It’s Time To Say Good-Bye To The Delgado Shift
I’ve seen enough of Damion Easley, Fernando Tatis and Marlon Anderson before he got injured, to know that we can and should do better than Carlos Delgado at first base. His slump is not technically a slump. Slumps don’t last two years. Delgado is in steep decline and the sooner the Mets realize it, the better it will be for the team.
Carlos Delgado is one of the biggest reasons for this team’s lackluster performance so far this season. Take a look at some of these unnerving statistics on our $20 million dollar man…
As reported in Newsday, among major-league first baseman with 50 or more at-bats, Delgado ranks 30th in batting average (.215), on-base percentage (.294) and slugging percentage (.387). He also is sixth in strikeouts with 41 in 181 at-bats.
Additionally, he is by far, one of the worst fielding first baseman in baseball. The New York Post reports, Delgado’s .985 fielding percentage and 8.61 range factor are both second-worst among first basemen that qualify in appearances.
Also, let us not forget that the only fire we’ve seen from Delgado this season was just this past Monday, when he went off on a reporter who simply asked him his opinion of Willie Randolph staying on as the manager. Rather than giving his manager a show of support he declined to comment and hurled a profanity laced tirade at a guy who was just trying to do his job.
It wasn’t that long ago, in 2005 when Carlos Delgado was being pursued by Omar Minaya, that Mets fans learned Delgado had no willingness or desire to play in New York. I was surprised when Omar traded for him only one year later, and wondered what the motivation was for the Marlins in dealing him. That’s when we learned about his back-loaded contract that is stifling the Mets.
During last night’s thrilling victory against the Marlins, Delgado chose not to join his teammates who all flocked to the field to embrace the moment. He sat alone in the dugout and sulked. Additionally, during that game when John Maine was sent in to pinch run for him, he left Maine hanging when he attempted to high-five him.
As far as I’m concerned, Delgado gets straight F’s in Batting, Fielding, Attitude, Value, and Class. If you want to give him a "B" in leadership just because he walks to the mound and talks to the pitchers when they struggle, then so be it. But I wish he would do less talking with his mouth and more producing with his bat and glove.
Last week Delgado was asked a question about Willie and the team’s performance. He answered, "I don’t get paid to think". You know what, that’s true enough, but being you brought up your pay, when will you start doing what you get paid to do? Why should the highest paid player on the Mets and one of the top ten earners in baseball get a free pass?
I say the hell with him. I’ve seen this team perform without him in the lineup, and they play better without his lethargic bat and anemic fielding. Do us a favor Omar and trade him, release him, cut him, whatever… just do it. And between now and then, if you have to play him, then by no means should he ever get another at-bat against a left-handed pitcher. It’s time for the Mets to say good-bye to the Delgado shift.
About the Author: Joe DeCaro
I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.
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