Matt Gad - HOT STOVE: Cuddyer, Moving In The Fences (Again), Duda headed to Japan, and other news and notes
Posted by Matt Gad at 12:00 PM
The World Series came to an end last week, with the San Francisco Giants coming out on top in seven games. The Royals, who crushed the Orange & Black the previous night in a Game 6 by a final score of 10-0, fell victim 3-2. Kansas City could have tied the game on an inside-the-park home run late in the 9th inning, as the Giants completely botched it twice, but the runner held up at third base, deciding not to run the risk of being tagged out to lose the World Series at a play at the plate.
Now that the Fall Classic has come to an end, it is officially time to start to get cracking on the early Hot Stove topics, and what's going on with the Mets organization. There have been rumors that New York is interested in going after outfielder Michael Cuddyer, who is 35 and one of David Wright's best friends in the league. Wright selected Cuddyer as one of the members for the N.L's Home Run Derby team back in the summer of 2012 when Citi Field played host to the Derby, All-Star Game, and all the other festivities, including the infamous Celebrity Softball Game, which featured comedian Kevin James, and star softball pitcher Jennie Finch. Cuddyer, who is now a free agent after spending time with Colorado most recently, would fit well in the Mets system, and finally give them an everyday corner outfielder to pair with Curtis Granderson. With the acquisition of Cuddyer, the Mets outfield, which also comprises of Gold-glove worthy centerfielder Juan Lagares, would look very strong (at least on paper).
Last year, the Mets made a splash, inking Granderson and [Bartolo] Colon to four and two-year deals, respectively. The Mets are keen on trading Colon, and possibly another starting pitcher such as Dillon Gee. It seems fitting they would try keep Jonathan Niese, the only left-handed starter in Queens. The next potential lefty starter is currently in the minor-leagues in Jack Leathersich, who will be at Triple-A Las Vegas this season. There is no word yet on whether he will or will not be invited to the major league Spring Training complex in Port. St Lucie, Fla. in late February.
The Mets' future at shortstop is also up-in-the-air. It seems as if the Mets no longer have an intention of going with Tejada, and Wilmer Flores played the bulk of games at short down the stretch in 2014. Throughout the season, other names, such as Arizona's Chris Owings, the Cubs' Starlin Castro or Addison Russell, or perhaps another international free agent. It seems as if the club will retain 2B Daniel Murphy, at least to start the season, and keep Dilson Herrera in Triple-A for some more seasoning. Herrera is expected in Port. St Lucie this spring, along with Flores.
The Mets moved their conditioning program from Michigan to Florida starting this year, and are also currently re-adjusting the fences, Lucas Duda will be part of Major League Baseball's Japan tour later this winter as well, which includes a week of games.
One of the future Mets was selected to the Arizona Fall Stars' All-Star Game on November 1, in shortstop Matt Reynolds.
The next key date for the offseason is November 4, when the Gold Gloves are announced, which can be seen on ESPN2. Lagares is a prime candidate for an N.L selection in centerfield. And on November 11-20, the MLB Japan Series will be played, which again will feature Mets rising slugger Lucas Duda.