The Mets’ Mistake with Josh Satin

josh satin

Ike Davis or Lucas Duda.

Lucas Duda or Ike Davis.

It took until mid-April for Sandy Alderson to finally make a decision that he was going with Lucas Duda at first base, and therefore, trading away Ike Davis. Since then, a day on Twitter can’t pass without some Mets fan tweeting the comparison numbers between Ike and Duda. It never stops.

But what has been lost in the ongoing debate about who the future first baseman of the Mets should be is the handling of Josh Satin.

The Mets have a player in Satin who presents a perfect platoon opportunity. He hits lefties and hits them well. His career OPS numbers vs. LHP relative to the league’s split of right-handed hitters against lefties is 33% above average. The only thing preventing him from hitting lefties is playing time.

If we leave Ike Davis out of the conversation, since he only had a few at bats vs. southpaws while he was still on the Mets this season, and compare Lucas Duda to Josh Satin, we notice a disturbing pattern.

Satin vs Duda LHP

Satin has more plate appearances vs. LHP than Duda this season, but not by a wide margin. This is because the Mets see Duda as an everyday first baseman now that they have traded Davis. It doesn’t seem to matter that Satin is clearly the better option against southpaws considering his career statistics. And this is where the Mets are missing the point.

The debate to start the season, when the Mets inexplicably came up with the idea of playing three different first baseman in three straight games, should have been a simple one. The Mets had two left-handed hitters who can’t hit lefties, and one right-handed batter who can. They should have made an early decision on trading Ike, thus keeping Duda, but from the start, playing him in a pure platoon role with Josh Satin.

Instead, there was mass confusion surrounding the first base position, it took too long to make a decision on Ike, and Satin is 3-28 so far this season. He is not receiving enough regular at-bats, both because it isn’t often the Mets face a lefty to begin with and, for some reason, he is not guaranteed a start when they do. It makes it hard for a player like Satin to get into a groove.

Statistics courtesy of Baseball Reference.

Presented By Diehards

  • I agree with this article fully he has had 28 at bats in how many games . . . last season when he was getting play time on a consistent basis he was doing well. . . love the mets bleed orange and blue here but man there making it harder and harder to root every year.

  • FL Met Fan Rich

    Why bother bringing a prospect up if your not going to play him regularly?

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    Forget scrubs like Satin and Campbell(Soup) we need some Gavin Cecchini articles.


  • since68

    The tail shouldn’t wag the dog.
    Giving Satin at bats should not trump picking between Duda ans Ike, even though the process was poor. Satin is not a major prospect and did not perform this year. He needs to go back to AAA and get his stroke back.
    NEXT up. Soup. mmmmmm good

  • Dark HelMet

    You wish. He’s soft. He’s one of the dudes like Josh Thole (both likeable) where you just go “How’d they get here?”

  • Derpy

    The reason they aren’t playing Satin is because he hasn’t played in so long and they know he is as cold as the arctic air. This is just another case of Sandy being “conservative”. Yes, lets keep a player on the team that the manager isn’t willing to use and even if the manager is forced to use him he can’t hit because he hasn’t played in a month. The Mets have a great, GM, amirite?

    Send down Satin, call up soup. This is the common sense move that should have happened a while ago. Inevitably, soup will get cold and Satin will get hot in AAA and you can swap them again. Just keep playing swappy swap with them.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    It’s nice to have someone who can hit lefties, but if he can’t hit righties his value is no less limited than if he were unable to play the field, a la Rusty Staub. In these days of expanded bullpens and reduced benches it’s impossible to justify having such a one-dimensional player on the bench, and pretty much every RH batter can hit lefties anyway. So his sole skill wasn’t all that valuable. Especially with the inability of this team to string hits together, such a player would only have value if he was able to tie a game with one swing of his bat, but any player who is useless against righties really doesn’t belong in the big leagues.

  • JB

    You can make your entire argument again but replace Satin with Duda vs lefties. That’s my point. The two players only work if they are platooned properly.

