The Mets were one year removed from being a playoff threat that nearly made it all the way, and were trying to repeat, despite pressure from the Phillies and Braves. And...they made a lot of very strange roster decisions, from spring training to the end of the season. We're gonna do the sort of understandable ones first.
Jason Vargas, before he became a standout for Seattle and KC, was shipped over to New York in exchange for Matt Lindstrom, and figured he had a shot to try some starts. Unfortunately, the Mets' rotation was pretty set in stone, with Tom Glavine, Pedro Martinez, Orlando Hernandez, John Maine and Oliver Perez staying pretty strong the whole year. So he only got two starts, and they didn't go well. Vargas came away from the season with a 12.19 ERA, with 17 hits and 14 runs allowed. This would be a run that would wound his career, and make him a suspect candidate for the majors until the Mariners would take a chance on him in 2009.
But, with the injury to Pedro Martinez, the team needed more starting options before landing on Mike Pelfrey.