Fan Shot By David Eckert
It has been relatively well documented that the Mets are expected to be players in the starting pitching market this year. Some think that they might be interested in a guy like Bronson Arroyo. I am completely against making a move for any starting pitcher that is going to command a multiyear deal and over $5 million.
As of right now, the locks in the Mets rotation are Dillon Gee, Jon Niese, and Zack Wheeler. That’s a top three that I will take any day of the week. Even with this solid trio, however, it is pretty clear that the Mets are not going to contend without their ace, Matt Harvey. If that is the case, why go out and sign someone to a long term contract instead of just finding a couple short-term guys to fill the gap until Harvey is back and some of the Mets young pitching sticks in the rotation?
Sometime this season, prospects like Noah Syndergaard, Rafael Montero, and Jacob deGrom are likely to make their debut. When thinking of 2015, you’ve got to consider each of these three, plus Matt Harvey and Jenrry Mejia. If the Mets do decide to sign a long term starter in free agency, that makes nine (if not more) pitchers that are in position to compete for the rotation in 2015.
Although this has been a position where the Mets have certainly had their issues in recent years, I am optimistic that the bulk of their bullpen this year can be filled with in-house options. A healthy Bobby Parnell closes, and players like Vic Black, Jeurys Familia, and Gonzalez Germen can handle the bulk of the late relief. In my opinion, the Mets should build their bullpen with what they have with maybe a couple of outside additions.
The Mets have their starting catcher in Travis d’Arnaud. However, they are in need of a solid backup. This is especially important because of d’Arnaud’s tendency for injuries. This is a need that can be filled relatively easily via trade or the free agent market.
Oh boy. I am probably in the minority here when I say this, but I believe that the Mets really need to hang onto Ike Davis. Despite his recent struggles, he has shown that he’s got all the potential in the world, and I think giving up on him is a big mistake.
Lucas Duda doesn’t have nearly the offensive talent that Ike possesses. If Ike is traded, I think Sandy Alderson really needs to try to get another first baseman in the trade market, because I simply don’t think that Duda is going to give us what we need. It is speculated that a guy like Billy Butler from KC is available, and I think he could be a good fit here.
Despite his defensive deficiencies, I believe Daniel Murphy should be the second baseman for the New York Mets next season. Although he doesn’t walk much, which goes against the Mets offensive strategy, he is a very good doubles hitter, runs the bases well, and shows occasional pop. Trading him would just create another hole to be filled.
Shortstop is probably the biggest hole the Mets have. With Jhonny Peralta off the market, they probably need to look for a trade partner to fill this spot. It is hard to speculate where the trade will come from because of the lack of quality options on the market. I would almost rather the Mets leave the spot alone for now and not give out big money to a guy like Stephen Drew, who in my opinion is simply not worth it. Perhaps 23-year old Ruben Tejada will get back in shape and play like he has shown he can in the past.
David Wright. Period.
I definitely think that Juan Lagares should be the Mets starting center fielder on opening day, simply because of his defensive prowess. In fact, Juan could bat .230 and I would still love to have him playing on an everyday basis due to his spectacular glove. Also, although many Mets fans, myself included, are not thrilled about it, Chris Young appears to be the man to occupy one of the vacant corner outfield spots, and can hopefully supply some power to this lineup.
The other corner outfield spot is where I expect the Mets to make their biggest splash of the winter and do something big. Whether it be Curtis Granderson, Nelson Cruz, or maybe, though improbably, Shin Soo Choo. They can’t afford to not add anyone there if they want to improve the run production of the team. Eric Young Jr. should ideally end up as a fourth outfielder and a backup to Murphy at second.
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This Fan Shot was contributed by MMO reader, David Eckert. Have something you want to say about the Mets? Share your opinions with over 22,000 Mets fans who read this site daily. Send your Fan Shot to GetMetsmerized@aol.com. Or ask us about becoming a regular contributor.