Want Brian Wilson as your team's new closer? You'll be waiting until after Opening Day
Wilson had Tommy John surgery in April, which typically for pitchers takes at least a year from which to recover. This is the second Tommy John surgery of Wilson's career, the first being when he was a junior at LSU in 2003.
The news that Brian Wilson will not sign until after Opening Day comes from Scott Miller of CBS Sports, who says that Wilson "prefers not to audition for clubs until he is 100 percent, according to a source with knowledge of the pitcher's situation.."
Miller writes that Wilson is currently at "80 to 85 percent" of full strength.
This is not the case of a guy who wants to prevent a team from foolishly splurging on damaged goods. Wilson would love for a team to foolishly splurge upon him, but right now they're less willing to do so. The longtime San Francisco Giants closer worked out for the New York Mets in mid-January, and apparently the workout did not go well.
The Mets were unwilling to offer Wilson anything more than a minor league contract. Apparently, a slowed-down fastball is forcing some baseball GMs to really fear the beard.
When Brian Wilson was on, he was on. A three-time All-Star, Wilson was the NL saves champion in 2010.
Then in 2011, Wilson posted a 1.26 ERA over a 35-game stretch and acquired third place on the Giants' all-time saves list.
Than in 2012, he pitched all of two innings the entire season. Wilson became expendable when Sergio Romo capably took over Wilson's spot as closer, and the Giants chose not to tender Wilson the $6.8 million he had coming for 2013.
We have not heard much from Brian Wilson this off-season as he's been rehabbing. However, TMZ did manage to get some video last week capturing the current state of Wilson's outlandishly unkempt beard.