Swapping Jason Bay For Michael Young

An article by posted on February 9, 2011

Joel Sherman of the NY Post had something interesting to think about this morning. I guess even journalists and reporters love to speculate as much as we fans and bloggers do, but his reasoning for a swap of Jason Bay for Michael Young had some real bite to it.

Sherman says that if he were running the Mets he would be on the phone doing everything possible to pry Michael Young away from the Texas Rangers.

For example, Young and Jason Bay make $16 million exactly each of the next three seasons (plus Bay has a $17 million option in 2014 with a $3 million buyout). The Rangers have clearly wanted to add a more traditional DH-type bat this offseason and pursued Jim Thome and Manny Ramirez, and retaining Vlad Guerrero. Bay gives them that kind of bat plus the ability to play the outfield. So should the Mets try to make a Bay-for-Young deal? Or perhaps should they try to do that then spin Young elsewhere. There are clearly interested teams, such as the Rockies and Angels. The Mets probably would have to eat money to make a deal, but even if they ate $6 million a year they would still bank an overall substantial savings on what was on the books (Bay’s contract) plus add a few prospects, leaving them in a better position moving forward (though worse possibly in 2011).

He also goes says the Rangers might also be interested in Francisco Rodriguez now that they are looking to make Neftali Perez a starter.

Here are some of the positives I see in such a scenario:

1. Swapping Bay and Young would open up left field for promising outfielder Lucas Duda who certainly seemed up for the challenge during a short stint last September and after a huge campaign in the minors leading the league in slugging.

2. It would immediately signal the departure of Luis Castillo and send Daniel Murphy to the bench where he would best be served as a utility infielder. Losing Castillo alone would be a big PR boost for the team. 

3. If the Mets were to lose Jose Reyes at the end of the season, Young could easily take over at shortstop and the Mets could promote Reese Havens in 2012 assuming he proves himself in Triple-A this season. As of now, the Mets have no backup plan in place if they were to lose Reyes aside from the unpolished, unready and light-hitting Ruben Tejada.

Are there some problems with this potential swap? Of course, no deal is ever perfect.

Young certainly isn’t the shining star he was two seasons ago and beyond, but he is still a definite upgrade over the likes of Justin Turner, Brad Emaus, Chen-ling Hu, Luis Castillo and Murphy who I already mentioned..

What are your thoughts Mets fans?

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