Small sample sizes be damned, but Eric Young has been going out of his way to display some of the talent that made this organization want to target him in the first place — and no, I’m not talking about the fact that he’s arbitration eligible.
Picked up recently in a deal for Collin McHugh, who I can only wish the best to, Young has been tearing it up since his arrival in New York. He has amassed 29 at-bats in a Mets uniform to the tune of a .414/.469/.552 slash line, with 12 hits in those 29 at-bats. Four of those hits have been doubles, and he’s scored four runs. He has a stolen base to his credit, too.
Young also provides something that the Mets are severely lacking in — versatility on defense. Young has returned to his duties at second base with the Mets once already, but shows his true talent playing any of the three outfield positions. His overall impressive speed and recent hot hitting leave him as a prime candidate for time in the outfield and leading off in our lineup.
One can even claim that Eric Young’s real contribution can’t be measured in numbers, but rather seen in the way that he is suddenly a catalyst for a lost Mets team. Sometimes, all it does take for a guy is a change of scenery, and Young could be a consistent producer for us down the line.
That being said, Young does not come without questions. It would be impossible to feel hesitant about how much stock we could be putting into his hot hitting on arrival. People who dislike Jordany Valdespin have cited his so-so numbers in a little over 300 at-bats at the MLB level, so Young’s .264/.332/.348 career average in nearly 800 at-bats should worry them as well. Compared to Valdespin, Young has much less power — but can still play hard in other aspects, so let’s hope that he doesn’t become vilified.
The bottom line, however, is that trading a AAA pitcher for a speedy utility player who may at least play a part in the MLB bench for years to come could turn out to be a a solid move.