The New York Mets they are signing the reliever veteran John Curtiss to a major league deal, general manager Billy Eppler told reporters. Curtiss will earn $770,000 this season, and next year’s option is valued at $775,000. It is a kind of anniversary gift for this player who celebrated his birthday on Tuesday, reaching another year of life.
Curtiss is not expected to pitch for the entire 2022 season. The recently turned 29-year-old right-hander suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament while pitching for the Brewers last August, an injury that eventually required Tommy John surgery:
Milwaukee had just acquired Curtiss from the Marlins at the trade deadline that summer. He had had a terrific first half in Miami, pitching a 2.48 ERA over 40 innings with a solid 24.8% strikeout percentage and a meager 5.6% walk rate.
Milwaukee certainly envisioned Curtiss serving as a major bullpen piece both down the stretch and for seasons to come, but he only managed six relief appearances as a Brewer. They didn’t offer him a deal in November, choosing not to carry an injured pitcher on their 40-man roster all winter.
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Curtiss only has a little over two years of MLB service, so he will be controllable through arbitration even beyond the 2023 option year. The Mets will do a low-stakes roll of the dice to see if Curtiss can be a member of the bullpen. Major League Baseball next year and beyond. While he rehabs, he’ll earn a major league salary and MLB service time on the disabled list.
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MLB: Gift class! Mets sign right-handed reliever on birthday who won’t pitch until 2023