Reese Kaplan -- Slow Learners in the Front Office

Last year the team struggled mightily whenever it needed some offense, so they turned to AAAA fillers for the roster until they were just about to fall out of contention.  Suddenly they got serious about winning and added Yoenis Cespedes, Tyler Clippard, Addison Reed, Kelly Johnson (for the bench) and Juan Uribe (for the bench).  The rest, as they say, is history.

This year the team is again mired in a mostly barren desert when it comes to offense, yet the club continues to try the same things that have not worked in the past.  Earlier it was Eric Campbell.  This time is Ty Kelly, the Sequel.

In the meantime they have players in AAA like Dilson Herrera, Gavin Cecchini, Brandon Nimmo, Travis Taijeron and Johnny Monell hitting anywhere from .296 to .330, but the guy who flamed out of of four previous organizations as a non-prospect gets the call?

Now I can understand the 40-man roster rationale to some extent.  It's certainly easier to move folks back and forth who are already on it. That partially explains the infatuation with Kelly and Campbell.  It does not explain why, when an outfielder goes on the DL (as did Juan Lagares) and you have an outfielder in AAA hitting a mere .330 with excellent OBP in Nimmo that is on the 40 man roster you go with the guy who was hitting .174 in his granted limited trial up here.

Furthermore, the Mets STILL have not moved either David Wright or Lucas Duda to the 60-day DL, thereby hamstringing themselves in terms of who they can move freely back and forth from the minors.  That, in and of itself, is one thing, but the continual decision to play shorthanded for days at a time rather than make moves is ponderous.  I posted recently the prognosis for ligament damage in a hand, but somehow the Mets yet again banked on a miracle for Lagares.

Here's are some cold, hard facts for Sandy Alderson:

  • David Wright is gone for the year.  Plan accordingly.  Kelly Johnson couldn't start for the last place Braves.  Whisper to your manager that he's a bench piece.
  • Lucas Duda is likely gone for the year.  Plan accordingly.  Loney's a nice bench piece, not a starter.  Find someone.
  • Alejandro De Aza is not getting it done.  John Mayberry produced twice as much and was cut.  Remember?
  • Talent exists outside the US borders, too.  Look in CF, for example.  Now look globally for it.  Yuliesky Gourriel is a free agent and wouldn't take any major/minor league players to put into the orange and blue.  
  • Even if your pitchers throw a shutout it could be an extra inning 0-0 game without SOME offense
  • You're already 5 games back (and only 2.5 ahead of the mediocre Marlins).  Panic City is the next stop on this train


Tom Brennan said...

I always like to disregard stats related to a slow start, and will do so with Nimmo. Yes, he is at .330, but over the last 40 games, he is a much more impressive .380/.650. If de Aza can't get untracked within a week, recognize he has fallen down and can't get up, fire him and bring up Nimmo. Nimmo is past Super 2. No excuse.

Your other points (small letters)? MY "YES MAN" THOUGHTS IN CAPS:

◾David Wright is gone for the year. Plan accordingly. Kelly Johnson couldn't start for the last place Braves. Whisper to your manager that he's a bench piece. YES

◾Lucas Duda is likely gone for the year. Plan accordingly. Loney's a nice bench piece, not a starter. Find someone. YES

◾Alejandro De Aza is not getting it done. John Mayberry produced twice as much and was cut. Remember? YES

◾Talent exists outside the US borders, too. Look in CF, for example. Now look globally for it. Yuliesky Gourriel is a free agent and wouldn't take any major/minor league players to put into the orange and blue. YES, YES, YES. DUDE HIT .500 IN CUBA LAST YEAR

◾Even if your pitchers throw a shutout it could be an extra inning 0-0 game without SOME offense YES

◾You're already 5 games back (and only 2.5 ahead of the mediocre Marlins). Panic City is the next stop on this train YES

Unknown said...

Couldn't have said it better. Head scratching moves seem to be our standard operating procedure and I have no idea why. We were told were going to the WS this year yet we seem to be leaning more toward being "insane" according to Einstien as we continue to do the same things expecting different results. The names mentioned to fill Wright's position sound interesting but I get the reason for waiting till July to see if Flores can fill the bill and I'm certainly not holding my breath waiting for a Gourriel signing even with the backing of Cespedes. The decision to let Murphy walk for a chump change contract when we all knew the precarious situation at 3rd base and the streakiness of Lucas Duda he would have been the perfect fill in considering Sandy spent almost 18 mil. on Bastardo and De Aza both of whom could have been replaced for far less. Now no one could have predicted the monster season he's putting up now but when you think that he is a perfect fit at one of the top 2 positions in the order along with his amazing post season AND him ending up on the Nats he's been the difference between us already.

Tom Brennan said...

