New York Mets closer Edwin Díaz made his spring training debut on Monday, nearly a year to the day after he tore the patellar tendon in his right knee celebrating a win by Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic. That injury forced him to miss the season.

Díaz, who will celebrate his 30th birthday on March 22, faced three Miami Marlins batters and struck each out. According to Statcast, he threw eight sliders and six fastballs. His heater clocked in at 97.2 mph, or nearly two ticks below normal. There's no sense fretting about that decline given that Monday was Díaz's first spring outing.

For those wondering, Díaz did indeed enter to Timmy Trumpet's hit song "Narco."  

Díaz authored a fantastic 2022 season. In 61 appearances, he accumulated a 1.31 ERA (297 ERA+) and a 6.56 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He also notched 32 saves. Not only did Díaz make his second career All-Star Game, he also earned down ballot consideration for both the National League Cy Young and Most Valuable Player Awards. 

Díaz subsequently signed a five-year contract worth $102 million, the largest ever signed by a reliever, both in terms of total guarantee and average annual value.

The Mets are now hoping that a healthy Díaz -- plus some new additions from this winter -- can lead to a better bullpen performance than what they received in 2023, when their unit ranked 22nd in ERA.

"I was one of the biggest pitchers in the bullpen and then I wasn't there," Díaz told reporters, including the New York Post, following his appearance on Monday. "The guys did their best and they battled every single night, but I think this year will be a really good year for us as a bullpen. We have got [Jorge] Lopez, [Jake] Diekman … we have got other good guys that will help us and I think we will win a lot of games."

The Mets are scheduled to open their regular season on March 28 against the Milwaukee Brewers.