You know, I got so excited about Freddy Garcia and J.D. Drew that this free-agent story totally passed me by. The Mets signed right-handed reliever Guillermo Mota to a two-year, $5 million contract yesterday.
Mota, 33, went 3-0 with a 1.00 earned run average in 18 games with the Mets last season, after they acquired him from Cleveland.
Before Mota was traded to New York, he sucked. So how did he turn it around? The old-fashioned way. Steroids.
And because he got caught, Mota will miss the first 50 games of the 2007 season for violating baseball’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs. From the New York Times:
“Guillermo took responsibility for his actions and expressed extreme remorse for his mistake,” General Manager Omar Minaya said in a statement. “He handled himself in a stand-up manner.”
To Mota’s credit, he’s one of the few athletes who have fessed up after a failed drug test. He offered no excuses and that was refreshing. But are the Mets really going to pay $5 million to a guy who couldn’t thow a strike until he started taking steroids? A guy who will miss the season’s first 50 games? And do they have any reason to think he’ll be any good drug-free?