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Jon Niese to sign with Yankees

New York Mets v Pittsburgh Pirates - Game One Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images

Jon Niese will sign a minor-league deal with the Yankees once he passes a physical, Joel Sherman tweets. The Yankees could consider using him as a starter or in relief.

It’s been a long fall for Niese, who in the span of a year has gone from “good enough to trade Neil Walker for” (er, debatably, at least) to “good enough to trade Antonio Bastardo for” to “minor-league contract.” He was already in the midst of a poor season with the Pirates prior to the Bastardo trade, and from there he gave up 14 runs in 11 innings with the Mets.

Anyway, Niese is 30 and left-handed, so he’ll get plenty more chances, particularly since he’s now willing to work in relief. I think of Oliver Perez, who also flamed out as a starter with both the Pirates and Mets, but then ditched his changeup and reemerged as a good lefty reliever at age 31. That probably won’t happen with Niese, but it is a viable career path.