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John Lannan signs with New York Mets

Jan 18, 2014, 4:38 PM EST

Photo by USA Today Photo by USA Today

After leaving the Nats to join the Phillies last season, lefty John Lannan is now headed to another NL East rival.

Lannan agreed to a minor league deal with the New York Mets on Saturday with an invitation to spring training. The Long Island native will take a shot at making the Mets roster, and his chances might be decent.

The Mets will have Zack Wheeler back for his second season, Jon Niese will be there, plus Bartolo Colon who they signed as a free agent. They’ll also have Dillon Gee who had the best year of his career in 2013. But beyond those four, there could be an opening in their rotation.

According to, Jenrry Mejia is their expected fifth starter at the moment. He’s a 23-year-old with potential – he held a 2.87 ERA in seven minor league seasons – but Lannan is a proven commodity when healthy. Mejia is also expected to be on an innings limit as a veteran of Tommy John surgery.

Lannan pitched six years in Washington before moving on to the Phillies. He encountered injury problems in Philly for the first time in his career and posted an ugly 5.33 ERA in 14 starts along the way.

Before joining the Phillies, Lannan was a solid MLB starter. He went 10-13 with a 3.70 ERA in 184 2/3 innings for the Nats in 2011 and started Opening Day in both 2009 and 2010.

The Mets are buying low with a minor league deal and Lannan, 29, has a lot of work to do to regain his status in the majors. But as long as he’s healthy, he could be a solid addition to the Mets’ staff.

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  1. kirbs3256 - Jan 18, 2014 at 5:25 PM

    I hope he makes the roster, he is a good guy…….

  2. natsjackinfl - Jan 18, 2014 at 5:54 PM

    As someone who has a connection to the Mets, I can say that bringing in John Lannon on a minor league contract and promoting Frankie Viola to AAA pitching coach are connected.

    • natsfan1a - Jan 18, 2014 at 6:35 PM

      Good luck to John (when the Nats aren’t facing him).

      On another note, I can say that Frankie Viola is an awesome name, particularly for NYC. :-)

  3. Eugene in Oregon - Jan 18, 2014 at 7:44 PM

    First, thanks for the link to I hadn’t seen that before; very useful.

    Second, for NatsJack, what do your Mets connections tell you about the financial health of that franchise? Ever since the Bernie Madoff financial meltdown, the Mets have obviously suffered. I had expected — based on reporting and their own PR — that this year might finally see an uptick in their ability to spend. But apart from Curtis Granderson (not a good signing, in my opinion) and Chris Young (meh), I’m just not seeing it. Or, at least, not smart spending. And I can’t imagine they’re seriously in on Masahiro Tanaka.

    • Section 222 - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:07 AM

      What about Bartolo Colon?

    • natsjackinfl - Jan 19, 2014 at 3:25 PM

      When I sent a congratulatory note on the Granderson signing I added a comment about going after Garza.

      I got a three word response. “Out of money. “

  4. Sonny G 10 - Jan 19, 2014 at 1:52 AM

    Good luck, John, as long as it doesn’t hurt the Nats.

  5. Section 222 - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:09 AM

    “Mejia is also expected to be on an innings limit as a veteran of Tommy John surgery.”

    That sounds like deja vu all over again for Lannan.

  6. nats128 - Jan 19, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    John beats the Braves. That could work out well for the Nats and the Mets.





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