The Morning Report - GCL/Rule 5, Rafael Montero, Daniel Murphy, Juan Lagares, The San Diego Padres


Rule 5 Eligible Players from the GCL Mets team - 

    Kevin Canelon, Jose Celas, Jose Encarnacion, Gabriel Feliz, Manuel Hilario, Miquel Leaf, Alvin Maracaro, Flabio Ortega, Natanael Ramos, Alfredo Reyes, Waldo Rodriguez, Lenny Rosario

Terry Collins on using Rafael Montero in the bullpen - 

     "I don't want to go to Spring Training and not have some knowledge of how Montero handles the pen. If he's never done it before, that's a lot to ask from a young man."

      Mack - Well, it sounds like there's a chance that I may be getting my wish.

      There are some of our writers here that feel that Montero doesn't have that one great pitch that would make him a great bullpen pitcher, but I do know he has four excellent pitchers could make him a very successful 'first up' reliever once the starter is being pulled.

I still would have Vic Black, Jeurys Familia, and Jenrry Mejia as my velo guys, but you can't tell me that Montero wouldn't be a better alternative to Carlos Torres.

Forget trades... the Mets simply have too much good pitching, even if Sandy Alderson was successful in dealing off a couple of them. 

Right now, Matt Harvey, Zack Wheeler, and Jacob deGrom line up as the SP 1-3 for this team. Let's assume that Noah Syndergaard isn't traded and does become the SP4 sometime next season. Do you actually see Montero beating out ALL the other guys, like Dillon Gee, Jon Niese, and even Bartolo Colon?

The conversion of Montero to the pen simply makes sense, just like it did for Familia and Mejia.

Ernest Dove asked –

Mack, do you think the Mets will actually send Dilson Herrera down to the end of the bench when Daniel Murphy comes back?

Mack – Hey Ernest.

Yes I do, for a number of reasons, the most important being is the fact that Murphy is an all-star, was leading the league in hits when he was placed on the DL, and it’s his job to lose on his own, not have it taken away for someone who only was called up for emergency reasons.

I love what Herrera has done, and there is a good chance he has already proved that he is a capable replacement for Murphy someday, but the great part about depth is that no one has to be in a hurry. The Mets now look set at second base for the remainder of the decade.

I would want to give Murphy every opportunity to lead the league in hits even if it is only an outside chance. It also would give the Mets a chance to showcase him some more before the off-season trading season starts.

It doesn’t look like a long term extension is an option anymore for Murphy, therefore, Sandy Alderson must move in the direction of getting the maximum return for him via a trade.


Let’s face it… playing baseball in September when there’s no chance of making the playoffs really sucks, but it does give a team a chance of experimenting for the future by inserting certain players into different lineup or position situations. One example could be using Dilson Herrera on second base. Another would be Rafael Montero out of the pen. But the best one this fall could be the placement of Juan Lagares into the leadoff position and turning the green light on for his steal attempts.

Lagares is getting very close to being classified as an all-star in this game and doing all he does while hitting .280+ as the future Mets leadoff man just might do the trick.
I used to sometimes miss Carlos Gomez and the potential he brought to this game and position. Then I simply became pissed when he blossomed (late) and he no longer was a member of the Mets. But that’s all in the past now.

Lagares gives me everything I loved in Gomez but, more important, I have never felt so comfortable having someone play centerfield for the Mets before. I know in my heart that, if a ball is hit to centerfield, and it has a chance to be caught, it will be by this guy. He’s that good out there.

Now, the added addition of his leading off and becoming a steal threat is just icing on the cake.

We continue in our series at looking at each team, who their key players are all positions the Mets are looking to improve in (left field, shortstop, prospect relief pitching) and the chance of a future deal either through a trade or free agent signing.
Today, we look at the San Diego Padres.

According to Cot[i], the Padres 2014 salaries were $90,636,600, the same range as the Mets.

There are long term contracts here, but none considered out of the question to absorb into your organization. RPP Joaquim Benoit has one more year (2015) left at $8mil… LF/RF Seth Smith (12-HR, 42-RBI, .279) is due $6mil in 2015 and $6.75mil in 2016… RF Wil Venale (.221) has 2015 left at $4.25mil… CF Cameron Maybin (.242) is due $7.1mil in 2015 and $8.1mil in 2016.

Chris Denorfia had stepped in for the oft-injured Maybin; however, he was traded in July to Seattle for minor league OF Abraham Almonte.

Only 2B Jedd Gorko has an extended contract ($35,5109mil through 2019), but it is highly back-ended with payouts of $2mil in 2015, $4mil in 2016, and $6mil in 2017.

Everth Cabrera (.232) was their starting shortstop until he landed on the DL. His replacement is ex-UT/3B, Alexi Amarista, who may get a longer look now since Cabrera is now on the Padres shit list after being arrested Wednesday after driving while high on weed.

Free agents ready to depart at the end of the season are RHP Josh Johnson ($8mil) and RHP Tim Stauffer ($1.6mil).

Key prospect in the organization to target would be OF Hunter Renfroe, who hit 21-HR/75-RBI this past season at the A+/AA level.

Mack projection – San Diego is a tough team to predict.  It looks on the surface that they have their outfield tied up to some reasonable contracts, but none of these guys seem to hit at any decent level anymore. What if the Padres wanted to promote their prospect Renfroe to a starter and trade you one of their contacts? Why would you do this?