  • Waz0787

    There is no mistake he sucks simple as that. Only reason he was playing Because he loves to walk mets new philosophy get on base crap. Hope he never plays in the majors with the mets again. Lutz and campbell are more talented

  • MetsfanInParadise

    Not so for two reasons: Duda has power and Duda can hit righties. Since what, 80% of pitchers are RH, that gives Duda more value than Satin in two ways. If a player’s ONLY skill is hitting lefties without power he’s not going to have that many occasions to be useful and doesn’t justify a roster spot.

  • Benny

    People on here all offseason were stating that a platoon of Duda or Ike with Satin would guarantee good – great production. I guess not everything is a given like that. Not every platoon can and will work, as a matter of fact platoons probably have a higher failure rate than success rate because not every player can just play part time and play at a respectable level. Consistent playing time is very important, but overlooked with this regime.

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    Great point.

    But do you remember the people who were saying Satin should be the starter and Davis and Duda should be cut???

    Havent heard them in a while o_O

  • mets4lyfe

    Off topic, but I want to share this.

    Here’s a little tidbit about Terry Collins I came across reading an article about the former Pirates SS Sam Khalifa:

    “The last straw for Khalifa came one night during a road trip. He remembered that he called the team trainer to say he would be on the team bus in five minutes. The Bisons, then managed by Terry Collins, now the manager of the Mets, left him behind anyway, he said.”

    Never change, Collins. From what I’ve read in past articles about Collins, not only is he an awful baseball manager, but he doesn’t appear to be a very good person either. All that ‘nice guy’ act that he puts up when the cameras are facing him is just a facade.

  • JB

    Bench players aren’t complete players. That is why they are bench players. On a team with plenty of left handed hitters, having a guy who can handle lefties off the bench makes sense.

  • metstastic

    Who are you referring to? Soup is not a prospect.

  • Brian D.

    While the lack of playing time hasn’t been good for Satin, the reality is that he isn’t that good. He will put up tremendous numbers in the minors, but he doesn’t have the talent to produce in the majors. He doesn’t have enough power, speed, or defensive skills to become a impact player in the majors.

    As for his numbers against lefties, he hasn’t accumulated enough AB’s against them for those numbers to be meaningful.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    The reason successful platoons are rare is that you need an uncommon combination of circumstances: absence of a single adequate player, as well as 2 players who perfectly complement each other. Some recent examples have been Teufel/Backman, Royster/Flannery at 2B for the ’84 Padres (sometimes known as “Timry Flanster”), and Lowenstein/Roenicke for the ’83 Orioles. Casey Stengel also used to effectively platoon his outfielders, such as Gene Woodling and Hank Bauer, with the Yankees in the 50s. But it’s harder to do now with fewer bench spots available, so the players have to have some versatility. Being a player who ONLY hits lefties, and without power, is not versatile. Period. The Mets can’t afford to waste a roster spot on a player with such limited value.

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    – Thats why when Phil Nevins was a top prospect he tried to kill Collins.
    – Valdespin went nuts on him at one point

    – Duda yes the mild mannered Duda had a spat with Collins who went to the media and said afterwards that Duda needs to grow up

    -Stay Classy Terry…………..


  • MetsfanInParadise

    See my comment below for elaboration of the same concept. Not only not an impact player, not even a sufficiently useful one.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    When was that, 20 years ago? Most baseball people say he HAS grown as a person. And I daresay they know him a bit better than you do. His on-field managerial skills will never change though. Hopeless

  • MetsfanInParadise

    The evidence suggests otherwise

  • BronxMets

    it was more SA being stubborn then anything else and believing he could work a trade. I think we have to wait until the PYBNL is announced before we judge this. Although I am not saying he handled it correctly.

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    “He doesn’t have enough power, speed, or defensive skills to become a impact player in the majors.”


    But, unfortunately Brian these are the type of players that Alderson targets.


  • MetsfanInParadise

    So they’re not playing him because they haven’t played him. A tautology (circular reasoning). What’s the REASON they haven’t played him? He’s not very useful

  • jb

    Why not give Dykstra a shot?

  • MetsfanInParadise

    Soup is hot. Hot soup. Perfect for cool drizzly nights like last night.

  • JB

    The point here isn’t that if Satin platooned full time with Duda they would both be awesome.

