Is The Timing Right For Fernando Martinez?
There’s a few stories out there today about how Ryan Church may be dangerously close to becoming a former Met. I’m not sure how to feel about that. One base running blunder should not be reason enough to get rid of someone and calling for his ouster. Would this even be a consideration if it were David Wright who missed third base?
While I disagree with those calling for Church’s head, I do agree he is on the outs with this organization. He never endeared himself to Jerry Manuel, and as his playing time decreased, so did his effectiveness at the plate and even in the field.
The Mets now find themselves with a sad collection of corner outfielders, None of them are solid enough to play everyday, with each only getting 2-3 starts a week at most.
Dan Murphy went from poster boy to bench warmer as his batting average declined. Gary Sheffield earns his playing time because Manuel wants a presence in the middle of the lineup. Fernando Tatis went from platoon leftfielder, to bat off the bench, to semi regular first baseman. Angel Pagan has now been thrown into the mix without any clear role, and we already discussed Ryan Church.
From the looks of things the timing may be right for a new direction. I believe we need to have some consistency in at least one of the corner spots. This mish-mash, pot luck strategy that we currently employ at the corners is not working.
I suggest we take a long hard look at Fernando Martinez. Out top prospect was expected to crack our lineup at some point this season anyway, so I say lets accelerate those plans a little.
F-Mart might be just the thing this team needs right now.
Currently, Martinez leads the Bisons in every statistical category. He is batting .289 with 7 homers and 24 RBI’s. He leads the league in doubles with 13, and his 71 total bases rank sixth. His .511 slugging percentage shows his power potential, and his current gap power would play extremely well in CitiField.
The left handed hitting phenom, has some interesting splits. He is batting .300 against lefty pitching, but most of his power comes against right-handers, hitting four of his five homers against them.
So far in May, F-Mart has taken his game to another level. His percentages are as follows: .333 BA, .389 OBP, .621 SLG, 1.010 OPS. In 19 games he has driven in 16 and scored 15 runs.
MLB.com writes this about F-Mart,
Many still believe Martinez will hit for average and power as he matures. Reviews are mixed, but most still like his bat speed from the left side. He’s got a good arm and played good defense in center this past season.The sky is still the limit. He’ll play at age 20 in 2009 and still has the tools to be an All-Star caliber outfielder.
Last year, Minaya was suggesting that F-Mart would be ready to make the leap to the Mets last August, but an injury foiled that plan. He said this,
“He might be better than anybody we could get in a trade. This kid is legit.”
If the Mets were so eager to promote Fernando Martinez to the big leagues last August, and now F-Mart has even more seasoning and has improved his batting eye and power numbers, then what are we waiting for?
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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