Gary, I agree 100% on Murphy. I posted last fall almost daily to sign Murph and trade Duda. You'd get a far more consistent hitter and flexible player, with a fragile 3B most likely needing early replacement. Duda had 57 homers over 2 years, and thus had to have trade value. Net salary cost in 2016 up only several million.

I also felt that Murph figured something out fundamentally late last year to make him a better hitter. I did not expect his current .360/.600, but if I was asked to guess last fall, I'd have guessed at .315/.500.

And letting him go to your division arch-rival is doubling down on stupid. THAT may cost us the playoffs or World Series. No big deal, right? Just the World Series. If we kept DM and traded LD, we'd be up 5 to 7 games right now.

Reese Kaplan said...

I'm amused when I talk to friends who tell me minor league stats don't matter and then turn right around and justify the Kelly promotion by saying, "Well, he was hitting .388 in AAA!" You can't have it both ways. Either minor league stats are meaningful or they're not.

We all know that Taijeron and Rivera get short shrift due to their low draft positions relative to the Gavin Cecchinis and Brandon Nimmos. I get that. I don't agree with it, but I understand the rationale. It may be that the lower draft picks work twice as hard to prove themselves and that work ethic will continue when they get the chance at the next level. Many high draft picks assume the world is theirs on a silver platter.

What I don't get is the parade of AAAA players thrust into starting roles or even bench roles when you don't at least TRY to improve upon what's not working.

Tom Brennan said...

True, Reese, and that .388 AAA hitter hit .226 in AAA last year. So which one shows up in Queens?

Metsiac said...

Re: The Kelly arguments--- The reverse argument exists. I'm one who has posted Kelly's stats, but not to promote his callup; rather as response to those advocating promotions based on Vegas stats. It's a case of "if you want to use the stats, the guy leading the league is the best choice, but the baseball minds see beyond the #s". Don't tell me that TJ and Dilson's stats show they're ready, then say Kelly's don't. It's a double edged sword.

Kelly Johnson was NOT brought in to be a starter, and that was never considered. He's here to provide bench strength, and he's a major upgrade over Soup, Kelly and others.

Your argument re: the 40 is backwards. There's no need to create a vacancy and then find someone to fill it. First you identify the new addition, THEN create the opening. If you 60-day David and or Lucas and fill it, you're hampered if you can add someone from outside. There's no reason why you can't use the 60 at the time you're ready to promote.

Based on last year's moves, there's no reason to believe that Sandy isn't actively looking to add ML talent. But timing is important. The RIGHT players may not yet be available. Making a quick move may mean missing the best move. Act in haste, repent at leisure. Remember the Flores/Wheeler for Gomez plan? If we took it, forget Cespedes for prospects.

Let's give Wilmer the opportunity to show he can be a ML regular before leaping to give up a lot for someone who'll push him to the bench. You've been his biggest supporter, Reese. Have you now given up on him?

Unknown said...

Anyone here open to a phone call or skype call to talk Mets? Just contact me at seagren@verizon.net or 941-925-0667 or just post here. Thanks

Reese Kaplan said...

Wilmer can man one corner spot. Money is a bench piece miscast as a starter. Find a slugger for 1st or 3rd and let Flores take the other spot.

Robb said...


re nimmo, and im a big fan. where is he going to play. are you sitting conforto, cespedes or granderson. you dont call up a guy who needs to play everyday and have him sit on the bench....thats just stupid. its also bad to build trade value or for his development curve

nimmo and dilson, need to play everyday and without fear they wont otherwise they arent coming up, thats how you end up with 4A guys at the back of the lineup. bitch and moan all you want neither is coming up without a starting spot!

If im sandy and this is a bit of long range planning here, I like everyone else is looking at the 2018 offseason. as such I am willing to trade harvey (red soxs, to reload), after this season but preferrably after next. I also know that while Harvey, fernandez and Harper esp are the big names Im saving my 30 mm that year for your new starting 3rd baseman, manny machado.

One thing i will say categorially. Plaweki is not a major league caliber catcher. How much better do the mets pitchers look and pitch with rivera back there. Everyone but Bartolo seems to pitch significantly better with him. If he were hitting maybe it would be worth it, but 225 vs 210 really isnt worth the pitch quality.

also there are no not flawed players, either by, contract, age or ability on the market at the moment. thats why you trade for bench pieces. should have signed Uribe.

Mack Ade said...

One thing...

The Mets 1Bman has been lost for the season... the 2Bman and one of the SS's (Flores) has had bouts with injuries... the 3Bman is gone for the season... the catcher has been on the DL for most of the season... and the LFer and both CFers have had injuries.

That being said, they are only 6 games out of first place against one of the hottest team in baseball and, if the season ended today, they would have the home game for the Wild Card game.

Mack's Mets © 2012