    The point is that given both players are on the roster, if used properly, they could get better than 3-28 from Satin.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    Does anyone doubt Valdespin was a problem child? Much as I hold Terry responsible for a big part of the team’s woes, you can’t lay that one at his door.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    He was unable to cope with the vagaries of the schedule, which has had the Mets seeing fewer LH pitchers so far this year. It goes back to versatility again. Partly through circumstances beyond his control he wasn’t very valuable. You can’t keep him sitting around, hoping for the right moment. you have to react to the real world.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    Awesome? Please. He got 200 ABs in the 2nd half of last year and hit .279/.376/.405. Hardly awesome. Sandy may think the OBP justifies everything but neither .405 SLG or .781 OPS from a 1B is adequate.


    You don’t want to have a guy on your bench that can only hit lefties and also only play 1 position. If I’m to have a player on the bench I want him to be able to play more then one position. The versatility will get you into more games and give you more at bats.

  • 2GuysMets

    There is a name for right handed hitting players, with no power or speed, who can’t hit right handed pitchers.

    Minor leaguer. Satin is going back where he belongs.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    The label is right but the description is off–it’s righties that Satin can’t hit. Which is too bad for him, since most pitchers are RH

  • T Boogy

    If there was really a “mistake” with Satin then I really don’t mind. We needed Duda and Ike to get more at bats so they could be evaluated by the Mets and other teams, and lately so Duda can get more comfortable. And also, let’s get real: Satin is nothing special and we have two other guys in the minors who are more than qualified to take his spot.

  • JB

    I said the point is NOT that he is awesome. It is simply, they could get better than 3-28 from him if they played him right. That is all.

  • john q

    They knew Duda was going to be the first basemen back in spring training. They couldn’t trade Ike because he got hurt so they had to wait until the season started to show that he was healthy. That’s all.

    Satin is quadruple A type player. Not a bad platoon player against lefties because of his high on base% but he’s very limited defensively so he can only play 3rd & 1rst base. He doesn’t really have enough power to play those positions plus he doesn’t have any speed so he’s a fairly limited overall.

    Probably ideally Satin would fit in as a platoon 3b on a team with a lefty hitting 3b with bad lefty splits like Cody Asche of the Phillies.

    But teams don’t really platoon that much anymore. Also teams cary so many pitchers in today’s baseball so your limited number of bench players have to be kind of versatile.

    Duda is a temporary solution at 1b, I doubt he’s in their long term plans.

  • You deflated your own argument for even mentioning Valdespin who was his own worst enemy and needed no assistance from anyone else to look bad.

  • billpulsipher

    said it 5 months ago, and said it again. All 3 1st baseman sucked. The desperately needed Abreu but were too cheap to pay him. the end

  • JB

    It is a separate discussion whether Satin is best for the roster. And I agree with a lot of you on points related to that.

    The argument in this piece is that given he is on the roster, how do you play him to get the most out of him? Not the way the Mets did.

  • Taskmaster4450

    Satin proved that success at the major league level can be fleeting. Like many, he came up and did well especially against lefties. However, this year was a different story. The league caught up to him. That is what happens. Do you think major league pitchers are going to keep getting shelled by guys without making adjustments? Of course not. Satin, per Hernandez, has a lot of moving parts which creates holes at the major league level. Couple this with the fact that Satin didnt swing until he had two strikes on him (and them not all the time) and you can see why people are down on him.

    As for the ABs, or lack thereof, that is the breaks. A lot of bench players dont get a ton of ABs. How many did Recker have last year in April and May when Buck was playing almost everyday? Yet he was still able to come in and contribute when given the chance. If Collins has half a brain, which is questionable, how many ABs will Abreau get? Not a ton. That is life as a bench player. Which is another reason why you want a vet like Abreau on the bench and not a younger guy like MDD who should be playing everyday.

    Satin was nice story while he lasted…now it is time to move on. NEXT.

  • MetsfanInParadise

    It was your word, not mine. “…they would both be awesome.”

  • JB

    Read the entire sentence… There is another word there, “isn’t”

  • $14435385

    This kind of indecision is epidemic in the organization…the result of too many cooks in the kitchen. It also doesn’t help that the cooks are dumb.

  • Frank Francisco

    Lol @ all the comments on this thread saying the league caught up to Satin after 23 AB’s. You guys know nothing about baseball.

