Forget Beltran, It’s Bay That Worries Me The Most

An article by posted on February 8, 2011

I don’t know about you, but while we should all be concerned about what kind of production we will get this season from Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran, it seems to me like Jason Bay is getting a free ride. Why?

I look at both Carlos Beltran and Jose Reyes and I know exactly why they have performed so poorly, they were injured and missed a lot of time because of those injuries. But when they played last season:

Jose Reyes –  563 AB, .283 BA, 2 2B, 10 3B, 11 HR, 83 R, 30 SB 

Carlos Beltran – 220 AB, .768 OPS,  11 2B, 7 HR, 27 RBI, 23 R

And in their last full seasons in 2008:

Jose Reyes – .297, 204 H, 37 2B, 19 3B, 16 HR, 113 R, 68 RBI, 56 SB

Carlos Beltran – .284, .876 OPS, 116 R, 40 2B, 27 HR, 112 RBI, 25 SB

You could see they were explosive and dynamic players… both of them.

Before Jason Bay was felled by his concussion, he was hitting .259 with just six homeruns in 348 at-bats. At the time he hit the disabled list almost every regular in the lineup save second base, had hit more homeruns than Bay - the one thing he was being paid an enormous sum of money to do.

I couldn’t care less about his 44 walks and his .347 OBP, that was the last thing on our minds when we gave him that 4-year, $66 million dollar deal. We needed a big power bat in the middle of the lineup to protect David Wright, and instead we got a player long on excuses and short on explosiveness.

Poor Jason Bay is what I’ve read and heard… The strain of his big deal and playing in New York was just too much for him… What a load of BS.

Why should I give Bay or any free agent looking for a mega-deal, sympathy for not being able to play under the pressure and weight of the big deals they wanted and signed?

Why should I give any big free agent a pass in the first year of a big contract because he was playing under increased pressure?

If that’s going to be the case, then cut yourself in for the league minimum on the first year of your contract and take your reward in years two and beyond. Problem solved.

The other myth is the one that has them having to take one full season to adjust to playing in New York… What’s that all about?

Are the strike zones any different in New York, or do you get just two strikes instead of three before you are called out in New York?

Once you are in between those two white lines, everything is the same for all players, and this built-in excuse that all Mets free agents are allowed to suck hard in their first year is baseless and has no merit.

You want to get played like the big boys, then play like one.

Yes, I’m worried about Beltran and Reyes being healthy and producing great seasons in 2011. I hope they both are in great shape and can play 150 games or more this season.

But where Jason Bay is concerned, I worry a lot more because his poor play had nothing to do with being injured. In fact, whenever he was asked by reporters, Bay would always reply that he felt great. His problems were either mental OR he was in the first stage of his career decline at the ripe old age of 32. Take your pick, but either option stinks.

Memo to Bay: Mets camp has been open since January 24th. You think you might want to show up a little early and make an effort to go into 2011 with a gung-ho attitude and a much better effort than last season?

About the Author ()

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 and interact with other passionate Met fans like you. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.

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