Minaya insists that the Mets can replace Alou from within until early-mid May when he gets back from hernia surgery. I’ve been arguing here for some time about signing Barry Bonds. A right handed bat, with power, would be a better fit for this team though. The Mets could really use a right handed hitter that can play the outfield and first base.
I don’t believe that Minaya is looking within the organization exclusively to replace Alou. I believe that he doesn’t want to appear desperate publicly. Sammy Sosa would be a fit if he could play first base, which I don’t see happening. Sosa wouldn’t be happy for long periods of time on the bench and occasional pinch hitting duty though.
There are rumors that Minaya is trying to work a deal with the Tigers for Marcus Thames. Last year he played in 86 games for the Tigers: .242 18 homers 54 RBI. He played 33 games at first base, 33 in LF, 9 in RF, and 6 at DH. The Tigers could use some help in the bullpen too. That’s where the Mets are trying to move some players. This could be a good fit for both teams.
Mike Vaccaro of the Post wrote a good piece on Minaya today. He’ll surely be judged this year on the performance of Church and Schneider. After all, it was the Wilpon’s checkbook that brought Johan Santana to the Mets not Omar. Barring any trades or acquisitions this year, I wouldn’t want my performance measured by the production of Church and Schneider.
Jon Heyman of SI ranks the GM’s. I like the list but I think Brian Cashman might be a little too high on the list at #5 considering the resources that he has at his disposal. Omar Minaya checks in at #8 which I think is fair. I’ve always had a mixed opinion of him. Exchanging Milledge and LoDuca for the Nationals Schneider and Church could come back to bite him this year. On paper, that doesn’t look very good. The Nationals got the best of that one.
I haven’t posted to the site in quite a while. I started a new job in July and didn’t really have a chance to regularly update the site. That’s changed now! It’s time to get back to Mets business.
The off-season leaves some holes open in the Mets roster. Primarily, second base and catcher. The possibility of Glavine not coming back leaves a spot in the starting rotation open as well.
Second base: News reports have it that the Mets have been wining and dining David Eckstein in Greenwich. He would move from short to second and most likely hit number two behind Reyes. Keep in mind that the Mets already signed Marlon Anderson and Damien Easley, both of whom shouldn’t play every day but would be fine for short periods of time. I’ve never been a fan of David Eckstein, and the talk is that he wants a four year contract. That’s too much in my opinion. I’d rather see the Mets look at Mark Loretta for a one or two year contract. He could hit behind Reyes and with a little more power than Eckstein. I saw enough of Luis Castillo last season to know that he isn’t close to the player he was with the Marlins. The Mets shouldn’t even consider signing him again.
Catcher: Ramon Castro signed for two years. I love that signing. He’s a fantastic bench player! Yorvit Torrealba seems to be the Mets top choice to handle the majority of catching. There really aren’t any great free agent catchers out there this off-season. I don’t want LoDuca back, and I don’t think the Mets do either. LoDuca talks too much and produces too little. He’s also in his mid-thirties, the typical decline years for catchers. Jason Kendall, Michael Barret, and Jason LaRue are the other free agent possibilities. The Mets could probably get Ramon Hernandez in a trade from the Orioles if they wanted to go that direction. It would depend on how much the Orioles want for him.
Starting Pitcher: I have a feeling that the Mets might be thinking about trading for a SP. The free agent list isn’t great. Assuming that Glavine doesn’t come back, and I really hope he doesn’t, the logical possibilities would include: Freddy Garcia, Bartolo Colon, Livan Hernandez, Kyle Lohse, and Jon Leiber. There are some stretches that we could look at too. We know how Rick Peterson likes to work with “project” pitchers. The fee agents that come to mind are: Tony Armas, Matt Clement, and Wade Miller.
The bottom line is that last season is finished, forgotten, and the historic season ending collapse is over. It’s time to think about who will be reporting to camp in February.