spring.
Perhaps the most logical, and likely, option, though, is David Robertson.
Robertson signed a one-year, $10 million deal with the Mets this offseason. He was expected to help form the bridge to Diaz alongside Ottavino and Raley in the later innings.
However, things have changed.
Replacing a pitcher of Diaz’s caliber is close to impossible, but Robertson recently told reporters he’s ready and willing to take the ball whenever Buck Showalter gives him the call.
“My plan coming here was to throw whenever Buck called on me and asked me to pitch,” Robertson said.
“I’ll do whatever’s asked of me. I came here to try to win a World Series. If pitching in the fifth, sixth, or ninth inning is when I have to pitch, that’s fine with me. I’ll do whatever it takes to help this team win.”
Robertson got off to a late start in Grapefruit League action, by design, but so far he’s thrown a pair of scoreless innings.
The right-hander is coming off a season in which he posted a 2.40 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, and 81 strikeouts across 58 appearances with the Cubs and Phillies. He also recorded 20 saves in 28 opportunities.
Robertson is a proven back-end of the bullpen arm, closing down 157 games across his 14-year MLB career. He has experience successfully pitching in New York and is capable of being effective against both righties and lefties.
While losing the best closer in the game certainly is a big blow to the Mets bullpen, Robertson remains confident in himself and the rest of the group to step up and get the job done late in games.
“We still have a lot of talent in this clubhouse," he said. "Obviously we would love to have Edwin, he’s exceptional. But moving forward we’re just going to have to figure out ways to get outs later in the game. We’ve got the talent here, we just got to go out there and do it.”