Posted by Mack Ade at 8:00 AM
The Mets tendered deals to all eight of their arbitration-eligible players before last Wednesday night’s non-tender deadline. It included SS Ruben Tejada, SP Matt Harvey, 1B Lucas Duda, and RPs Addison Reed Jenrry Mejia, Jeurys Familia, Carlos Torres, and Josh Edgin.
Harvey and Familia were no-brainers here, but the six other players all represent a certain degree of a dice roll.
You know me… I really don’t care how much the Wilpons spend on this team to build a winner. I just want talent, period.
Putting aside mistakes made, drama, and just basic stupidity, the most talented of the six remaining players is Mejia. Curb his drug habit and he easily could have been the Mets closer for the entire 2015 season. I’ve relaxed my initial outrage about this guy and see the tremendous advantage he could bring to this team after the all-star break. The potential of the 7-8-9 lineup of Reed, Mejia, and Familia is, frankly a little mind blowing for lifelong Mets fan.
The tendering of Edgin must mean that the Mets feel he will be fully healed from TJS and return as the Mets LOOGY in 2016. I’ve always liked Edgin, both as a person (always paid me respect as a reporter) and as the close to unhittable (47-appearances, 1.32, 0.91) reliever in 2014.
I’m not exactly how I feel about the Torres decision. Frankly, he’s never done anything for me and I would have thought that the Mets could have come up with some more creative options here (Sean Gilmartin, Erik Goeddel, Hansel Robles, Rafael Montero)
Duda is sort of the elephant on first base. We love him, like, 23% of the time he picks up a bat. I never thought he would ever stat out with a decent batting average; however, he did impress me two years ago with his home run production. I was, and probably still am, an Ike Davis fan, though he really hasn’t panned out. My guess is this tendering is the making a statement that Duda will be the first baseman until Dominic Smith knocks on the door in 2017.
As for Tejada, this is more of a statement for the lack of depth of talent in the Mets infield right now. The loss of Daniel Murphy, Kelly Johnson, and Juan Uribe, added to the delicate condition of David Wright, puts this tendering gun to Sandy Alderson’s head right now. He hasn’t got a decent deal done for a new infielder (No Zo!) yet, so he has to spackle up the foundation with Tejada, who can play both middle infield positions. For now, no paper, Wilmer Flores will be the starting shortstop and backup third baseman, Dilson Herrera will get his shot at the starting second base position, and Tejada will back up both middle infielders.
Be ready my folks. This could be your Mets 25-man infield (add Michael Cuddyer backing up Duda at 1B) come opening day.
Metsiac asked -
Ike Davis was non-tendered today, and is a FA. I wonder if there's merit to offering him a MnL deal to see if he can recover his stroke in Wallyville. Brandon Allen is gone, and Don Smith should start off at Bingo, so there's a spot available if he shows anything.
What's your take?
Mack – Well, Bill… sounds like a plan to me, but what do I know?
Yes, as of today, there is no first baseman on the Las Vegas roster but remember the name Matt Oberste. He’s the 24-year old righty that has played alongside Dominic Smith and could probably handle the AAA pressure.
He’s also no slouch, hitting .301 last season for A+ St. Lucie with a 789-OPS.
I will say this though… for all the reasons members of the front office do not want Wally Backman in Queens, they give him all the credit for getting many kids heats back on straight. If there is anything left in Ike’s game, Backman probably is the guy that could pull it out of him.
So we got this kid knuckler in the system named Mickey Jannis (2015 – A+/AA: 3.55) that probably could do a better job out there on the Binghamton mound if he had a ‘knuckler specialist’ catcher like R.A.Dickey had when he was a Met and won the Cy Young Award.
So Josh Thole was non-tendered this week, making him a free agent… I’m just saying.
Do you honestly think some of the old trend setter owner/GMs wouldn’t try something like this?
There’s been a lot of press written about the surprising non-tendering of former star pitcher Henderson Alvarez. He went 12-7, 2.65 as a 24-year old in 2014 but had to be shut down in 2015 due to shoulder problems. Still, this portion of my post isn’t about him… the Marlins also non-tendered another ex-great pitcher, RP Aaron Crow. Crow, once the 12th pick overall in the 2009 draft (Kansas City) missed all of last season due to TJS. He had signed a $1.975mil contract to pitch for the Marlins in 2015, which never happened. Somebody is going to have the opportunity to sign a really good relief pitcher here (KC – 2011: 57-G, 2.76, 2012: 73-G, 3.48, 2013: 3.38). Crow will pitch 2016 as a 28-year old.
Word, per Buster Olney, is that the going price on Yoenes Cespedes is going down which, hopefully, could be good news for the Mets. It always helps that a player that you are trying to sign was once a member of your team and enjoyed playing for you. The Mets came close in 2015 to going all the way and Cespedes may feel he let the team down with his playoff performance after playing so well in the second half of the season. The Hot Stove League would turn out so much more successful if a deal could be worked out here