Permit me to ponder the closer situation for 2012.
Let’s start with the fact that I feel the closer role is one of the most over rated roles in Major League Baseball. There are only a handful of guys that legitimately have that “Oh great, no way we’re going to score on this guy.” reputation. The rest of the closers out there are basically the most talented reliever their respective team has in the bullpen.
When you stop and think about it, shouldn’t you expect that most major league pitchers possess the ability to stop their opponents from scoring on them in the only inning they take the hill? They get a bit of a head start really. The closer has the benefit of being able to watch what has been working on each hitter throughout the entire game.
That being said, I understand today’s player prefers a set role on the team and someone has to take on the responsibility of ending the game. Clearly, the Mets are still trying to figure out who this will be in 2012.
The most important skill this person needs to have has nothing to do with 100 mph fastballs or devastating sliders. It has everything to do with being able to have a short memory, or as Terry Collins puts it, being fearless.
Do Bobby Parnell or Pedro Beato have this trait?
If I had to answer today, I would say no. But they haven’t exactly had an opportunity to develop it either. Maybe one of them will surprise us. In the event they do not, I don’t see Mr. Alderson investing a lot of money in a new option. I don’t have a huge problem with it either. That money should be spent elsewhere.
If they do bring someone new into that roll, I hope they are looking for someone who has…..marbles.
Let it be known that Tom should receive credit for the marbles reference.