Please, join me as I throw a handful of dirt on the coffin of Jordany Valdespin’s career as a New York Met.
The one I used to call El Dramático for his ability to spark rallies and hit long home runs is getting playing time for one reason: he’s being shopped. Don’t expect him to be with the Mets past the trade deadline.
I’ve been a staunch defender of Valdespin since the Mets’ first intrasquad game. He had the tools to be a starter in 2013. He still has the tools. Whatever the case, it just hasn’t come together.
There are a plethora of reasons why Valdespin’s days are numbered. He’s batting .207/.264/..328 on the season with a 24/6 K/BB ratio and 4-for-7 in stolen base attempts. He’s 3-for-23 with five strikeouts and no walks since taking over the second base and leadoff duties. Additionally, he’s not playing well defensively and the positions he does play are better suited by other players on this year’s team (Juan Lagares and Daniel Murphy). The list goes on longer than his pimped out dingers. Even though his latest audition isn’t going well, I expect he’ll be sent somewhere for cash or packaged in a trade with some farm arms.
Saturday’s game was a microcosm of how he’s performed since receiving more playing time: a few defensive miscues and little offense. He threw a ball over Jonathon Niese’s head, something you’d see in a Little League game…maybe. He also had two force outs at second that could have seriously injured him. When a second baseman makes a force at second, he normally shifts his momentum toward the outfield to avoid a hard slide. Valdespin just planted on the bag and got upended by Cody Ransom twice. He’s just not doing the fundamentals.
Things could have been done differently during Valdespin’s time as a Metropolitan. He was mismanaged by Terry Collins, he handled situations poorly and every negative was put under a microscope by the media, myself included.
It pains me to say, but he’s poisoning the team. Whether it’s his fault or not is moot. I believe he has a long career ahead of him, but it won’t be with the Mets. He’ll probably be one of the many who leaves the Mets and enjoys success in another venue. Some players just aren’t cut out to play under the magnifying glass in New York.
He could thrive in a platoon role in hitter-friendly parks like Coors Field or Great American Bandbox. Just don’t expect there to be many more Valdespin No. 1 jerseys produced in orange and blue.
What are your thoughts on Jordany Valdespin’s recent one-week audition at second base?