Posted by Mack Ade at 8:00 AM
Mike Puma @NYPost_Mets - Was told the Mets expect to address lefty relief at the winter meetings. Could be trade or FA. No shot at signing Andrew Miller.
Good. The team needs another lefty and more than Dana Eveland can bring to the table. Frankly, ‘elbow inflammation’ shouldn’t be enough to tarnish a great 2014 season where the 30-year old went 1-1, 2.63, 1.10, 27.1-IP, 27-K in 30 appearances.
There must be more to this injury than we know. It’s hard for me to believe that Sandy Alderson is going to find a 2.63, 1.10 lefty out there during the winter meetings.
Kevin emailed -
Mack, Your post on an expansion draft got me thinking. If there was to be an expansion draft in 2015, who would the Mets protect. I think this would make a great discussion post during a slow beginning to the offseason.
Mack – Yeah, I had hoped that yesterday’s post would have generated this kind of discussion but it didn’t.
I guess the first question would be how would the commissioner set up the parameters of the draft. How many players do you get to protect before ‘round one’… how many do you get to pull off your submitted list once your first pick was taken.
I think the question should be asked in reverse, meaning, who would be the players they wouldn’t protect.
My guess is Bartolo Colon and Dillion Gee would head up this list and, for salary reasons, you could see Daniel Murphy and/or Jonathan Niese.
Past this, the process gets complicated. Eight or nine affiliates mean eight or nine cities and stadiums, no less players to play there.
Maybe the 27-man roster is a better idea.
It was interesting to see (so far) that other teams are signing more of the players released by the Mets (example: Alan Dykstra, Josh Satin) than visa versa. My guess is that the Mets direction is to promote their players from within and fill these predominately AAA slots with last year’s AA players.
This is, in my opinion, a very good sign. No filler here.
Justin Upton to Seattle speculation[i] –
As for the Braves, John Hart gets what he wants and what the team would realistically need since the blow up of this team has begun, a very young starting pitcher under team control. Taijuan Walker is not going to help the Braves contend in 2015, 2016, or even beyond that with their current situation of little-to-no offense, but there is potential value in his team control, which extends until 2021. A nice-sized market can rebound from this dismantling quicker than others, and while the next few years could be rough, Walker could be a valued arm for the team in 2018 through the remainder of the team’s control, as they could once again become contenders. On the other hand, Walker could very much become a bust and leave the franchise in an even worse situation, but that is always the risk in obtaining a prospect.
It is a gamble for both sides to make such a trade, but one worth taking. The Mariners get what they want in a likely playoff team and the Braves get what they want in young, controllable starting pitching. Do not sit in fear and be paralyzed by analysis all the time, or at least at this time.
So, where do you play Hanley Ramirez?[ii]
So you're choosing between first and left. Ramirez's overall rating is closer to the average first-base rating. On the other hand, his two relative strengths are speed and arm. First basemen have little use for speed. They do throw sometimes, but not far, so accuracy's more important. While Ramirez doesn't have an average left fielder's first step or instincts, plays take longer to develop, so he might be able to compensate for some of that with his speed. And though people question his throwing accuracy, he'd have more time to set in the outfield than he has in the infield. This might even be enough to make him a capable right fielder, but for the time being, left seems acceptable.
Cubs Den[iii] -
Buster Olney ranks his Top 10 shortstops in the majors and has Starlin Castro at #10 (Insider required). In his write up, Olney states "I have to admit that as I started this, I thought Castro would be ranked somewhere in the range of best six to eight shortstops. But rival evaluators want to see more maturation in his defense, more consistency; he scored only slightly higher than Hanley Ramirez last year in DRS (Defensive Runs Saved)." That's cherry picking the stats a bit as Castro was significantly better in UZR/150, but in these rankings defense was definitely prioritized more than it was in the previous positional rankings. Plus I question any list that thinks Jhonny Peralta is the second best shortstop in the game.