Morning Grind: Who’s Our Outfield?!
In what has been quite the roller coaster year for the 2012 New York Mets; one thing has been consistent, and not in a good way. With some exception to a select few, this outfield has been just awful. The Amazin’s lost two starting outfielders from 2011 in Beltran and Pagan, and merely replaced them with Andres Torres, and we are now seeing the effects of that. Not only has this season’s outfield been an eye sore on both sides of the diamond, but 2013 is shaping up to have an even more ugly trio patrolling the grasses of Citi Field.
Who can come in and make an impact next year that’s in the system right now? Obviously you will see Lucas Duda and Kirk Nieuwenhuis in the mix, hell even throw Matt den Dekker in there. Duda and Captain Kirk had up and down years in the show, as did MDD in Buffalo. They all have the talent and the drive to get there, but the fact of the matter is that they strike out at a higher rate than my friend Kevin does with girls at parties! All three of them are arguably the organization’s best chances long term in the outfield, but they need to learn to make consistent contact, they need to hit major league –and in den Dekker’s case, AAA– pitching. Oh, and Duda needs to learn to play the outfield.
Bay is just pitiful, and it will be even more disgraceful to see him on the 2013 roster. I understand the guy is trying hard and all, but the way he is going, he’ll be lucky to hit Eddie Gaedel’s weight come season’s end. They did it with Oliver Perez and Luis Castillo, I presume that cutting him will be heavily discussed, but what if it isn’t? Are we going to have to deal with this lunacy for a fourth straight year?
Jordany Valdespin? There is no question he’s been impressive both at the plate and in the outfield considering he was a “natural” (I use that term lightly) middle-infielder. However, ‘Spin has got to get his attitude in check. His reputation that once proceeded him is now here. Barking at Kirk and then kicking a helmet and hurting his toe, now upset with the veterans for ruining his white t-shirt which he wore to the park against team rules? If this is what he is like as a rookie, I shudder at the thought of what his attitude would be like should it go unattended.
Scott Hairston has had himself a career year. When guys such as Ike Davis and Duda regressed, he has picked up a lot of the slack. Hairston now goes into the winter without a contract, and there is a good chance he does not return to Flushing in 2013 because he is “too expensive”. Don’t even get me started on the idea that Scott Hairston is out of the Mets’ price range, but frankly he has been the lone outfielder to consistently produce all season long. Even if he were to return, the odds he hits at this level next year are not likely.
Then after that who do you have? Mike Baxter has been solid, but he is by no means an everyday player. Great off the bench and spot starting, but if we are looking at Baxter as a starting outfielder next season, that is a problem. Andres Torres? He’ll be non-tendered for sure. Don’t expect much from the free-agent wire, I’d expect a similar offseason to last winter (i.e. bench players and a few relievers).
Who is our outfield? Beats me. Anyone got any ideas?
About the Author: Clayton Collier
Clayton, a Long Island native and die-hard Mets fan, started writing online about three years ago. He is currently a Journalism major with a minor in Broadcasting at Seton Hall University. Although very disappointed with the current state of the team, Clayton remains hopeful that the young prospects in the farm system will bring the Mets back to a respected franchise in baseball once again. Besides writing for MMO, Clayton is also a staff member at 89.5 WSOU, Seton Hall's modern active rock radio station. You can contact Clayton by following him on Twitter: @Clayton_Collier or E-mailing him at MaybeNextYearMets@yahoo.com
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