Mets bring back hometown reliever Adam Ottavino on $4.5 million, 1-year contract

Adam Ottavino and the New York Mets finalized a $4.5 million, one-year contract Tuesday that keeps the veteran reliever with his hometown team.

Associated Press

Jan 31, 2024, 9:56 AM

Updated 173 days ago

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Mets bring back hometown reliever Adam Ottavino on $4.5 million, 1-year contract
Adam Ottavino and the New York Mets finalized a $4.5 million, one-year contract Tuesday that keeps the veteran reliever with his hometown team.
Ottavino spent the past two seasons with the Mets, going 1-7 with a 3.21 ERA and a career-best 12 saves in 66 appearances last year. In early November, he declined a $6.75 million player option for 2024 that included $4 million that would have been paid from 2032-35, reducing the present-day value to an estimated $4.4 million.
That made Ottavino a free agent. But months later, the 38-year-old right-hander returned to help fortify a Mets bullpen that struggled last season without injured Edwin Díaz.
The star closer has recovered from knee surgery, and Ottavino figures to be perhaps his primary setup man again as part of a relief corps that also includes left-hander Brooks Raley, right-hander Drew Smith and newcomer Jorge López.
“Adam has been a steady, integral piece of the bullpen for this club over the last two seasons,” new Mets president of baseball operations David Stearns said in a news release. “We’re excited to keep him home in New York, where he’s thrived on the field, and we look forward to having him pitch important innings for us in 2024.”
Ottavino, who grew up in Brooklyn, gets a $500,000 signing bonus. He had a 2.49 ERA in the second half last season and finished with 62 strikeouts against 29 walks in 61 2/3 innings. He was 6-3 with a 2.06 ERA and three saves over 66 outings as a setup man for Díaz in 2022, helping New York to 101 wins and a playoff berth.
The Mets are 88-44 in Ottavino's appearances for the team. He's held opponents scoreless in 292 of his 373 outings (78.2%) since 2018, both totals marking the most in the majors during that span.
Ottavino is 39-41 overall with a 3.42 ERA and 45 saves in 13 major league seasons with the Cardinals (2010), Rockies (2012-18), Yankees (2019-20), Red Sox (2021) and Mets. He was presented with the Ben Epstein/Dan Castellano Good Guy Award by the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America at their annual banquet Saturday night.
To open a spot for Ottavino, catcher Tyler Heineman was designated for assignment. That leaves 22-year-old Francisco Álvarez and backup Omar Narváez as the only catchers on New York's 40-man roster.


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