Mets take chance on Mota, deal for Indians reliever

NEW YORK -- Three years after Guillermo Mota brawled with
the Mets, the reliever was traded to New York by the
Cleveland Indians on Sunday for a player to be named.

Mike Piazza charged the mound after Mota hit him with a pitch on
March 12, 2003. Piazza later went looking in the Dodgers' clubhouse
for Mota, who also hit him in spring training 2002. The catcher
left the Mets after last season to sign with San Diego.

Mota, a 33-year-old right-hander, is 1-3 with a 6.21 ERA in 34
games for the Indians this year, allowing 25 hits and 19 walks in
37 2/3 innings with 27 strikeouts.

"Our scouts have seen him, feel that the velocity is good. He's
healthy," Mets general manager Omar Minaya said. "Hopefully a
change of scenery, change of leagues can hopefully produce better

Mota, who originally signed with the Mets in 1990 as a
shortstop, was dealt by the Dodgers to Florida along with current
Mets catcher Paul Lo Duca in July 2004. He was traded to Boston
after the 2005 season as part of the Josh Beckett deal, and the Red
Sox shipped him to Cleveland in January.

Mota missed more than a month of 2005 due to a sore elbow.

"Up until last year he was one of the better setup men in
baseball," Minaya said. "It's a move that has some potential
upside, and really it's not going to cost us much."

New York will pay only about $275,000 of the approximately
$690,000 remaining in his $3 million salary this season, with
Cleveland paying the rest. Mota is eligible to become a free agent
after the season.

Mota is expected to report Tuesday, when New York opens a
three-game series against St. Louis, and the Mets will make a
roster move then.