This offseason, the Mets quietly shopped Orlando Hernandez for a trade.
Obviously, no one nibbled on the bait and El Duque is already showing signs of a mis-season injury. Duque did not have surgery on his bunion as planned, but rather on one of his toes. Duque is already falling behind the rest of the pitchers in terms of getting into season shape.
Mike Pelfrey, who is the next best bet to take the 5th spot in the rotation, is my choice to make the team by opening day. As much as I love El Duque, his style and passion for the game, I think he's on the tail end of his career. He needs to get healthy before he takes a stab at taking the 5th spot.
Pelfrey will get his chance this season, no doubt in my mind. I just think it will come well before the Mets or El Duque want it to.