Bartolo Colon officially cleared release waivers yesterday, making him a free agent. The Atlanta Braves, who cut Colon last week, are responsible for the remainder of his $12.5 million salary so any team that signs Colon can do it for the prorated portion of the league minimum. The Mets, who used this tactic to bring back Jose Reyes last summer, have already reached out to Colon’s agent, Mike Puma of the New York Post reports.
Colon’s agent didn’t offer a response yet, but the Mets are expecting to hear back from Colon today. The Mets may not be Colon’s only option for work, as FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that several other teams are showing interest in Colon. This is great for Colon, who will have his choice of landing spots if he chooses to continue his career and try to break Juan Marichal’s record for most wins by a Dominican born pitcher.
As far as the Mets are concerned, a reunion with Colon would be fun, but not necessary for the team this season. Colon has pitched to an 8.44 ERA, although part of that can be attributed to homer happy SunTrust Park, so there is a chance his best days are behind him. The Mets could use Colon’s ability to eat innings for later in the season, particularly when Zack Wheeler runs into his innings limit, but its not as if they will be in a race or anything. If Colon comes back, the fans will be thrilled and it will give the Mets a bit more attention on days Colon starts. If not, the Mets will simply plug someone like Tyler Pill in as they play out the string.