Archive for December, 2014

By Steven InmanSpring 2013 014

The Mets went into the offseason planning on trading one of their starting pitchers along with possibility trading All-Star 2B Daniel Murphy.This would allow the Mets to get new players while keeping payroll around $90-95 million. The Mets were going to use Murphy’s money to afford a starting caliber shortstop. Then the Mets would have a competition in spring training between Dilson Herrera, Wilmer Flores and Matt Reynolds for the starting second base job.

However the Mets never found a shortstop so Daniel Murphy will start the 2015 season with the Mets. Murphy is now the second longest tenured Met on the team, behind only the captain, David Wright.

Murphy will be a free agent after the 2015 season. It appeared as if Murphy would be a goner this winter but that has obviously changed. However if the Mets are out of the race by the All-Star break they could trade Murphy at the trade deadline.

The Mets had interest in a number of free agent shortstops but for a lesser price to what they actually got on the open market. The Mets liked Jed Lowrie in the past but only had interest in him on a one year deal. Lowrie went to the Astros on a three year deal. There were conflicting reports on whether the Mets had interest in Asdrubal Cabrera. Cabrera signed with the Rays on Tuesday. The Mets also showed interest in trade candidates such as the White Sox Alexei Ramirez and the Cubs Starlin Castro. Both Chicago teams have considered themselves contenders and have elected to keep their starting shortstops. Since the Mets didn’t spend on a shortstop they didn’t have to clear Murphy’s salary.

Are the Mets better off with Daniel Murphy or a starting shortstop?

By Steven InmanSpring 2013 014

With less than a week left in 2014, lets go back and look over the most important moments of the 2014 Mets year, on and off the field.

We did this the previous two years. The 2013 post can be found here and the 2012 article can be found here. In case you were living in a cave over the last year here is everything you need to know about the Mets in 2014. There were a lot of positives for the Mets but the team also had a lot of negatives. Here’s the list.

6. Bobby Parnell undergoes Tommy John surgery: Parnell didn’t look right all spring as his velocity was way down in Florida but the Mets elected to put him on the Opening Day roster anyway. Parnell blew the save on Opening Day against the eventual division champion Nationals and was sent for an MRI shortly after that revealed the need for season-ending surgery. The bullpen was a major liability for the Mets for much of the first half after Parnell went down as place holders such as Jose Valverde and Kyle Farnsworth were ineffective as late inning options. Both players were let go midway through the season. The Parnell injury was a major reason the Mets fell in such a large early season hole that they were never able to climb out of. Bobby Parnell will not be ready for Opening Day but for some reason, the Mets elected to pay his arbitration price again.

5. Jacob deGrom win NL Rookie Of the Year: The most pleasant surprise of the 2014 Mets was their

Jacob deGrom was magnificent as a rookie in 2014

Jacob deGrom was magnificent as a rookie in 2014

ninth round pick of the 2010 draft, Jacob deGrom. The right-hander was dominant all season and was easily the Mets best pitcher in 2014. If deGrom can perform as well as a second year player, the Mets rotation should be a force in 2015. DeGrom’s special year was capped off when he was awarded NL Rookie of the Year. Jacob is the first Met to win Rookie of the Year since Doc Gooden in 1984.

4. Mets will bring in the Citi Field Fences once again: In what has become a common discussion in recent years, the Mets have elected to bring in the Citi Field fences yet again. The new dimensions are very similar to Shea Stadium but if the Mets had the money to bring in better hitters, this probably wouldn’t be #4 on our list. The Mets needed to get creative to solve their need for power bats. Regardless David Wright and Curtis Granderson should benefit in 2015 from the more hitter friendly dimensions at Citi Field.

3. Mets sign Michael Cuddyer: The Mets made the first move of the MLB offseason by signing outfielder Michael Cuddyer to a two year contract worth $21 million. Cuddyer will cost the Mets the 15th overall pick in the 2015 draft but will provide a much needed bat to the middle of the New York lineup ,should he stay healthy. When the Mets struck unusually quickly to sign the former All-Star most expected this to be a busy offseason for Sandy Alderson and company. That has not been the case as the Mets have been quiet since that move in November.

