It’s Time to Give Alonso and McNeil a Shot to Contribute

Peter Alonso/Photo by Rick Nelson of MiLB Photo

Well, here we are again.

The New York Mets have dropped seven in a row to sink their record to 27-33 — the same win/loss record they had through 60 games one year ago.

They made us think the tides had changed this year, putting up an 11-1 start despite fielding almost a carbon copy of the team that lost 92 games just a year ago.

That incredible 11-1 start is now in the rear-view mirror and since then, the Mets have been one of the worst teams in baseball.

Realistically, the team could have been more successful had they actually invested money in upper echelon players and acquired more depth this offseason, but that’s topic for another day.

However, at nearly the midway point of the season, my main concern right now is why Adrian Gonzalez, Jose Reyes and Jose Lobaton are still on the 25-man roster.

Despite the fact that none of the three are contributing much to the team of late, it bothers me even more because the Mets have Peter Alonso and Jeff McNeil tearing things up in the minors right now.

The Mets have scored just two runs in their last 27 innings, and while there’s no certainty that Alonso or McNeil could hit the ground running and help boost the team’s offense, what do the Mets have to lose by promoting them and finding out? Can they be any worse than what we have now?

Alonso, 23, is just punishing pitchers right now for Double-A  Binghamton. The first baseman has 15 home runs and 49 RBI with a .313/.448/.582 slash line in 201 at-bats for the Rumble Ponies this year.

McNeil, 26, isn’t too far behind him and has also put up a robust .332/.407/.648 clip with 14 homers and 42 RBI for Binghamton this year.

And both Alonso and McNeil have superb strikeout to walk ratios, a potential sign that they could make the jump from Double-A to the majors. Each of them have nearly as many walks as they do strikeouts.

There’s not one good reason for Lobaton be up here. The Mets don’t need to carry three catchers, especially one like Lobaton who has neither been good offensively nor defensively.

As for Reyes, we all know how bad he’s been this year. He apparently has backers in the organization who appreciate his clubhouse presence, but at what point does his poor performance on the field supersede his off the field mentoring?

We should no longer have to endure watching a Major League player with a a -1.0 WAR player who has a .141/.208/.197 slash line. Yes, he’s making $2 million this year, but that shouldn’t stand in the way of the Mets cutting bait with him.

And Gonzalez, who had shown flashes earlier this year of being productive, has seen his average slip down to .239 to go along with a .304 on-base percentage.

Would replacing a few net negatives with a pair of top-producing prospects actually improve the Mets’ offense? Maybe, maybe not. But at the very least it couldn’t be any worse than what we’re seeing now, and they could potentially inject some life into an offense that is so bereft of production, that any change is welcome.

About Rob Piersall 1130 Articles
Rob Piersall is a fourth-year student at SUNY New Paltz, studying journalism with a minor in communications. He is also the managing editor for his school's newspaper, The Oracle. A Mets fan since the age of six in 2001, Rob is senior editor here at MMO. His favorite thing is reporting breaking Mets news and transactions as well as writing columns. He is also ready to see what Mickey Callaway brings to the table in 2018. LGM! Follow Rob on Twitter: @RobPiersall.