Tuesday, December 15, 2009
#731) JOSE LIMA
Jose Lima signed a minor league contract with an invitation to major league spring training camp on February 14, 2006. He was assigned to Triple-A Norfolk to start the season, but was recalled to New York on May 7, 2006. The Mets found themselves in need of a starting pitcher so they called upon "Lima Time". Jose did not prove to be the answer as he went 0-3 with an 8.79 ERA in three starts before being designated for assignment on May 20th. After clearing waivers he was returned to the minor leagues. Then once again the Mets recalled him to New York when fellow pitcher, Heath Bell was optioned to the Tides on July 4th. Lima was given a starting assignment on July 7th facing the Florida Marlins. It would prove to be his last game as a New York Met. The low point of the bad outing was when he allowed a grand slam home-run to the opposing pitcher, Dontrelle Willis. Following the game, the right-hander was once again designated for assignment and this time returned to Norfolk to finish the season.
The free-spirited pitcher was the victim of a massive heart attack and passed away on May 23, 2010, at the young age of 37. "Lima was an exceptional man," said Winston Llenas, president of Aguilas Cibaenas, a winter ball team that Lima had played for in the Dominican Republic. "This is a great loss for Dominican baseball and the country."
Jose Lima signed his card for my friend, John Guzman during one of his trips to the Dominican Republic on September 29, 2009.