(Anderson) Hernandez, who was acquired from the Nationals on Aug. 6 for minor-league infielder Greg Veloz, has demonstrated he doesn’t have the aptitude to play shortstop at the major-league level—even if he could handle second base. The likelihood is the Mets re-sign Alex Cora as the backup middle infielder, which would leave Hernandez and Wilson Valdez as extras who could potentially fit at Triple-A.
When New York Mets outfielder Nick Evans began his Major League career in May 2008 he did not do so quietly. In Evans' first game in the Majors, he went 3-for-4 with three doubles and two RBIs against the Rockies. His performance had Mets fans hoping that they have found a cornerstone outfielder for years to come. In 2009, however, Evans has not been much of a factor. He has struggled throughout the year, and over the course of the past month has seen his plate appearances disappear, getting just three at-bats since Sept. 12 and only 64 on the year. On the season, the 23-year-old from Phoenix has hit just .219 with seven RBIs and one home run, a far cry from what was expected of him when the season began
Jerry Manuel has received enough assurances from Mets ownership to be confident this atrocious season won't cost him his job. But he also knows the unspoken truth about his situation. With only one more year on his contract, Manuel won't survive another losing season. And if the Mets get off to a slow start in 2010, he'll be on the hot seat in a hurry. "I know how this particular situation works," Manuel said Monday. "I understand that. It'll be important for us to hit the ground running playing good baseball and giving a feeling that there is a chance of a championship. That has to be established early. I understand that. "I'll be fighting that battle, but at the same time I know I have to have a team in position to get off and play well."
The Mets have struggled all season to find a second lefthanded reliever to pair with Feliciano, although they continue to try to identify southpaws for that role. Lefthander Mike Antonini, who primarily pitched as a starter in Double-A Binghamton this season, should get a look in spring training because he has an above-average changeup, which he consistently throws for strikes
Top 20 NY-Penn Prospects:
1. Ryan Westmoreland, of, Lowell (Red Sox)
2. Alexander Colome, rhp, Hudson Valley (Rays)
3. Arodys Vizcaino, rhp, Staten Island (Yankees)
4. Sebastian Valle, c, Williamsport (Phillies)
5. Jason Kipnis, of, Mahoning Valley (Indians)
6. Victor Black, rhp, State College (Pirates)
7. Ramon Benjamin, lhp, Jamestown (Marlins)
8. Arquimedes Caminero, rhp, Jamestown (Marlins)
9. Alex Wilson, rhp, Lowell (Red Sox)
10. Kyle Lobstein, lhp, Hudson Valley (Rays)
11. Anthony Hewitt, 3b, Williamsport (Phillies)
12. Adam Warren, rhp, Staten Island (Yankees)
13. Destin Hood, of, Vermont (Nationals)
14. Jimmy Paredes, 2b, Staten Island (Yankees)
15. Derrik Gibson, 2b/ss, Lowell (Red Sox)
16. Leandro Castro, of, Williamsport (Phillies)
17. Kyle Conley, of, Batavia (Cardinals)
18. Neil Medchill, of, Staten Island (Yankees)
19. Michael Almanzar, 3b, Lowell (Red Sox)
20. Jim Fuller, lhp, Brooklyn (Mets)
The most glaring hole with the Mets, outside of starting pitching, is what to do with first base. I'm sure Adrien Gonzalez's name will be bantered about this offseason, but the reality is the Mets probably won't be able to get him if they plan on trading for a top notch pitcher. So you have really three options.
Option 1: Do nothing. With this option Daniel Murphy is your 2010 first baseman for better or worse. Maybe you sign a veteran backup/pinch hitter to relieve Murphy on occasion or you resign a guy like Jeremy Reed who's an OF/1B. You're hoping hear that Murphy develops into the player we dream he can be. The free agent market for first baseman is rather thin so you keep Murphy instead of paying big bucks for a Paul Konerko or the often injured Nick Johnson. The Mets would be power weak at first base and have a mediocre glove. Going with this option requires an upgrade in left field to make up for the power drought at first.
Mets right fielder Jeff Francoeur would like to discuss a multiyear deal with the team to buy out his arbitration years, according to Newsday's David Lennon. Francoeur, 26 in January, has a .308/.333/.491 line in 291 plate appearances for the Mets since coming over in the trade with Atlanta.Francoeur is already under team control through 2011. Given the limited sample of playing time, the Mets might be inclined to focus on a 2010 contract. Francoeur earned $3.375MM in '09, and he shouldn't expect a huge raise as a second-year arbitration player for hitting .277/.306/.418 overall. Even if Francoeur offered to sign a two-year, $8MM contract, the Mets would be guaranteeing unnecessary millions.
Think Jeff is regretting turning down that Granderson type deal? Thanks for that, by the way. Jeff fooled the whole city of New York when he went in there with no pressure to perform. Next year he'll be back to the same ol' Jeff, beating himself up over everything that goes wrong and send himself right back to the bottom of the totem pole.
Below is the top 25 Latin American prospects from baseball america and their signing status:
1. Miguel Sano, SS, Dominican Republic - signed with Twins for $3.1 million