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Mets sign Bartolo Colon to 2-year, $20 million contract

New York has put eight figures down in the hope that Colon can continue defying age for two more years.

Ezra Shaw

The New York Mets have made their second big splash of the winter, signing Bartolo Colon to a two-year, $20 million contract, reports Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports.

Based on 2013 stats alone, Colon was one of the best free-agent starters available this winter. The right-hander posted a 2.65 ERA and walked just 29 batters over 190⅓ innings this past season, surpassing even the most generous of expectations. Given that next year will be his age-41 season, though, it's likely that the right-hander had some trouble finding the multi-year deal he wanted.

Colon was reportedly looking for a deal north of the two-year, $22 million pact that Scott Kazmir signed with the A's, but has ultimately agreed to a deal for $2 million less, which seems to indicate his market wasn't as lively as he hoped. At $10 million a year, the Mets are essentially getting Colon for Scott Feldman money.

Colon has been incredibly durable since returning from the ashes in 2011 -- averaging a 3.32 ERA and 169 innings pitched per year -- but that doesn't necessarily mean he'll be able to continue his run of age defiance in New York. The list of 41-year-olds to put in enough rotation time to qualify for the ERA title is a short one: just 20 starters since 1961 have accomplished the feat. Nine of them did do it within the last decade, however, so Colon's chances are much better now than they were 25 years ago.

With Matt Harvey on the shelf for the 2014 season, Colon will help solidify the middle of a Mets rotation that will likely be bookended by a bunch of young-ish arms: Jon Niese and Zack Wheeler on the front end, Dillon Gee and Jenrry Mejia in the back.

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