Mack’s Hot Stove Thoughts – 12-9-15 – July Pen, Ben Zobrist,


Good morning.

I said earlier this week (Monday) as a comment on Chris’ Monday Morning Report that I was going to wait out the Hot Stove week and not respond to what the Mets either do, or not do, while meeting with the rest of the teams at the winter meetings in Nashville.
It didn’t take long (Monday morning) for VP John Ricco to gather the gaggle together and pass on a bunch of tribble for everyone to send out to the fans, including the speculation that it didn’t look like the Mets had a chance with bringing back OF Yoenes Cespedes (due to his salary demands in a deal).

Was it necessary to say this at this point of the winter meetings? Is this posturing or just another Ricco moment?

I also mentioned earlier this week that I believe the Mets will wait until mid-season to fully replenish their bullpen. This seemed to work well last season and I wouldn’t be surprised if you don’t see the finalization of this pen once Zack Wheeler returns as a starter. What would I do? Well, I would convert Jon Niese into a pen that already had a returning Jenrry Mejia. I also would have already converted Rafael Montero to join Sean Gilmartin, Addison Reed, Josh Edgin, Jeurys Familia, and Hansel Robles. There’s a lot of talent on this list and it does make one stop and think before committing any new money to an additional reliever during this off-season.

And lastly, The Mets determined early on in this off-season that their prime target was Ben Zobrist. Then, all of a sudden, the Cubs and manager Joe Madden supposedly came out of the woodwork and closed a 4-year deal with the ex-Kansas City star.

I’m really not sure what I feel about this right now. I never wanted to commit this kind of money to someone that is going to turn 100 years old in four years, but it would have been nice to have the kind of talent Zobrist would have brought to the infield immediately.

I believe the blueprint this off-season will mirror the one developed at mid- season last year. A basic small list of retooling moves. An additional centerfielder and a possible addition to the pen.

Events that started in November and culminated last night have created a situation in which your old second baseman is gone, your new one just signed with Chi-Raq, the rookie is ready but green, your two shortstops have broken a leg and an ankle and the guy I wanted to replace all of them is now in the Bronx.

A bad night but a place we can build off of.

First of all, we know as a fan now that the Mets management will commit big free agent dollars if they can match up with the right person. It may no longer be in the middle infield this season but we can begin preventing these kind of problems by developing your own talent through the system. I’ll say this for around the tenth time this off-season… I just wish the Mets would give Herrera one full season in Queens to prove his value at second base.

Shortstop may be more of a challenge now. A lot of weight, excuse the pun, will be placed on the doctor’s reports on both Tejada and then Flores. Past that, team officials make lightning decisions on the projectibility of guys like Asdrubal Cabrera, Clint Barmes, Ian Desmond, Jimmy Rollins, and Stephen Drew.

On to Thursday.


Anonymous said...

Does anyone know the asking price for Brett Lawrie
He can play 3rd and 2nd ,probably even LF
Lots of energy as a bench player, with some pop

Anonymous said...

How about Dalton pompey from Toronto for Niese
The guy has speed, and can play CF,was a top prospect
made Toronto opening day line up last season

Thomas Brennan said...

Mack, all your writing efforts on Castro and he becomes a Damn Yankee? That has to be frustrating.

Mack Ade said...

Tom -

Cubs moved quick and decisive. You have to appreciate that.

Anonymous said...

This is silly......Zobrist would have been a nice addition, but he was costly in terms of salary and the length of the commitment (especially at his age). Plus, he would have blocked Dilson for the foreseeable future, which is a bad move, IMO.

The best part, is the whining taking place in the media today.....how can we "lose" something that we didn't have in the first place? Sure, Zobrist was our top target, but the Cubs present a nice package, to include familiarity with Joe Maddon.

Morons (like Matt Cerrone of late) are now saying the Mets "look bad", because of this outcome. The hype was media created in the first place, so when it turns out to be inaccurate, it is now on the team? BS!

Whatever.....we are the defending NL Champions, with a killer pitching staff and a bright future!

bob gregory said...

The Mets do look bad:

but not because Zobrist chose the to go to the Cubs.

The Mets look really bad for assessing their own team and determining the most important thing they needed to do this offseason in order to improve was to target a 35 yr old second baseman that could play multiple positions

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