A Fan Shot By Terence Farley
When thinking of an outfield bat for the Mets, the one player I knew I didn’t want was Andre Ethier. He doesn’t have enough power, he can’t hit lefties and he makes a lot of money. The player I wanted was Shin-Soo Choo Then it came out that he probably is out of the Mets financial parameters. When I heard that Choo doesn’t hit lefties particularly well, I wondered how similar they were. I was shocked to see the following lifetime stats:
How could this be? I then decided to look a bit deeper.
2013 HR RBI AVG OBP SLG OPS Choo 0 8 .215 .347 .265 .612 Ethier 3 11 .221 .275 .338 .613
2012 Choo 2 13 .199 .318 .286 .604 Ethier 4 29 .222 .276 .330 .606
2011 Choo 1 7 .268 .336 .352 .688 Ethier 1 13 .220 .258 .305 .563
Neither of these players should be playing vs left handed pitching. They BOTH need to be platooned. The 100 million dollar question is how do you sell your fans on the face of your franchise if he has to be platooned? The obvious answer is you can’t. He has to play everyday.
What about their stats vs righties?
2013 HR RBI AVG OBP SLG OPS Choo 21 46 .317 .457 .554 1.011 Ethier 9 41 .294 .394 .460 .854
2012 Choo 14 54 .327 .403 .523 .926 Ethier 16 60 .325 .398 .546 .944
2011 Choo 7 29 .254 .347 .410 .757 Ethier 10 49 .321 .410 .468 .878
Three year OPS avg. for Choo is .896 vs Ethier’s .892
I concede that Choo is a better player due to his speed (3 year avg. almost 18 steals per game) but he ain’t Lou Brock. Also he is a better outfielder though both need to be corners.
The thing is the Mets CAN platoon Ethier while Choo CAN”T. Offensively to platoon a righty who crushes left-handers would be a much better alternative. Heck, Josh Satin hit .317 with an OPS of .880 against lefties last year. I’m not saying Satin is the answer in the outfield, just and example (wait didn’t Satin say Byrd was gonna teach him to play outfield over the winter? I digress).
Now comes the fun part, money. Both players are 31 years old. Ethier signed a five-year extension for $85 million. One year is off of his contract leaving $71.5 owed. The Dodgers have made it known that they would give back some of that salary. He is due $15.5 mil in 2014. Take that and the Wilpon’s won’t pay a cent this year and his contract is down to three years and $56 mil.
What will Choo get? Could he get $150 million like Ellsbury? It’s possible. But my guess would be five years for $120 million. Choo is seemingly the shiny new toy, the new kid in town. Ethier is yesterday’s news. In reality they are 31 year old brothers. Granted one is a little faster, but can’t hit lefties or be platooned. What would you do? For the money I’ll take Ethier.
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This Fan Shot was contributed by MMO reader, Terence Farley. 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.