Mack’s Morning Report – 3-3-16 – Michael Cuddyer, Noah Syndergaard, Wilmer Flores, T.J. Rivera


Good morning.

Injury update - Erik Goeddel was cleared by doctor and will begin throwing  in a few days.

I didn’t know this –

Ken Rosenthal ‏- FYI: Major-league players do not get suspended for marijuana use. Minor leaguers get treatment for first offense, 50 games for second.

From the NY Post –

          According to an industry source, Michael Cuddyer received a buyout valued in the $2 million to $3 million range to terminate his contract with the Mets in December. The veteran outfielder was due $12.5 million in the final season of a backloaded two-year deal ...

                   Mack – Could anyone really have a problem with this?

          I originally thought the Cuddyer signing was a good one, but it quickly turned sour. Still, he remained a positive factor in the clubhouse and, frankly, he didn’t have to step aside financially.

          I consider Cuddyer a baseball gentle man for participating in this move.

David Wright on Noah Syndergaard

                   “Noah has been fantastic. The maturity that he transitioned from — that prospect status to working his way up to that kind of elite status — for that transition to happen on the field is incredible, but the transition in the clubhouse from a young, somewhat immature kid to what he brings to the table now is amazing. There are some people who just can’t handle it. I’ve seen plenty who can’t handle it. There are a lot of young players who feel they have it all figured out, but he takes constructive criticism very well.’’

Mack – Wright was obviously referring to the infamous ‘stop eating and get the hell back out in the dugout’ incident last year.

I accredit a large part of Syndergaard’s maturity to the other starters that seem to all have banded together as Knights of Shining Armor.

 Kristie Ackert on Wilmer Flores

          Thursday the Mets will start Flores at third base in their Grapefruit League opener against the Nationals in Viera. He will get starts at both spots and if he needs more work will also play those positions in minor-league games.

Flores did drills at third base one day last week learning from Wright and the next he was at first getting reps and tips with Duda. Working at third, Flores’ only issue was remembering to face the shortstop to relay signs. At first, where he only played a handful of games in the minor leagues, Flores said it’s a little bit more of an adjustment.

The Mets need Flores to find his comfort zone at first — and third — quickly.
Mack – Playing defense has never come naturally for Flores and this sometimes, third, sometimes first, and once in a while short think could turn out to be a real defensive cluster fuck.

Playing each position is a complete different animal without even taking in consideration the throwing angles and speeds to first base.

I hope for Flores’ sake his bat can carry him here.

 Anthony DiComo   on T.J. Rivera –

                  Few have done it better than Rivera, whose .318 average over five Minor League seasons includes little power -- fewer than five home runs per campaign -- and below-average plate discipline, but plenty of hits. An undrafted free agent, Rivera hooked on with the Mets in 2011 and batted .301 that season. Three years later, he made it to Double-A Binghamton, announcing his arrival with a .358 mark at the plate. That success spilled into last season, which saw Rivera hit .341 at Binghamton, earn a promotion to Triple-A Las Vegas, then celebrate with a .306 average in 54 games.

Mack – It’s funny how the Mets press are now using the word ‘prospect’ when they talk about the undrafted Rivera.

My guess is his high end would still be as a AAAA player, mainly due to his limited pop and even more limited defense at all positions played. Nothing against his .300+ minor league hitting, but we’ve seen this before.

There are only 30 teams in major league baseball That’s room for 30 starters at each position from everybody that plays this game in the entire world.


Thomas Brennan said...

Maybe Cuddyer, who has clearly got a head on his shoulders, has opportunities opening up outside of baseball that help him not grub for the last dollar. Good for him, no matter what. Class guy.

"Major-league players do not get suspended for marijuana use. Minor leaguers get treatment for first offense, 50 games for second." Maybe that is because the game is played on grass? Just wonderin'...and too bad Mejia wasn't just a pot head.

Flores will be fine IMO - no one works harder. He's not being asked to play the OF.

I just saw the very good,inspiring, and highly recommended underdog movie Eddie the Eagle last night...maybe someday, we'll be watching the TJ Rivera Underdog Story.

Mack Ade said...

Tom -

But every gain (Rivera) will come at someone else's expense (???)

Thomas Brennan said...

Very True, Mack, and Rivera, Muno, Cecchini, and Reynolds will be duking it out like Cruz and Rubio to see who might squeeze out a 25th spot on this roster - but absent any injuries, it will be hot and crowded Vegas for the foursome.

Brian Joura said...

Excellent point about the potential disaster about asking Flores to fill numerous positions. I've never understood the desire to turn Flores into a Super Sub. He's not a good defensive player and whatever value he has will be because his bat can play at this level.

I laughed about the first commenter's line about Mejia.

Ernest Dove said...

I feel like our beloved Mets and their front office continues to take for granted the stud rotation and it is bleeding into these types of decisions like our new SS, 2B, Yo staying at CF and wilmer as the super sub.
Im going to support all of these decisions but since im a mets fan/newyorker/italian I will be ranting at a later date if things go wrong......
Either way GO METS !!!!

Mack Ade said...

Brian - the first requirement of a utility infielder is excellent defense in late innings... go figure

Hobie said...


I would have thought the first requirement for a UT INF is "utility" To me that's adequate (albeit, the better the better) defense at multiple positions and and enough of a bat to to ocassionally start.

Wilmer is ideal for that. (I still think be summer he will be the starting SS though)

James Preller said...

I agree on Wilmer as an excellent super sub candidate. Versatility is the key here. It's not to be confused with the role of "defensive specialist." I don't like him at 1B this year, since I'd prefer not to overload him with new defensive challenges.

I like Rivera as a potential 24/25th man. Not my money, but $3 million for Tejada seems a little nutty to me.

Sandy has a lot of fat on this year's payroll. A lot invested in insurance policies. We will see.

Anonymous said...

I can see a movie in the future about TJ Rivera. True underdog who will hopefully make it to the top! nobody more deserving for a shot than him.

Thomas Brennan said...

Right on cue, TJ got a hit today

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