Friday, November 22, 2013

Mets sign OF Chris Young and Curtis Granderson....Hopefully the first of a few moves aimed at building a better lineup


 As we head into the 2014 baseball season, the main question facing NY
Met's GM Sandy Alderson is how are they going to upgrade the offense?
Their first "major" move was the signing of former All Star Outfielder
Chris Young  to a one year
$7.25 Million dollar contract. The 30 year old Young is coming off a sub par year with the Oakland A's. Although he seems
to have plateaued as a player, Young does bring power, speed,and a good
glove to the outfield. He is good for 20-25 HR's, 20 SB's and 30 plus
doubles if playing full time. I think that the fact that it is only a one year deal makes it worth the risk. Along with Juan Lagares and Curtis Granderson, the Mets would have an excellent defensive outfield. With the price
for established starting position players exceeding 10 mil a year, Young may prove to be a bargain. Let us hold judgment to see

what else the Mets do to improve their lineup. As you can see by the numbers below The Mets need some more sticks. Based on career numbers, one can assume that
Young will help improve the outfield power production while contributing on the base-paths and defense. However, I don't think this was the type of signing
that most Met's fans were hoping for. With outfielders like Curtis Granderson, Nelson Cruz, and Jacoby Ellsbury still available, Met fans were hoping
to land a proven performer and not one of the usual suspects that we have become accustomed to the last 4 years.
What makes things especially frustrating is when the crosstown Yankees go out and sign a Brian McCann, or The Cardinal address their weakness at SS by signing Jhonny Peralta for four years.
While I don't want the team to spend money frivolously on free agents, the teams hierarchy has to realized the market for these players, and that there is no such thing as a risk free signing.
We must take chances on players that have a proven track record preferably under the age of 32. When you look at the 2013 tables below, you see a real deficiency at a number of positions and places in the lineup. Lets look at each position/place and figure out what
we need to do.

Update Alert: Mets Sign Curtis Granderson to 4 year 60 Million dollar deal....

Well this helps to add more power to the middle of the lineup. While Curtis strikes out a ton, he also can get on via the walk and he brings a well rounded athletic package to spacious CitiField. He should be able to take advantage of the power alleys to hit some doubles and triples while still hitting 25+ Hr's. A much needed addition.

Catcher

I think a realistic forecast would have Met's catchers improving in both Avg., OBP., with slugging a big question mark. With the loss of John Buck via trade, the team can only hope that Travis d'Arnaud hit .260-.275 with some extra base power.
Anthony Recker can expect a slight increase of plate appearances, and may be able to crack double digit HR's after hitting 6 in only 135 AB's. The Mets need to add a veteran starter to compete with Recker in Spring Training.
The .219/.288/.366 slash line just wasn't good enough.


First Base



OBP was the lone bright spot for the team last year. Ike Davis regressed to the point of now being thought as needing a change of scenery. A sub .400 Slugging percentage from a corner infield spot is not acceptable at the Major League level. What do The Mets do? This is probably Sandy's toughest challenge. Do they give Ike one more year? Remember Mike Jacobs? What about Lucas Duda? He has a very similar skill set as Davis. Power, walks, and a low BA. If money were no object, could the Mets sign a guy like Nelson Cruz to play First Base? I am willing to give Ike Davis one more year.




Second Base



To trade or not to trade? That is the question. Daniel Murphy had a very solid 2013. He is solid in the clubhouse and is a "gamer" who cares about the game. He is a very streaky hitter who winds up with adequate numbers offensively. He has above average power (40 doubles and 10-15 hr's), has improved tremendously in the field while working hard at turning the double play but he lacks instinct. His aggressiveness on the basepaths will occasionally have him run into outs. He has actually become very adept at stealing bases where he had a surprising total of 23. Eric Young could be an option if they decide to trade Murphy.



Short Stop


This is an area that must be addressed. If The Mets don't go out and trade for a SS, then Ruben Tejada must have a bounce back year. The numbers .215/.285/.276 are ugly.



Third Base


David Wright had a solid season but needs help in the lineup and has to stay healthy. He is now 31 and has missed at least 50 games in two of the last three years. Injuries may start to be a concern.Top hitting prospect Wilmer Flores played thru injuries during his call up while Wright was on the DL and The Mets must find a way to get him some at bats

Outfield


Curtis Granderson signing for 4/60M, essentially replaces the production that Marlon Byrd gave the Mets in 2013. He has a solid glove, runs well and offers a decent walk rate. High K's are a concern so I think The teams next big bat acquisition should be an under 125 strikeout a year guy . Eric Young (NL SB leader) was a pleasant surprise with the glove in left field. His speed gave the Mets an added dimension. Granderson, Young, Lagares and Chris Young would give the Mets a very good defensive outfield. My choice would be to call the Dodgers and see what they would want for a guy like Matt Kemp.




