Given the financial situation the Mets are currently in, holding on to a guy like Nick Evans should have been a no-brainer. Not only would Evans have been a quality bat and add much-needed depth to a very thin, not-so-Amazin’ roster, but come at a relatively inexpensive price.
This 25-year old has been up and down from the minors so many times with the Mets that I don’t blame him for skipping town on the first chance he got. Evans hit .300 with 23 homers, 80 RBIs and 44 doubles in the minors in 2010 yet only got 36 at-bats in the show (in which he hit .306). In 2011, despite his strong 2010 performance, did not break camp with the Mets in favor of the likes of Brad Emaus and Willie Harris, was DFA twice, yet between Triple-A and the majors still put together a solid year. That kind of instability would have had any other player headed for the hills. I commend Evans for giving the Mets as much of a chance as he did. He held up his end of the deal performance-wise; there was just never a spot for him in Flushing.
There was an article I read during the season entitled “Is Nick Evans The Next Heath Bell?”, and I completely agree. I believe the Pirates picked up a very solid piece for 2012 and likely beyond. I don’t think by any means Evans will be a superstar, but a solid .275-.280 average with 15 homers, 75 RBIs and 30 doubles is not out of the question should he get consistent playing time.
Evans could have been a go-to bat off the bench for the Mets in 2012 at close to league minimum. Now to replace him, Alderson will likely have to spend $1-$1.5 million on someone like Scott Hairston or Endy Chavez to replace him.
Penny-wise Pound-foolish in my opinion.