Posted by Stephen Guilbert at 12:00 PM
Anthony DiComo for mlb.com: "From what I can gather, Mets have done due diligence on Cuban SS Yoan Moncada, but don't view him as a realistic option given their budget".
Well that's predictably infuriating.
A bit over a week ago, I penned an article about the need for the Mets to pursue Moncada. In it, I said, "The Mets should be in on Moncada. And I don't mean being interested, doing their due diligence, then, knowing the price rage, predictably bowing out". I had no idea that only days later, that is exactly what MLB is reporting the Mets are going to do. I included the word "predictably" for a reason. This team has become completely absent in nearly every free agent or big international player for half a decade now.
I excused so many of these misses because of the length of contracts handed out, concerns over player health or true value, or because of the lack of need for a rebuilding team. However, if DiComo's sources are correct, this is an inexcusable non-action for a team that needs someone like Moncada.
I get it--60-80 million (or more, perhaps) is crazy money for a soon-to-be 20-year-old with no experience against major league pitching. There is that chance that Moncada amounts to little as a professional player in the states. However, given the unanimity over his ability and projection as an impact bat for any team who gets him and given his tool set, how can the Mets not at least hold a workout and bid on this guy?
I chatted with Mack about this tonight and he will include a section on this in an upcoming report but he did bring something to mind: Hopefully this is not the case of a beat reporter trying to kick the beehive of Mets fans into a venomous frenzy over this for the sake of viewership and clicks. While it would work (I mean, listen to me), it is also unfair to a fan base who has watched player after player go make other teams better while the Mets struggle for relevance. However, if DiComo's sources are legitimate, this signifies the continued impotence of a team unable to infuse the right talent into its team. Moncada, no matter how you look at it and no matter which scout you listen to, is absolutely the right talent.
Yoan Moncada has plus-plus speed. The Mets really need speed.
Yoan Moncada has plus power. The Mets need power.
Yoan Moncada has positional versatility, might be a shortstop, and many think he would make an outstanding outfielder. The Mets could really use a shortstop and an outfielder with his bat and speed would be almost as good.
Yoan Moncada will not be a crippling second generation contract.
Yoan Moncada does not cost the Mets a draft pick.
Yoan Moncada does not cost the Mets minor league players. Or major league players. Or any players of any kind.
Yoan Moncada costs dollars. Lots of them.
I have sat content with the rebuild and the reduced payroll as this team rebuilds. We are very close to being a playoff team and a player like Moncada is a difference-maker in the lineup. I cannot accept a payroll in the bottom third in baseball and ownership that tells its fans that "there is no payroll restriction" while pointing the finger at a GM who has stated that the right players aren't out there.
I have a number of friends who are Yankee fans. I am sure most of us do. Some of them already talk about their "future infield" as if Moncada is theirs. And why shouldn't they? They know that they have a great chance at getting him. I want that optimism and I want to know that if a can't-miss guy comes around (and I do believe Moncada is a can't-miss talent), that the Mets would do everything within reason to get him.
I hope DiComo is wrong. Keep an eye out for whether or not the Mets hold a workout for Moncada. That will tell us if DiComo is on the money or misinformed.