“John Maine may pitch again in the majors this season, but it’s looking more and more as if he won’t be doing it for Jerry Manuel,” writes Newsday’s David Lennon, after the Mets manager responded to Maine’s unimpressive rehab start for Buffalo (IL) by neither promising promotion, nor considering a bullpen assignment.  In the wake of Liargate, has John Maine dropped even further on Manuel’s depth chart than Oliver Perez? Manuel’s comments have all but vaporized Maine’s value, and while New York Baseball Digest’s Mike Silva openly admits as much (“most teams probably believe the Mets will DFA Maine and be done with him”), there’s a handful of trade scenarios he’s happy to float :

The only way I can see the Mets deal Maine is for an expensive player that is underperforming. Remember, a team out of the race could afford to be patient with Maine and see if he could regain his fastball. Also, Maine has another year of arbitration eligibility so he could be an inexpensive option for someone to look at. I brought up Chad Qualls last week because I think they could use someone like him to potentially anchor the eighth inning. Qualls has been terrible in Arizona and making a little over $4 million dollars this year. Swapping him for Maine would actually be a cost savings for the D-Backs.

Another thought was Will Ohman of the Orioles. He is performing well in Baltimore and a swap of Maine for Ohman would give the O™s a pitcher that could be part of the solution next year. The Mets desperately need a legitimate second lefty to help Pedro Feliciano. Eventually the O™s will deal Guthrie and Millwood so the need for a starting pitcher is there as well.