2. Mets trade Ike Davis to Pittsburgh: The debate over who should be the Mets first basemen mercifully came to an end when the Mets traded shipped the former first round draft pick to Pittsburgh. While the Mets didn’t get much back in exchange for Ike Davis, the move freed up such much needed money and more importantly allowed Lucas Duda to play first everyday.  The left-handed slugger blossomed after being handed the job and hit 30 homers to go with 92 RBI’s for the Mets. Duda will be critical for the 2015 Mets.

Davis did not play well in Pittsburgh and has since been moved to Oakland as a salary dump where he will serve as depth in the A’s first base puzzle.

1. Sandy Alderson’s 2013 offseason signings don’t pan out: Unfortunately the Mets most significant moment of 2014 is a negative one. Last offseason Alderson and company signed OF Curtis Granderson and Chris Young along with P Bartolo Colon to lucrative deals, none of which have worked out. When you are operating at such a small payroll like the Mets, you must hit on all of your free agent acquisitions and the Mets hit on none from last winter. Granderson had a dismal year and received the boo birds often at Citi Field. The former Yankee is still owed $47 million over three years by the Mets. The Grandy Man has now not hit over .232 since the 2011 season. Granderson should benefit from the fences coming in power-wise but must improve on his .227/.326/.388 triple slash in his first season in Queens.

Chris Young was a disaster for the Mets and was released midway through the season. Young was the worst signing in Sandy Alderson’s tenure as Mets General Manager. Young badly struggled even just putting the ball in play as a member of the Mets.

While Bartolo Colon was a reliable veteran presence for the Mets in 2014, but the team simply over payed him. Colon,41, is still owed $11 million in 2015 which is far too much money for a 5th starter on a team that doesn’t want payroll to exceed $90-95 million. The Mets attempted to trade Colon but couldn’t find a team willing to take on his entire salary. Signing Colon last winter is preventing the Mets from finding a shortstop now.

The 2014 Mets year was mostly uneventful but expect 2015 to be a much more interesting year in Queens. With Matt Harvey back along with a rejuvenated David Wright this Met team should improve on 2014’s 79 wins.

Opening Night is now only 100 days away….

What are you looking forward to most from the 2015 Mets?

By Steven Inman Spring 2013 014

More media reports have emerged that the Mets have had dialogue with the Colorado Rockies regarding superstar shortstop Troy Tulowitzki. Tulo, 30, is a 4-time All-Star and is a career .299 hitter in nine major league seasons. When healthy, few position players are better than Tulowitzki but he just isn’t healthy enough to be worth the remaining $118 million over six years on his current contract, for the Mets plus give up a ton of prospects starting with top prospect Noah Syndergaard.

Tulo has played in 130 games in a season just three times in his nine year career. Last year he was limited to 91 games after having hip surgery. Many great baseball players have hip labral surgery and have had trouble coming back as the same caliber player. Tulowitzki’s status for Opening Day is already in question so why would the Mets, who have negative payroll flexibility (trying to trade salary) acquire such a big contract and give up top chips.

If Tulowitzki was a free agent today and the Mets signed him to a six-year $118 million contract, that would be difficult for this small budget club to handle and that is without trading prospects.

A deal for Tulowitzki is still highly unlikely even if the two clubs could match up on players. The Mets would want the Rockies to pick up much of Tulo’s salary.

While he doesn’t have an actual no-trade clause, Tulowitzki has such a tight relationship with Rockies owner Dick Monfort that he could potentially decline a deal to a destination he doesn’t want to go to. It is unknown if Tulowitzki would “accept” a deal to the Mets.

It appears as if the Rockies are more interested in trading Tulowitzki than the Mets are in acquiring Tulowitzki.

The Mets need to watch their money so they are able to sign lock up young pitchers such as Zack Wheeler, Jacob deGrom and others soon. Acquiring a $20 million a year player like Tulowitzki would prevent the Mets from doing that, so you aren’t just trading prospects you are trading the futures of many on the rise stars like Wheeler.

The Mets have preached payroll flexibility since the day Sandy Alderson was hired. Acquiring Troy Tulowitzki would completely go against that.

