Last week Topps released its All-Star Rookie team for 2009 and while there were some justified selections and some questionable ones, the player that has the most intrigue for me is the Mets’ Omir Santos. He beat out phenom Matt Wieters, who most thought would be in contention to take home the Rookie of the Year award in the American League.
Did Santos’ season really justify the award? First let’s take a look at his statistics:
281 At Bats
.260 Batting Average (73 Hits)
7 Home Runs
0 Stolen Bases
.296 On Base Percentage
.391 Slugging Percentage
.287 Batting Average on Balls in Play
I know Wieters did not come close to expectations, but Santos’ performance is far from tantalizing. While he had his moments early in the season delivering some big hits for a Mets team that was desperate to grasp onto anything, Santos’ second half left little to be desired.
He hit just .250 with 3 HR and 16 RBI over 128 AB, exposing him a bit for what he truly is, a 28-year old career minor leaguer. While people want to get excited when someone like him shows signs of success, having held on for so long, there is a reason he didn’t get his first taste of the big leagues until 2008, his eighth year of professional baseball (he was drafted in the 21st round of the 2001 draft by the New York Yankees).
We are talking about a player who was a career .258 hitter over 2,229 minor league at bats, hitting just 32 HR. In fact, he only had two seasons where he surpassed the total he hit last season: he hit eight between two levels of Single-A in ‘02 and 10 at Double-A in ‘05.
It would just make no sense for the Mets to look for a catcher to platoon with that type of performance. Exactly what do they think they are going to get? After all these years do they expect him to suddenly figure things out? Do they think he’s going to become a slugger? Or even someone who can post a decent average?
Santos is none of those things, and by now we all need to realize that. What he showed in the second half is the type of production he has been showing since he was an unheralded draft choice many moons ago.
Does keeping him around in order to be the second catcher make sense? Absolutely, but if the Mets enter 2010 with expectations of him making any type of impact at the plate they are making a major miscalculation.
As far as fantasy owners are concerned, even those in two-catcher formats should be keeping their distance. He just doesn’t have the potential to be of much value to anyone, even if he is splitting time and getting a fair share of at bats.
What do you think? Am I being too harsh on Santos? Do you think he could contribute offensively for the Mets in 2010?
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