New Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen has certainly improved on the roster he inherited through trade and free agency, but now’s not the time to take the foot off the pedal.
Even if Bryce Harper and Manny Machado are not available for him to sign (which is obviously ridiculous for a large market team), there’s still some high-end talent on the free agent market. Guys like A.J. Pollock, Marwin Gonzalez, Dallas Keuchel, Adam Ottavino, Craig Kimbrel, Zach Britton, etc.
Head over to Roster Resource (which is a fantastic spot to have bookmarked if you don’t already) and take a look at the their projected Mets 25-man roster right now.
The bench (they assume Peter Alonso starts in minors) consisting of Dominic Smith, T.J. Rivera, Rajai Davis and Kevin Plawecki leaves a lot to be desired, and that’s with Juan Lagares in the starting lineup.
Depth is a serious issue for the Mets, and I’m not talking about Rajai Davis, Gregor Blanco or Zach Lee type depth for Triple-A. I’m talking about a Marwin Gonzalez that pushes a T.J. Rivera to Triple-A. Or a David Robertson that pushes Drew Smith to Triple-A.
The Mets need more first division regulars on their roster, they can’t simply rely on Lagares, Todd Frazier and Jason Vargas to play significant roles. We’ve seen in recent years what can happen when you rely on a team with poor depth.
While I know it’s only December, most of the talk following the signings of Ramos and Familia was not to expect a bat like Pollock or an arm like Andrew Miller (now signed with Cardinals).
Finishing off the Mets offseason by signing the bargain free agents the ilk of Adam Jones, Doug Fister and Boone Logan is not the way you go from a 85-win projection (by FanGraphs) to a serious National League East division contender.
Van Wagenen needs to finish off the 2019 roster the same way he started, by adding starting caliber pieces instead of cheap guys on one-year deals.