New York Mets
Filed by: Brad Koesters – Prospect Junkies MLB Corrospondant
Key Additions—Frank Francisco, Jon Rauch, Andres Torres
Key Losses——-Jose Reyes
Lineup—You think of a lineup that has David Wright and Jason Bay in the middle of it, and have to think that is a good start. When healthy, this is a decent tandem, but can they stay healthy? And even if these 2 are able to stay healthy, is Bay really as good as he is sometimes perceived? Looking at the rest of this lineup, and all I can say is Johan Santana could come back and be his old self, and he still isn’t winning 15 games. I am not a huge Bay guy, so combining him with Andres Torres and likely Lucas Duda in the outfield makes this a well below average bunch of hitters. Combine that with CitiField, and I expect the Mets to have one of the worst productions from a group of outfielders in the league. The infield doesn’t provide much hope either. The loss of Reyes hurts. Yes Wright could be a nice middle of the order bat, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he is dealt mid-season if he puts up some nice numbers. The right side of the infield could be okay with Daniel Murphy and Ike Davis, but not nearly enough to carry the burden. All in all, I think this has the makings of one of the worst offenses in the NL.
Pitching—Right off the bat you have to look at what could or could not be based on the health of Johan Santana. When healthy, he is as good as they have been in the league, and is a flat out dominant pitcher. While it may take some time, I do hope he is able to stay healthy and is back to normal. Lining up behind him is a good group of arms, or at least they look good compared to this offense. Mike Pelfrey has been successful at this level and slides in at the #2 slot, while Jonathan Niese is slotted as their 3rd starter. RA Dickey is coming off a pretty good year and is slated as the #4 guy. All in all, I think this is a pretty decent rotation, IF Santana stays healthy. As for the bullpen, I like that they added Francisco and also Rauch to the back end. Although they are not shut down type relievers, it adds stability. And with a somewhat established rotation, I don’t expect this bullpen to be abused like some of the others. With that being said, I still don’t expect big numbers, and don’t see Francisco getting that many opportunities. They just won’t score runs.
Outlook—You hear analyst upon analyst mention how down the Mets are, and they are absolutely right. I somewhat feel sorry for the guys who signed with the Mets with the expectation that they were going to spend money to win. Yes they spent money, but now that has changed. To me, if I am a Mets fan, I am hoping Wright, Bay, and Santana get healthy and produce, so we can try to flip them for pieces to build upon. While Bay and Santana are signed for huge money next year, I think with a solid 1st half of the year you could possibly move them. Wright becomes a free agent, so the Mets have about 3 months to find out if he wants to stick around, and if not trade him for pieces. But for 2012, if you have wanted to visit CitiField, it would be a good year, because there will be plenty of good seats available.