    That being said, I’ve thought Campbell was the better option since early last summer so I don’t really mind that Satin is being demoted.

  • derek murphy


    Sorry to say but you couldn’t be more wrong. Satin I doubt would be on any other major league roster. He can only play the IF corner spots and he’s a very bad defender. He came up as a middle infielder but could not stick because he’s brutal. When you have a guy backing up the corner IF spots an be a bat of the bench you want him to have some power. Satin had none. Last year I wanted him on the team to be a platoon partner at first cause we had nobody better.

    This season he should have not come out of ST with the mets. Campbell has been a legitimate option since last season. He probably replaced satin half way through the season. The fact of the matter is we have a few options now that are better than satin. I understand what your saying about not getting at bats but he does not deserve major league at bats. Satin playing at his best dont nearly bring as much to the table as Campbell does. How can the mets justify continuing to loose with better players in aaa than on the major league roster. It’s time we start throwing stuff at the wall and see what sticks. See which guys are going to be a part of our core going forward.

    They have called up Campbell and Flores these guys I’ve been calling for all season. They should have been with the team a long time ago. They need to call up Thornton and black and put them in the pen. They should pull the plug on the Ike Davis experiment if you take away his 2hr 4rbi game he becomes a very weak singles hitter. He’s had 5 years to show something so I don’t want to hear about him getting a chance he has gotten plenty. They should call up Dykstra and see if he can continue what he has done the last 3 years. He’s an excellent patient hitter who should be at the very least as good as Duda. I have no reason not to think he’s better. They also have all 3 of DeGrom, Syndergaard & Montero ready to pitch at the major league level. Every position we can improve by reaching into the minors we should. There is no reason for a rebuilding club to have farnsworth and valverde on the major league roster when we can improve that combo with black and Thornton.

  • derek murphy


    He probably SHOULD have replaced satin halfway through last season.

  • Derpy

    They went on a long stretch where they didn’t face any lefties. They also had **THREE** first basemen.

  • JB

    I agree with everything you are saying here. I think I should have made it more clear in the piece that it wasn’t an argument in favor of Satin on the roster over other players. It was saying that the reason he is 3-28 is because they haven’t used him right considering that he is on the roster. And instead of forcing at bats on Duda or Ike when we know their struggles vs lefties, they should have used him then.

  • Kevin H

    While the Mets never officially called it a platoon, it certainly felt like it was. I can only remember one start Duda got against a lefty. You can’t judge it by ABs. The starting pitcher doesn’t pitch the whole game and you can’t flip flop these guys every time a reliever comes in. I think Satin was given ample opportunity. He just didn’t deliver. Time to work it out in Vegas.

  • john q

    Satin doesn’t have enough power to play 1b and he doesn’t make up his lack of power with a high enough batting average or on base %. Overall his skill set is way too limited. He can’t play outfield and he can’t play the middle infield positions. Plus, he’s a “right handed hitter” who has a high on base percentage but has limited to no power and is relegated to playing 1b or 3b. Righty first basemen like that don’t exist in major league history so 3b is really his only home. Even at that mediocre fielding righty third basemen with no power and a high on base percentage don’t really exist either.

    The only guy I can think of who made it at the major league level who is even somewhat similar to Satin was Toby Harrah. But Toby Harrah had about 5-6 years in the late 70’s early 80’s where he was putting up a .385 on base %. But he was still averaging about 17hr a season. I don’t know if Satin could hit that many HR in a season.

    Ideally he’s best suited to play 3b but Wright is there. And he’s not versatile enough to be a bench player in today’s baseball. Probably best case scenario you can play him in a righty/lefty platoon at 3b which would work on the Phillies. Or a team with no 3rd basemen could just stick him at third and let him get his walks

  • Mikey

    Considering the fact that Satin was probably once a decent trade chip (back when he was hitting) it was probably a mistake to keep him up while they were playing Musical 1Bs with Duda and Davis. And now that they have anointed Duda the everyday guy, Satin would be much better off down on AAA playing everyday and getting his swing back until such time as Duda gets hurt or a trade partner for Satin is found.
    We would be better off with someone like Abreu or Lutz acting as the Backup 1B on our Roster as they can play other positions as well, meaning more Roster flexibility.

