While the Phillies like free-agent reliever Brandon Lyon, they are unwilling to pay the necessary price for him, according to a major-league source.
The Phillies plan to spend between $4 million and $6 million on their bullpen. Lyon would command all or nearly all of that money, leaving the team with little payroll flexibility.
I would love to see the Mets acquire Lyon. He is willing to set up instead of close, and it looks like his salary demands are not out of control. Over the last four seasons, he has posted a 3.45 ERA and 1.26 WHIP. He'll be 30 this season.
He made only $4.25 million last year as a member of the Tigers, and if the above snippet is correct, should be in the market for a similar deal this year or a reasonable raise.
He's not an ace closer, but he's good enough to set up and be reliable - at least relative to relief pitchers in general. According to fangraphs.com, he is a three pitch pitcher: He has a 92 mph fastball he throws 60% of the time, a very hard slider he throws 19% of the time, and a curve he throws about the same amount.
Even better, he is equally effective against both righties and lefties. Righties hit a pathetic .205/.256/.379 against Lyon last season, and lefties hit .205/.331/.286.
I think he'd be the perfect set-up man and fill in closer should anything happen to Francisco Rodriguez... who by the way, was very bad in the second half last year.