By Ed Coleman
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You can’t discount it. Manager Terry Collins says it’s going to happen. But when? He doesn’t know. Mets general manager Sandy Alderson is a little more cautious, saying that the matter will be discussed amongst all the principals before the team proceeds with anything.
So will R.A. Dickey pitch every fourth day instead of every fifth, or with three days rest instead of four? Alderson said it ultimately doesn’t just depend on wins and losses this season, but also how it might affect Dickey this year and next, and how it affects the other members of the rotation moving forward.
Going back a couple months, the Mets considered using Dickey on short rest because the knuckleball usually causes less stress on the arm as opposed to more traditional pitches. But Dickey is also not your traditional — or usual — knuckleball pitcher. He’s much different than Tim Wakefield or Charlie Hough. The Mets never proceeded with the idea because they didn’t want to mess with Dickey’s success at the time, or possibly screw up the rest of the rotation.
As for personal accomplishments — which are secondary — Dickey should win 20 games working with regular rest. He already has 14 wins through 21 starts, and probably should get another 12 starts on normal rest through the remainder of the season. If he wins just half of those, he’d be a 20-game winner. The answer may lie ultimately with how many wins the Mets keep garnering as a team, and whether they can recover from the tailspin which saw them recently lose 12 out of 13.
Thus far, on a tough West Coast trip, they’re acquitting themselves nicely.
Here’s Alderson on a couple other topics:
– No, Zack Wheeler, just promoted from Double-A Binghamton to Triple-A Buffalo, will not be in the majors this year.
– There will also be an innings limit on Matt Harvey at the major league level.
– The bullpen definitely needed help prior to the trading deadline (and still does), but other factors entered the picture.
– The Mets were not going to make a change just for change’s sake.
– And what the team would have received in return for trading away one of their secondary pieces (Scott Hairston, Tim Byrdak, etc.) was not worth the changes that must occur.
Should the Mets pitch R.A. every fourth day? Be heard in the comments below!