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Yankees, Mets Spar Over 'Abused' Pedro Feliciano

Ahh, a good old spat between the hometown teams. Seems the New York Yankees are not too happy with the way the New York Mets treated relief pitcher Pedro Feliciano, now on the Yankee disabled list with an arm injury. The Mets' response? Big whoop, that's your problem.

Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman Saturday said the Mets had "abused" Feliciano, a left-handed relief specialist, in recent seasons. Feliciano did pitch a major-league leading 266 times over the past three seasons, something both teams were well aware of.

When asked about Cashman's comments.Mets' pitching coach Dan Warthen was hardly apologetic.

"They didn't know when they signed him?" pitching coach Dan Warthen was saying Saturday by his locker, with considerable amusement, before the Mets scrambled back to beat Florida, 6-4, in 10 innings. "(Feliciano) was asked whether he was able to pitch. He said 'yes' every day - every day - and wanted to pitch more than we even pitched him.

"That was part of the reason we decided to not re-sign him," Warthen said. "We knew we had used him 270-some times in the last three years."

So, basically, Warthen is saying to Cashman we chewed him up, we spit him and we weren't foolish enough hand him a two-year, $8 million contract. That's your bad there, Brian.

I think I might have to agree with Filip Bondy of the Daily News, who wrote "Joke's on the big guys for once."

Cashman and the Yankees knew precisely how much mileage there was on Feliciano's left arm when they signed him. Complaining about it now seems petty. Besides, wasn't Cashman the Yankee general manager when then-manager Joe Torre destroyed the career of reliever Scott Proctor (83 games in 2006 and 83 more between the Yankees and Dodgers in 2007)? Or, when Torre used Tanyon Sturtze a career-high 64 times in 2005 and watched him break down in 2006? Or, when Torre used Tom Gordon 159 times in two seasons?

The Yankees are hardly innocent in that regard, and Cashman was hardly naive when he signed Feliciano. The Yankee GM should just be quiet and hope that he is right that Feliciano will be back in the team's bullpen within a few weeks.