I WANT A DO OVER!! BY Tom Brennan
Remember when you were a kid and were playing outside and you used to have “do overs”?
Well, I want a do over: I want Daniel Murphy back.
Last year, I wrote repeatedly in the fall to re-sign Murph, trade Duda, put Murph at first base.
Why? Better and much more consistent hitter and one who had finally tapped into his power game. One who, when (not if) David Wright went down for a months-long injury, could step right in at third base.
Ownership was stupid, plain and simple – enamored with saving a few mill in 2016, and getting a draft pick, when Duda (57 homers in 2014 and 2015) could have gotten us nice prospects from some team.
Everyone chose to ignore the evidence: Murphy’s new hitting prowess.
In August and September and the playoffs (against severely excellent pitchers), Murphy had 257 at bats, hit .303, with 21 doubles, 2 triples, 15 homers, and 48 RBIs. I tried to convince people he was a new Murph, new and improved.
My friends all agreed. The Wilpons and Sandy did not, sadly.
Duda in 2016, pre-injury, was the same old inconsistent guy who’d not hit well in the clutch, frustrate you watching him take pitches, and hit occasional long homers. Whoopee.
Murphy in 2016?
Hitting .352, 38 XBHs in 293 at bats in 76 games, MVP candidate.
But notice: his stats are remarkably similar to those from August through the last game of the WS in 2015.
So, for the heck of it, let's combine those 2015 and 2016 #’s: 550 at bats (less than a full season), 41 doubles, 6 triples, 29 homers, 101 RBIs, .330.
And the fans deliriously chant DE AZA, DE AZA. Just have to double de Aza's .165 average and you get (yes) Daniel Murphy's .330. Easy breezy.
Oh, I know - $30 million a year over 6 years was a lot to pay a guy like Murphy. Wait….What? He only cost $37.5 million for 3 years??
AND THE METS SAID NO???????
And, of course, to compound the fracture, he goes not to the AL, not to the Western Division, but to our division rivals.
We keep him, we’re back in the World Series. We don’t? The Nats may get there.
All we can hope for, Mr. Wilpon might say , is meaningful post-July 4 BB.
I want a do over. Don’t you?