Early speculation was centered around kid Parnell and veteran Isringhausen, but Beato's shown good stuff this season and deserves at least a friendly nod. Oddly, though, all three candidates are right-handed ... Is Terry Collins really smart enough to weigh all the variables, night in and night out, without the crutch of platoon splits?
Purely based on the numbers, Parnell seems like the prize among the three. He's not been real good at staying healthy, but he's been pretty good at everything else; over these last two seasons, he's got a 2.87 ERA and a 3.7 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 60 innings.
At 38, Isringhausen is hanging by the thinnest of threads, his 3.14 ERA not remotely sustainable considering his poor home-run, strikeout and walk data. The rookie Beato is intriguing, but he's struggled since coming off the Disabled List in late May.
Oh, and there's this: With the possible exception of Aroldis Chapman, Parnell probably throws harder than anybody else in the major leagues. Throwing 100 doesn't guarantee success, of course. But Parnell's already been successful, and my guess is the Mets are simply hoping to ease him into the physical and emotional pressures that accompany the only bullpen role that most fans notice.
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