Veteran reliever Pedro Feliciano was brought back to the New York Mets this offseason to improve their bullpen, which finished at the bottom of the league last season. However, for the next two weeks, Feliciano will sit out because of a possibly serious heart condition. This is a precautionary measure from the team and they hope that the left-handed pitcher will make their Opening Day roster.
Feliciano’s heart condition will hurt his chances to make the team, but the Mets’ only other left-handed reliever is Josh Edgin. General manager Sandy Alderson brought Feliciano in along with fellow veteran relievers LaTroy Hawkins and Brandon Lyon for cheap contracts. If he does not recover by Opening Day, Alderson may try to find another left-hander if the price is right.
Doctors will be monitoring Feliciano’s heart for the next two weeks while he sits out of all baseball activity. While two weeks does not seem like a death sentence, the Mets’ recent history with injuries has been atrocious. If he is able to come back on schedule, he should make the team. However, he has not pitched in the league since 2010, and if his condition continues or worsens, the Mets must move on and find another reliever as soon as possible.
The Mets hoped that he would recapture some of the success he had with the team from 2002-2010 when they brought him back. However, Feliciano’s age (36) and his emerging heart condition could mean the reliever’s career is coming to an end soon. The Mets will wait two weeks at least before making a decision and hope that he can recover to play this season.