After a roller-coaster ride through 34 1/3 innings, the New York Mets designated relief pitcher Brandon Lyon on Sunday. The move effectively ends Lyon’s run with the Mets, and without some luck, this could be the end of a long career for the right-hander.
Lyon surrendered a staggering 6 earned runs in his last outing before giving up an RBI single in Sunday’s marathon against the Diamondbacks. In his 34+ innings, Lyon posted a subpar ERA of 4.98, and with that ugly performance combined with a less than 2-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio, the writing was on the wall for the 33-year-old.
It is probably too quick to assume that Lyon won’t be picked up by another MLB team before the end of this season, but it is also far from guaranteed. Lyon has struggled mightily at times during his career, and while he has 79 career saves and various years with quality stats, he isn’t a dominating guy, and he also doesn’t present the everlasting ability to pitch left-handed.
Lyon’s departure was also mitigated by a clause in his contract that, according to ESPN’s Adam Rubin, would have paid Lyon $100,000 per appearance once he reached the 40 appearance plateau for the year. Non-coincidentally, he was DFA’d after just 37 appearances.
For the Mets, the loss is minimal as the team is languishing with a 35-47 record with no end in sight this season. They simply didn’t need another aging right-hander in their bullpen, and with one move, they likely saved hundreds of thousands of dollars. Sometimes, it really is as simple as dollars and cents.