I read some scuttlebutt last night about the Philadelphia Phillies possibly honing in on free agent to be Carlos Beltran this winter.
If every free-agent signee were able to guarantee a replication of the previous year’s performance, Beltran would be No. 1 on the Phillies’ list. In 600 plate appearances for the Cardinals in 2013, he hit .296/.339/.491 with 24 home runs. More important than Beltran’s overall numbers is the fact that he is a switch-hitter who carries a career .289/.355/.523 batting line facing lefties from the right side of the plate. In other words, he would offer the Phillies’ left-heavy lineup more balance than virtually any other free-agent candidate.
The writer went onto speculate that the Phillies may face a strong challenge by the Mets in targeting the same middle tier options for the outfield.
This is relevant to the Phillies’ outfield situation mostly because the Mets’ outfield situation is the worst in the National League. How bad did things look at Citi Field? The middling .720 OPS posted by Phillies outfielders was 35 points higher than the one recorded by the Mets, by far the worst mark in the NL. Which means the two NL East rivals could end up going head-to-head even before the season starts, especially when you consider that both teams’ top draft picks are protected, meaning each can sign a top free agent without fear of surrendering a first-round selection (the Phillies are slated to draft at No. 7 overall, the Mets at No. 10).
Look, we weren’t getting Beltran anyway. Oh sure, we’ll hear all about how interested we were and how he’s all that, but in the end it’s the money. It’s always the money…
By the way… I totally forgot that the Phillies picked ahead of us… Not so sure I like that… Do you smell smoke?
“The plan is to keep them. Next year, yes. And my plan is to always keep them,” Monfort told The Denver Post on Wednesday. “Is that the smartest thing in the world to do? I don’t know. But for our fans I think it’s the best thing to do.”
Gonzalez batted .302 with 26 home runs and 70 RBIs this season despite playing in just 110 games. The left fielder missed the final two months of the season with a sprained right middle finger and opted against surgery after playing in instructional-league games last week in Arizona.
Tulowitzki, despite having missed just under a month because of a rib injury, again put up elite numbers for a shortstop, batting .315 and adding 81 RBIs to go along with his 25 home runs.
“I would say if Oakland, Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh can win, there’s no reason we can’t,” Monfort said.
The Rockies are in a similar financial position as the Mets and need pitching, while the Amazins need position players. They’d likely match up, but not unless the Mets were willing to part with Noah Syndergaard, Dillon Gee and probably another piece like Wilmer Flores for either of those players.
It’s still too early and things will change as they always do, but don’t put too much credence into anything that GMs say.
The point is that most of the time when a GM says anything, assume the exact opposite. It always works for me…