As reported by ESPN’s Jeff Passan, Betances has a player option for 2021 and a vesting option for 2022. The former New York Yankee right-hander clearly still had a market, and that allowed him to have control over his own future despite his recent injury.
Although Brodie van Wagenen has been rumoured to want to shed some salary before making free agency additions, both Jeurys Familia and Jed Lowrie are still with the organisation (two players who were potentially going to be moved). Familia, as it stands, will be the fourth arm at the back of the bullpen. Betances, Edwin Diaz and Seth Lugo could become a fearsome three-headed monster.
Familia and Diaz had career-worst years in 2019. It is hard to imagine either will be anywhere near as bad in 2020. Diaz is only a season removed from winning Cy Young votes. Betances was dominant in 2018 and is a four-time All-Star. His stuff is up there with the best in the game (he struck out 15.5 per nine innings in 2018). Lugo has been lights out since becoming a reliever full time.
The Mets were 24th in bullpen WAR last season. Their bullpen ERA was fifth-worst. Bounce backs from Familia and Diaz seem inevitable to some degree, which would be enough for a marked improvement. The addition of Betances, and possibly using one of their starters in relief (they currently have six veteran starters after signing Michael Wacha and Rick Porcello) gives them further upside.
With a salary just over $10 million, there’s a lot to like about this Betances signing. It bolsters a bullpen that desperately needs improving, and along with a few other factors, could see the Mets have one of the best relief corps in the Majors next season.