Citi Field to host Austim Speaks Event

Posted: December 19, 2014 in News, Opinion
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By Steven Inman Spring 2013 012

Metropolitan Hospitality, the world-class event and hospitality company for Citi Field, will host “Batter Up for a Cause: Autism Speaks” on Wednesday, February 4, 2015 from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Attendees will participate in a unique batting practice event in the Visitors Clubhouse at Citi Field and enjoy light refreshments, a special appearance by Mr. Met and an exclusive tour of the ballpark.

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Autism Speaks, the world’s leading autism science and advocacy organization. It is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families since 2005.

It truly is a great cause, especially during this holiday season. Plus when else as Met fans will you get the opportunity to take batting practice at Citi Field?

Tickets for the event are $99 and can be purchased online at Mets.com/BatterUp. If you are interested you may also purchase tickets by calling 718-507-TIXX.

Tickets are on sale now!

By Steven Inman

Noah Syndergaard should makes his MLB debut in 2015 (Photo by NY Post)

Noah Syndergaard should makes his MLB debut in 2015 (Photo by NY Post)

Baseball America has come out with their yearly top ten prospect list for every MLB Organization. The Mets are headlined by top pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard who has been in trade rumors of late but is likely to stay Met property.

The big riser in the list in LHP Steven Matz, who didn’t even rank in the top ten last winter and is now right behind Syndergaard. Matz had a terrific year and could help the Mets in some role in the second half of 2015.

The prospect who fell the most was 1B Dominic Smith who was #4 last year but doesn’t appear in the top ten this winter. Smith struggled to hit for power in Low-A Savannah, a park that is very difficult to hit home runs in. 2015 will be a big year for the contact-first hitter.

The Mets of late have had mostly pitchers as top prospects, but the system has become much more balanced as six of the top ten prospects are position players.

Dilson Herrera and Rafael Montero are the only Met prospects on the list that have already made their big league debuts. Here is the full list.

Rank Prospect  Pos.  Last Year
1  Noah Syndergaard RHP  1
2 Steven Matz LHP  –
3 Brandon Nimmo OF  8
4 Dilson Herrera 2B  –
5 Kevin Plawecki C  5
6 Amed Rosario SS  7
7 Michael Conforto OF  –
8 Rafeal Montero RHP  3
9 Marcos Molina RHP  –
10 Gavin Cecchini SS  9

BrokeMets Podcast 5

Posted: December 13, 2014 in Podcast
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By Steven Inman

Join Rob DeLucia of WSJU Radio and myself as we discuss the entire winter meetings in San Diego. We break down the entire N.L. East and determine what team is going to give the Washington Nationals some trouble in 2015.

Remember if you have a question for the next BrokeMets podcast leave it in the comment section and we will answer it during the next show.

 

By Steven Inman

The Mets haven't had pop like Mayberry's on their bench since Scott Hairston departed as a free agent after the 2012 season

The Mets haven’t had pop like Mayberry’s on their bench since Scott Hairston departed as a free agent after the 2012 season

The Mets have signed right-handed hitter John Mayberry Jr. to a one year deal worth $1.45 million.

Mayberry, 30, is coming off a miserable 2014 with the Phillies and Blue Jays. Between both clubs the outfielder hit .212/.310/.425 in 78 games. (168 plate appearances)

Mayberry Jr. came up as a top prospect with the Rangers as the 19th overall pick of the 2005 draft but has not had the career that Texas or even the Phillies envisioned for him.

The outfielder played for the Phillies in the N.L. East from 2009 until August 31st, 2014 when he was traded to Toronto. Mayberry was non-tendered by the Blue Jays last week.

Mayberry can be a good weapon for Terry Collins if used properly. Mayberry should ONLY be used against left-handed pitching. In 534 career plate appearances vs. lefties, Mayberry is a career .269 hitter with 30 homers. That is compared to a .224/.293/.365 slash line in 866 plate appearances vs. right-handers.

Mayberry is a career .304 hitter with seven homers in 121 PA as a pinch hitter.

The move allows the Mets to move Michael Cuddyer to first base and play Mayberry in the outfield when the opposition starts a left-handed starter. The Mets have said publicly that they plan on playing Lucas Duda everyday, even against left-handers. It will be interesting to see if their tune changes now that the lefty crushing Mayberry will wear the blue and orange.