The New York Mets have signed veteran right-hander Dylan Bundy to a minor-league pact, according to USA Today's Bob Nightengale. He is, to state the obvious, not a candidate to begin the season on the big-league roster.
Bundy, 30, will instead build up his arm strength in the minors. He made 29 starts with the Minnesota Twins last season, compiling a 4.89 ERA (79 ERA+) and a 3.36 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 140 innings. Bundy was particularly prone to the long ball, surrendering 24 home runs, or 1.5 per nine. Dating back to the 2021 season, he's yielded 44 home runs in 230 frames.
Originally the No. 4 pick in the 2011 draft, Bundy has received several opportunities to right the ship. Yet he's finished three of the last five seasons with an ERA+ in the 70s. One of those two exceptions, meanwhile, came in 11 starts during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign. That's when he had the best season of his career, posting a 138 ERA+ across 65 innings and earning enough down ballot consideration to finish ninth in American League Cy Young Award voting. Alas, that now appears to be no more than an aberration.
The Mets could use the depth all the same. New York will enter the season without veteran lefty José Quintana, who will miss the first half after undergoing bone graft surgery on his ribs. The Mets rotation is expected to feature Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander, David Peterson, Kodai Senga, and Carlos Carrasco. Scherzer and Verlander are both at least 38 years old and Senga has dealt with a finger issue this spring. In other words, it can't hurt to have an extra veteran arm in the org.
Elsewhere, the Mets are continuing to wait and see if center fielder Brandon Nimmo (sprained knee, ankle) will be available for Opening Day. Closer Edwin Díaz is expected to miss the entire season after tearing his patellar tendon celebrating a win as part of the recently concluded World Baseball Classic.