Starting Staff


Jonathan Niese, Dillon Gee, and Zach Wheeler are a solid threesome. The farm may offer help with either top pitching prospects Rafael Montero (Who has pitched with success at AAA) or Noah Syndergaard (Considered the better prospect but with only 11 AA starts). Last years back end of the rotation signing of Shaun Marcum was a bust and they need to find someone to log 200 innings. Let's hope they go after an established (think Bronson Arroyo or Bartolo Colon) healthy starter and not the crap shoot of a pitcher coming off injury.

Update....Mets sign Bartolo Colon to a two year/20 Million dollar deal!

Well the Mets just changed the perception of the team with this move. Adding a pitcher that finished 6th in the Cy Young voting makes the team relevant again. While they still have two huge holes to fill (Shortstop and the bullpen) at least they didn't stop with the Granderson signing. They have a acquired a pitcher that  pounds the plate with his fastball and can give you a chance to win every time out. Switching leagues and not having to face the DH should help Colon continue to have success. Now of course he doesn't come without risks. A 2012 PED suspension and the fact that he is overweight and 41 years old will scare some fans. All we need is for him to stay healthy. 

Bullpen


Before his season ended with neck surgery, Bobby Parnell showed some maturity as a closer and the hopes are that he return in 2014 as a legitimate end of game option. The loss of veteran LaTroy Hawkins must be filled. Vic Black, acquired in the Marlon Byrd trade may be a late inning option. Former prospects Jeurys Familia, and Jenry Mejia are recovering from surgeries and may be ready to help in either the bullpen or as a fifth starter. The Mets would do well to find another established veteran closer to join forces with Parnell. How about opening the wallets for a guy like Grant Balfour or Fernando Rodney?


Bench


With the non tender of Justin Turner and Omar Quintanilla, you could expect Josh Satin and Wilmer Flores to step into utility roles. Zach Lutz is also a candidate to make the team as a back up infielder. Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Matt Den Dekker are very good defensive outfielders who may stick depending on if the Mets deal a Lagares. 

 

2013 New York Mets Hitting Stats by Position

Split           G GS   PA   AB   R   H  2B 3B HR RBI SB CS  BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS   
as C             162  658  593  60 130  21  0 22  84  1  2  51 160 .219 .288 .366 .654  
as 1B            162  694  582  77 136  33  0 15  59  8  3 102 171 .234 .353 .368 .721  
as 2B            162  729  689  91 195  40  5 15  81 18  3  33 100 .283 .316 .421 .736  
as 3B            162  716  634  81 184  35  6 20  80 17  4  71 130 .290 .365 .459 .824  
as SS            162  653  586  49 126  23  2  3  40  5  1  55 105 .215 .285 .276 .561  
as LF            162  730  639  83 155  32  5 14  51 37  8  75 137 .243 .327 .374 .701  
as CF            162  680  632  58 140  29  6 13  66 12  6  35 165 .222 .267 .348 .615  
as RF            162  705  640  78 160  31  7 23  92  9  6  49 182 .250 .308 .428 .736  
as DH             10   43   41   4  11   2  0  1   5  1  0   2  13 .268 .302 .390 .693  
as P             152  337  296  11  34   6  1  0  15  3  0  12 140 .115 .155 .142 .297   
as PH            137  263  228  27  47  11  0  4  20  1  1  27  82 .206 .300 .307 .607 


2013 New York Mets Hitting Stats by Place in Batting Order

 Split        G GS   PA   AB   R   H  2B  3B  HR RBI SB CS  BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG    OPS 
Batting 1st   186 18  754  686  81 160  34  5  4  46 43  8  54 132 .233 .293 .315 .608  
Batting 2nd   204 18  735  681  86 190  43  6 13  76 15  4  44 114 .279 .324 .417 .741  
Batting 3rd   182 18  719  650  83 183  35  6 24  77 22  3  62 130 .282 .348 .465 .812  
Batting 4th   191 18  705  621  83 156  32  3 22  80  8  4  69 180 .251 .332 .419 .751  
Batting 5th   219 18  692  600  79 139  27  4 19  80  7  5  80 163 .232 .327 .385 .712    
Batting 6th   234 18  681  605  64 124  19  1 22  72  5  6  61 177 .205 .286 .349 .634  
Batting 7th   210 18  660  590  55 168  35  3 18  84  6  5  54 146 .285 .347 .446 .792  
Batting 8th   214 18  644  577  51 109  20  2  4  45  4  0  55 127 .189 .262 .251 .513  
Batting 9th   705 18  617  549  37  89  18  2  4  33  4  0  33 215 .162 .216 .224 .440  
Bat1-2non-P   352 36 1489 1367 167 350  77 11 17 122 58 12  98 246 .256 .308 .366 .674     
Bat3-6non-P   714 72 2793 2473 309 602 113 14 87 309 42 18 272 649 .243 .324 .406 .730 
Bat7-9non-P   608 37 1588 1423 130 332  67  6 26 147 14  5 130 349 .233 .301 .344 .645  

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