How About Those Mets?

2009 December 17

So I haven’t made a baseball post in a while. I haven’t made a Mets post in an even longer while. I think it’s about time I bitch and moan about this offseason and just how little hope I have for 2010. Hopefully this post will just pour out of me.

Let’s see: the Yankees practically stole Curtis Granderson from the Tigers; the Red Sox have signed John Lackey and Mike Cameron and are reportedly trying to trade for Adrian Gonzalez (I think they should give up Buchholz and Ellsbury, myself — Walkoff Walk seems to agree); and the Phillies have traded for and wrapped up Roy Halladay for the next five years (although stupidly trading Lee softened the blow immensely). These are the big teams and markets the Mets are supposedly competing with.

The Mets have signed a bunch of replacement-level players, a Japanese reliever, and are reportedly willing to offer Jason Bay a 5-year contract. Fuck me.

A big problem is that the Mets totally fucked their payroll with their spending LAST offseason. $22 million a year wrapped up in Oliver Perez and Francisco Rodriguez for TWO MORE YEARS. In 2009, the two of them combined were actually below replacement level according to Fangraphs. Holy shit. Luis Castillo is not good, and I hate him as much as anyone, but his contract isn’t as atrocious as either of those. As much as people have liked to poke fun at Omar Minaya futilely attempting to trade Castillo, I’m pretty sure it’d be easier to find a suitor for him as opposed to Ollie or K-Rod.

So what should the Mets do? They NEED to go after Matt Holliday. If you’re willing to go to 5/80 for Jason Bay, who already has one foot in the DH bucket, you should be fine with going 6/110 for Holliday, if not a bit more. My personal nightmare scenario is the Mets signing Bay to aforementioned contract, and Holliday signing elsewhere with that deal. Holliday is the better hitter by only a slight margin, but by any fielding metric, he’s also been the far superior defender over the past three seasons. And he’s a year and a half younger too. Another year at $2 mil/yr more is nothing. Of course, this is not going to happen. Minaya seems set on Bay for whatever reason, even citing home run plots to prove that Citi Field suits Bay more. I hate everything.

On the pitching front, I want Ben Sheets and I guesssss Joel Pineiro. I wanted Rich Harden, but it’s too late for that! The Rangers snapped him up with a $7.5 million contract with a $11.5 million team option for 2011. I would have been ecstatic with that deal. He may only pitch 140 innings a year, but he pitches them a lot better than anyone currently on the Mets not named Santana. Plus, he has turned into a flyball pitcher, which seems to be the way to go for Citi Field. Ben Sheets is basically the same mystery box as Harden, but unfortunately he seems to be asking for more, even though he didn’t even pitch last season. But he’s a better pitcher than Harden when healthy, and he’s also pitched more innings per year, so I guess it’s understandable.

Pineiro I’m weary of for multiple reasons. 1) He has to be looking for a three-year deal. 2) Last season came the fuck out of nowhere after years of sub-mediocrity. 3) He won’t have miracle worker Dave Duncan in his ear. 4) Even with that fantastic season, he struck NO ONE out. 5) Basically every underlying stat seems ripe for regression.

But who the fuck else is out there? Jason Marquis? Another guy who’ll be asking for too much after having a career year. Maybe take a chance on Chien Ming-Wang, another sinkerballer who actually had a few years of success before falling off the rails completely. Or just wait until next offseason to really spend money on a pitcher, considering at the moment Josh Beckett, Cliff Lee, Brandon Webb and Javier Vasquez are all lined up to be free agents. That’s why I just wanted the stop gap of Harden and Sheets, but noooo. Maybe pick up Erik Bedard whenever he’s ready to pitch again. Sigh.

It’s really amazing how far apart the extreme ends of possibility for the Mets’ 2010 season are. David Wright, Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, and Johan Santana could all return to 2008 form. Mike Pelfrey could improve. Oliver Perez could get back to his infuriatingly erratic, but ultimately average, self. John Maine could pitch more than 100 innings. K-Rod could do…decent. Castillo could manage another decent year. Daniel Murphy and Jeff Francoeur could possibly produce above replacement level.

But then again, maybe Wright only hits 15 HR and has another year with an ISO under .150. Maybe Reyes and Beltran have permanently lost a step, both on the bases and in the field. Maybe Santana’s K rate will continue to decrease while his BB rate continues to increase, with the rest of the rotation disappointing again. Maybe K-Rod continues his spiral into closer hell. I can’t even finish this paragraph.

I feel like I’ll be watching Mets baseball in 2010 mostly for educational purposes, with no expectations for actual performance or success.

Related posts:

  1. Nice To See The Mets’ 2010 Season Is Over Before It Started
  2. Thank God That Mets’ Season Is Over
  3. The Aftermath Of The 2008 Mets Is Worse Than Their Actual Failure