  • Mike

    Satin stinks dude has zero power, speed, defense and he’s looked awful this yr. He had a nice yr last yr but he’s 29 and he doesn’t have the track record for the FO to be patient with him. I hope they keep a strict platoon split with Campbell and duda. Terry has to stop burying his bench players give them at least one start a week to keep them fresh like willie used to do, good for everyone.

  • 2rings

    Totally wrong..Problem with Josh Satin, is Josh Satin.The only reason he has hung around is he is the poster boy for the completely wrongheaded hitting approach…keep taking fast balls down the middle until you get 2 strikes Josh, then get called looking

  • JB

    2013 AAA Stats:
    Eric Campbell – 8 HR in 425 PA
    Josh Satin – 9 HR in 264 PA

  • Anthony

    I didn’t dislike satin, in fairness to him he was not used much an proved to be not a great bench player. Some guys can excel at the role some can’t . He isn’t ideal player for the role because he lacks power an speed. This is really a front office blunder that is hopefully being corrected. Good luck soup this team needs a spark I hope he delivers an can handle the limited role he has

  • The Mets are not that bright. Nope. Not a newsflash, That said, Satin has been bad in limited work and Campbell is playing out of his mind. For a lineup deficient of positives, you give the hot hands a chance. Then again, we have Terry, and who knows. That guy almost never plays young players.

  • Flatbush0460

    Player development is not in Collins vocabulary, a man who manages as if he’s fighting for his job day by day. I wish today was the day he finally hit the shuffleboard court, permanently

  • rmkabadi

    Campbell brings more versatility and more options of the bench. Plus his bat was too hot that they couldn’t ignore it. Satin will be back but he simply wasn’t getting the ABs to ever get into a groove.

    Duda sucks. I’ve never ever understood what the fascination is that this front office has with him. He’s not a great hitter, not a great fielder, and his strength is drawing walks.

  • Andrew Herbst

    Satin does’t have enough power or speed to be a bench player.

  • Mets4ever

    Totally agree. Satin had a decent year last season. That’s it. Because of that he was automatically given the job even though Soup outplayed him in spring training. Bottom line Satin isn’t very good and deserves to be demoted Problem with the FO is there is no accountability. That’s why Tejada is still on the team. Do these guys EVER want to win? I’m so frustrated with the Wilpons / Alderson /Collins. Next move should be to promote Montero move Mejia to closer or 8th inning role. Bring up Black and replace Collins within Wally

  • a bench player only capable of playing 1B and only capable of hitting lefties (and not actually even doing that this season)? Doesn’t sound like a mistake to me.

  • JB

    People realize that Satin has shown more power than Campbell right?

    I like the Campbell call up, because he is hitting well, and this offense needs a shot in the arm. This piece wasn’t about that. It’s about using Satin right if he is on the roster.

    But don’t be fooled folks. Satin and Campbell’s minor league numbers are scary close and Satin has had more power, so if you want a power bat to replace Satin, Campbell isn’t it.

  • Derpy

    The point is that neither of them will ever get enough major league at bats to stay fresh, so you swap them out to AAA every few weeks so they get enough playing time to actually remain a useful bench piece.

  • derek murphy

    Campbell has a lot more power than satin.

  • DrDooby

    Satin´s problem was on full display again last night: An inability to make consistent contact. It´s tough to carry a bench piece with limited defensive value who doesn´t make contact. Bobby Abreu may well be on a similar path it appears.

  • derek murphy

    Campbell really turned a corner last year in the power department. This season he’s on pace for 80 extra base hits. Satin never sniffed that. 50 extra base hits is a great season for satin.

  • derek murphy

    I liked satin he served a purpose its time to move on. Campbell has played every position this’s season. He’s a. Better fielder, plays more positions, is a better hitter n has more power. Campbell is an asset to any team he is the type of super sub teams look for.