Lastly, they have no depth in their system at shortstop and now their current one is high in the drunk tank.

IMO… This looks like another team the Mets should take a pass on.


Thomas Brennan said...

I agree, reluctantly, that Murphy should play, for the reasons you outline. Also, there is still the faintest of chances that the wild card is in play - reel off 10 straight (keyed of course by Grandy) and see what happens.

Dilson is the future. I'd try, once the Wild Card hopes really are completely snuffed out, to put Flores at 3B for a few games and Dilson at SS. Too many games left for Herrera to just sit.

I really believe Matz will be ready mid-2015 and depending on pennant race, Niese could go then.

I love Lagares playing daily, but I want to see Dekker play too. And Kirk deserves time. Now that Grandy is hot, he'll be in there virtually every day. I'd sit Lagares a few, and play an all lefty OF vs. some tough righties - but again, only after the Wild Card hopes die.

I am very disappointed Jack Leathersich did not get called up. He had a decent season and deserved a peek. 93 K's in 54 innings (15.5 per 9) and a 3.31 ERA.

Dallas said...

Tom, if you take out any player it better not be Lagares. Lagares and Degrom are the reasons I watch this team this year. If you believe in ESPN's WAR stat he has been the 5th best player in the NL. The 4 players ahead of him have 140 more at bats...and he just seems to keep getting better.

Mack, yesterday you talked about Mets averaging 5-6 runs a game they will win 100+. I agree with this because the top scoring team this year is only averaging 4.8 runs a game (Angels). You would be very hard pressed to average that kind of run production without getting two or three of the best hitters in the game added to the roster.

We have to watch how much we over rate our pitchers too (Gee, Niese, Colon). There are 72 qualified starters with an ERA 4.0 or less.

Hobie said...

Out of Left Field Dept:

When Murphy comes back, play him occasionally (if not more) at 3B. If successful it can (a) only increase his value in the off-season; (b) prompt a thought of having DW chase some fly balls in LF/RF over the winter; or even the unthinkable (c) entertain a trade of the Captain.

John Zozo said...


I would leave Montero in as a starter, his trade value is higher if he stays in that position and produces. He in my opinion is the first one shipped out from all these young guys. So hopefully he puts in a good start it two and his stock rises again.
For the same reason start Murphy as well to build up his stock.
I said in the beginning of the season to bring in Rickey Henderson to work with Lagares on his steals, like they did a few years ago, and still hope they do it next spring training.

Thomas Brennan said...

Hi Dallas
I truly only meant a few games for Lagares. I think all these guys should sit a minimum of 10 games a year, and 15 might be better, to avoid injury. Too often you hear of guys play every day, wear down and slump. Unless a guy is going for a milestone (e.g., Murphy with his 200 hit target until he got hurt, probably due to lack of rest) or in a pennant race, I'd sit everyone that much. There are no Cal Ripkens.

I'd rather see Lagares sit 2 games between now and year end to avoid a hammy pull or something - get everyone healthy leaving the clubhouse after game 162.

I recall Willie Mays collapsing from exhaustion a few times. And the Mets in 1969 were aided by a wilting Cubs team impacted by fatigue.

But I love Lagares out there as much as anyone. Mack (perhaps) will recall my prediction pre-season that Lagares might hit .280 now that his major league adjustment was past and that and his glove would remind me (us?) of a young Clemente. Clemente has to start 150 games!

Mack Ade said...

Zozo -

Well, Montero will start at least 2 more times... maybe more than that

Mack Ade said...

Zozo -

Well, Montero will start at least 2 more times... maybe more than that

Mack Ade said...

Dallas -

we do have our pitching, don't we?

Reese Kaplan said...


They missed the boat on trading Wright when he was in decline but still had the rest of the league similarly fooled that he could recover. Instead we overpaid for him in years (though the annual rate is painful, not unreasonable for what he had accomplished). Now we're stuck with him until 2020.

Mack Ade said...

Hobie -

out of respect for the players, I wouldn't be moving them around by position anymore this season.

Mack Ade said...

Thomas -

you're going to wait until the Wild Card race is over ????

Now, HERE is a real fan...

Robb said...

you send Dilson down, bc binghampton is in the playoffs and he can still get at bats as soon as murphy is activated. He got a taste. its a good thing.

Thomas Brennan said...

Mack, after looking back at some of those great games in 1969, and seeing what they did then, it would be a total fluke to get back in the Wild Card, but win 10 straight and see what happens then.

Grandy's done nothing all year, essentially - until the last few games. Wright is hitting again. You could make the case for a good winning streak.

This team is due for a nice 10 game winning streak - been a long time since the last one. Winning streaks shrink standings deficits.

I'm not holding my breath, but then there was 1969...

Reese Kaplan said...


But a ten game losing streak might improve the team more as it could usher out the incumbent skipper.

Steve from Norfolk said...


We HAVE won 5 of our last 6 - stranger things have happened!

Steve from Norfolk said...

I forgot, Tom -

DD does play almost as good a CF as Lagares. Stick Capt. Kirk in LF, and we'll be fine.

Thomas Brennan said...

Cant argue with you there, Reese. We either get super hot and win the Wild Card or lose a lot, get a better pick, and a new manager. 9-9 from here on out is not the answer!
Steve, after seeing so many unreal catches from Lagares, and throws too, I am sure Dekker is above average defensively but Lagares is just superlative. Dekker has a very high bar to clear compared to Lagares.

Mack's Mets © 2012