The reluctance to promote Amed Rosario has been an increasingly frustrating experience for Mets fans.
In a season that has looked so utterly bleak, Rosario has offered a glimmer of hope. It’s understandable that the team’s fans are clamoring to see him make his debut.
Now, though, it might be best to wait for Rosario until August.
This isn’t to say that Rosario shouldn’t already be here. He should have been promoted no later than June 12 — when the Mets began their series with the Cubs and were a strong home stand away from being back in the playoff picture. Asdrubal Cabrera was hurt, Jose Reyes was struggling, and there was opportunity for Rosario.
To the question: what do you do when Cabrera gets back? The answer is, figure it out then. Look no further than the team they’re playing this week — the Los Angeles Dodgers.
They had a short-term need for a bat so they called up Cody Bellinger. Other guys got hurt, Bellinger got hot, and they made it work even as it forced veterans to smaller roles.
The two Cabrera disabled list stints have given the Mets a window like that and they chose to keep it shut. There was some Super Two consideration with the first opportunity. The second missed opportunity is a little harder to understand.
Now, though, the window is shut. Even with Cabrera still on the DL, there’s no reason to bring Rosario up barring a major win streak or a serious injury to another infielder.
In a strange way, the Mets are now in a position where calling up Rosario hurts their future more than it helps them.
With the playoffs looking like a major long shot, the rest of the season becomes an audition for the Mets. That first audition is a six-week showcase for other teams to scout the Mets roster.
The Mets have a handful of attractive impeding free agents that could net them a prospect at the trade deadline to help the team’s future. Outside of Michael Conforto and Yoenis Cespedes, there likely isn’t a hitter on the roster who is off limits.
They want other teams to want these players. And because of that, they can’t have Rosario playing instead of them. No one is going to offer much of anything for Cabrera or Reyes if they aren’t playing.
Then there’s the second audition — Rosario’s.
In reality, the Mets are going to learn the same amount about Rosario if he comes up today as they will if he comes up on August 1.
Two months is more than enough time to give Rosario a shot to get used to the major leagues. The Mets probably aren’t making the playoffs, so there’s no wins and losses incentive to bring up Rosario now.
The only thing adding Rosario to the roster now does is make it more likely the Mets will get absolutely nothing in a trade for their other infielders.
There’s also another reason the Mets might wait on Rosario — a surely tougher reason to swallow. The Mets have three home games between now and July 14.
With the team slipping out of the race, Rosario is going to be all that’s left to sell tickets. It would seem doubtful the team would call him up when they couldn’t show him off to the home fans.
Rosario should already be here. It can be maddening that he is not. But at this point, there are great benefits to waiting until after the trade deadline.
If the Mets can deal Cabrera or Reyes for a useful piece for 2018 and beyond, then the waiting might be worth it.
Thoughts from Rob Piersall…
A lot of great points were raised in this piece and I think it makes a lot of sense why Rosario hasn’t been called up, at least, for this most recent stretch.
The Mets brass has to realize that playoff hopes are a long shot at this point and that it’s time to break down certain aspects of the team.
I thoroughly believe Rosario will be called up after the all-star break around the time of the trade deadline and will secure a role as a starter as the Mets gear up for 2018.
But as of right now, there’s no reason to call him up, especially since it would take a miracle for the team to make it to the playoffs.