  • The whole premise of this article is dead wrong. Hanging onto these marginal scrubs is the reason this team is way worse than mediocre.
    Making statistical arguments for keeping Josh Freakin’ Satin is worse than useless. Let’s get a 3D pie chart on where we would be if we resigned Justin Turner or Nick Evans, or Quintanilla, or every other busted up utility guy that has not earned their paychecks here.
    I bashed the hell out of Duda for over a year and lost out. Guess what, he’s here and actually doing OK this year. I don’t love the guy, but he’s “the guy” and should get every possible at bat. Do we really need to concern ourselves with how fairly a career minor leaguer was treated as the 24th man on the depth chart?
    Bring up Flores and see if he can do it. We know that Tejada CAN’T.
    Bring up Soup and see if he can do anything. He can’t be more useless than Satin.
    Bring up Puello (in a while) and see if it’s the steroids or actual ability. Kirk, EYjr, etc. Oh eM effin’ G!
    Stop molly coddling these useless scrubs and attempt to find actual PLAYERS.

  • Destry

    16-18 isn’t way worse than mediocre. Its mediocre

  • Destry

    Vegas baby. Vegas. Satin had the same numbers in Vegas that Campbell did.

  • Destry

    How many bench players do you know that have power and speed?

  • Rod Moses

    haha satin is on his way out, mets , already brought up this guy cambell to replace him.

  • Sorry, my comment lacked precision. I was referring to a period that spanned much longer than 5 weeks. I’m talking about the steady, automatic downward spiral that has been the last 7 years.
    I got a little upset when 14 – 11 made me feel like they might actually inch slightly above mediocrity. Regression to the mean, I guess.

  • I think I am dumber after reading this article or whatever it’s supposed to be.

  • HamPorter

    bottom line should and always be: produce or be replaced.
    with the moves made the past couple of days, if anything, this should put most of this roster on notice: start producing or we’ll see ya later. i think next on the shuttle may be d’arnaud unless he steps it up and soon. produce or get sent down. this is the majors and this is how it should be. you need to find your swing or throw strikes? do it in the minors.

  • ed charles

    The guy has ZERO power. He’s a career minor leaguer. The only mistake the Mets made with him (or Duda for that matter) is trying to sell either one of them — throw in Ike too — as MLB First Basemen. Stop pouring through statistics to justify the ridiculous. Howard, LaRoche and Freeman are the first basemen in our division and you’re selling stats about a Duda/Satin platoon??? Yeah, teams must be super frightened when THAT two-headed monster come up in the ninth.

  • JB

    Teams aren’t going to be super frightened by any current Mets option at first base. So if it has to be Duda and Satin on the roster, my point was simply play them appropriately.

  • JB

    If people don’t like Satin, fine. But if the argument is against his power, and offering Campbell as a replacement, you need to look up the numbers. Satin has had more power than Campbell at every level. More home runs last season in AAA in nearly half the plate appearances.

  • Andrew Herbst

    True, but the problem is Satin isn’t a good enough hitter to be an every day player.

  • JB

    Josh Satin is 3-28 this season and Campbell is off to a torrid start in the minors, hence the sentiment by many that Campbell is a much better option.

    The common theme on this thread is that Satin has NO power.

    I agree it is the right move to call up the hot hand to inject some life into this offense. But don’t tell me it’s about Satin’s power.

    Here are the power numbers for both Campbell and Satin over their last two seasons in the minors.

    2012 Stats:
    (AA) Eric Campbell – .830 OPS, 9 HR, 465 PA

    (AAA) Josh Satin – .833 OPS, 14 HR, 527 PA

    2013 Stats:
    (AAA) Eric Campbell – .910 OPS, 8 HR, 425 PA
    (AAA) Josh Satin – .911 OPS, 9 HR, 264 PA

  • ed charles

    And my point is playing either of them is inappropriate.

  • ed charles

    totally agree

  • JB

    Fair enough.

  • ed charles

    Vit – what passes for acceptance with Mets fans has become a total joke. You can criticize direction, players, management and ownership and be as much of a fan of the Mets as any. You don’t have to reduce yourself to trying to find answers to the preposterous.


    Finally someone saing the right thing here

  • Mike B

    Satin has too much movement pre swing. Not a swing that holds up vs. ML pitching. Not sure if Campbell works, but Satin has looked awful, power or no power. As bad as Tejada in his inability to drive the ball.

  • Metstheory22

    I read that Allan Craig or Adams could be available soon.

  • SL