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Papa Grande in the Big Apple: Mets sign Jose Valverde

Feb 12, 2014, 10:15 AM EDT

jose valverde getty Getty Images

Jose Valverde was rumored to be signing with the Diamondbacks back in December, but that never happened and now the longtime closer has agreed to a minor-league deal with the Mets.

Valverde saved 35 games with a 3.78 ERA for the Tigers in 2012, but his secondary numbers showed a pitcher in significant decline and sure enough last season he threw 19 bad innings before being released in early August.

He has 286 career saves, including leading the league three times, but at this point in his career Valverde should be strictly a middle relief option and even that might be a stretch at age 36. He’ll join fellow minor-league signing Kyle Farnsworth in competing for a roster spot during spring training.

  1. chill1184 - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:18 AM

    Eh, its a minor league deal. Low risk move

    • historiophiliac - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:49 AM

      That’s how he works his way in. FYI, it ends in bitter tears.

    • Old Gator - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:18 AM

      You’ll know they’re getting ready to bring him up when they start moving the outfield fences back again.

  2. nymets4ever - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:21 AM

    Pretty good move. Valverde is definitely a guy worth taking a chance on, I’m not convinced he’s “done” yet at all. His stock has fallen just enough where he won’t demand to take the closer job away from Bobby Parnell, but he’ll still light a little fire under him all the same.

    • Old Gator - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:15 AM

      More like lighting farts under him. I doubt if Parnell is worried about anything except his ligaments, discs and tendons at the moment.

    • proudlycanadian - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:43 AM

      A little green apple for the Big Apple!

  3. stex52 - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:29 AM

    Low risk move, and my gut feel is that it doesn’t work out. But Jose has a way of surprising people.

  4. rbj1 - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:36 AM

    Are the Mets going to sign Todd Jones next?

    • proudlycanadian - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:44 AM

      Kevin Gregg?

  5. xdj511 - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

    My gut reaction is to laugh, but you never know about relievers from one year to the next. He probably won’t challenge Parnell for the closer’s job, but he might turn out to be a solid 7th or 8th inning option along with Vic Black.

  6. twenty1miles - Feb 12, 2014 at 10:54 AM

    Valverde making it to Queens this summer would ensure that even if the Yankees start underperforming, I’ll still have some form of entertainment.

    In all seriousness, as a minor league deal its definitely a good move.

  7. smarshall3789 - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:17 AM

    Good luck with him you’re gonna need it this guyis a choke artist

  8. jwbiii - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    Where’s that commenter from last off season who wanted the Mets to sign every available over the hill reliever? I hope he’s turning cartwheels or popping a champagne cork or something.

  9. displacedtigersfan - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    Reblogged this on Musings of a Displaced Tigers Fan and commented:
    Can’t even explain to you how happy I am about this. Now Valverde can go troll Mets fans for a while and leave the rest of us alone. I only hope that he somehow makes the big league roster at some point this season so that New York’s “true baseball fans” can experience the frustration that is watching Valverde’s inevitable meltdown.

    • mtr75 - Feb 12, 2014 at 12:33 PM

      Nobody cares where you reblogged this and nobody is going to read your blog.

      • displacedtigersfan - Feb 12, 2014 at 1:17 PM

        Trollolololol.

  10. historiophiliac - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:43 AM

    This post is like a litmus test to indicate Tigers fans and non-Tigers fans.

  11. snappysmom - Feb 12, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    Now that Nachos Grande is in NY, maybe Derrick Jeter can thank him face-to-face for ruining his career. Think back to the 2012 ALCS when Detroit was beating the Yankees by 4 runs in the bottom of the 9th inning. Valverde imploded (again) and gave up the tying HRs. It was the top of the 12th inning when Jeter broke his ankle, left the game and Detroit ended up winning the series. Jeter hasn’t been the same since, all thanks to Valverde. Now he’s the Mets’ problem.

    • stex52 - Feb 12, 2014 at 2:39 PM

      All thanks to Valverde? As I remember, he didn’t run out on the field and break his ankle for him. Jeter managed that himself.

      • historiophiliac - Feb 12, 2014 at 3:04 PM

        Don’t talk crazy. The Captain would never do something so wrong as that.

      • snappysmom - Feb 12, 2014 at 3:48 PM

        My point is that Jeter wouldn’t have had to run out for the 12th inning if Valverde had done his job and won the game in the 9th.

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