As was posted on MMO yesterday by Pete Shapiro, rumors circulated that the Mets were talking to the Colorado Rockies and were possibly interested in catcher Ramon Hernandez. Today, Joel Sherman of the New York Post confirms and also writes that the Rockies’ veteran catcher is the number one priority on their wish list.
The Mets have Ramon Hernandez atop their wish list to upgrade at catcher, but team officials insist they see it as a salary dump by the Rockies and therefore will not offer up much of a prospect in return.
The Post was the first to report, in Sunday’s paper, the Mets are eyeing Hernandez, who was originally signed out of Venezuela by then-A’s general manager Sandy Alderson. The Mets also are looking at Boston’s Kelly Shoppach and Seattle’s Miguel Olivo as they prioritize finding a righty-hitting catcher with some pop to work in conjunction with lefty Josh Thole.
Sandy Alderson has said on a few occasions that the Mets were able to take on salary if they felt a particular player could significantly improve the team, and the fact that the front office is unwilling to part with any notable A or B Level prospects makes Hernandez appealing to them.
Sherman adds that the Rockies were initially interested in acquiring Matt den Dekker and lefty reliever Josh Edgin but told the NY Post he will not trade any prospects he feel could help the Mets in 2014 and beyond. In addition, the Rockies also expressed interest in Double-A shortstop Wilfredo Tovar and Low-A pitchers Jacob DeGrom and Domingo Tapia.
Hernandez, 36, is currently on the DL with a left hand strain and is expected to be activated after the All Star break. He was hitting .215 in 27 games with four homers before being injured and had lost his starting job to rookie Wilin Rosario making him expendable. Hernandez is owed about $2 million for the rest of this season and has another year at $3.2 million for 2013 left on his deal.
How much better would he be over a Rob Johnson?
In addition to Hernandez, Mike Silva reported via Twitter that the Mets have scouts following outfielder Carlos Quentin of the San Diego Padres. Silva added that the Padres want “a couple of prospects back,” one of which is last year’s MLB Draft compensation pick RHP Michael Fulmer.
Fulmer is 5-4 with a 2.70 ERA in 14 starts with Single-A Savannah this season and in 70 innings pitched he has allowed just 51 hits while walking 25 and striking out 62 .
Quentin, 29, is batting .268/.406/.518 in 110 at-bats and has seven home runs and 17 RBI his season. He missed the first two months of the season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his knee.
He is owed about half of the one-year, $7.025 million dollar contract he signed before the season and is eligible to become a free-agent this winter.
While I find Quentin to be incredibly talented, the fact that he is always injured is a major concern. In his seven-year career, Quentin has never played in more than 131 games in a season and he has missed 82 games due to injury in the last two seasons alone.