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Monday, November 15, 2010

Daniel Murphy working at second base

There could be worse locations to spend your fall and early winter days than the Dominican Republic, but Daniel Murphy is certainly not taking in the sun and the pristine beaches while he’s living on the Caribbean island.

After a 2010 season marred with injuries and after he was supplanted at first base by rookie phenom Ike Davis, Murphy, 25, is playing winter ball with the Dominican Aguilas team, honing his skills at second base and hoping that next season will result in a rebirth of sorts.

Why not?

PreservedFish Posted: November 15, 2010 at 05:54 PM | 45 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mets

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   1. Elvis Posted: November 15, 2010 at 09:29 PM (#3690372)
This link works
http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/mets/2010/11/14/2010-11-14_daniel_murphy_working_at_second_base_during_winter_ball_in_dominican_republic_to.html

In TFA, Murphy says his Spanish is good enough "to get me fed."

Glad to know that the Mets haven't completely given up on the idea of him playing 2B. I thought that the injury might have been their last straw.
   2. Sam M. Posted: November 15, 2010 at 10:28 PM (#3690447)
From what I read at the time, the injury was on a play Murphy's Bison's teammates thought was dirty on the part of the baserunner. Ken Oberkfell thought he turned the DP very well, in fact, before getting his knee ripped up, so it would be pretty odd for the Mets to give up on him as a 2B because of that play -- unless the injury itself had compromised his ability to play the middle infield. Which I guess this time in winter ball may tell us, right?

Frankly, I think that if the Mets have their second baseman of the future in the system, it is almost certainly Reese Havens. It's not Daniel Murphy, and it's not Ruben Tejada. I have my doubts about Havens, too, but if he can get and stay healthy, he's got the best chance. If it's not him, then the next guy who'll hold the job for 700-1000 PAs isn't currently in the system.
   3. Mark S. is bored Posted: November 15, 2010 at 10:39 PM (#3690463)
Frankly, I think that if the Mets have their second baseman of the future in the system, it is almost certainly Reese Havens.


The problem is that Havens is going down the Fernando Martinez prospect path. I'd like to see Havens healthy for a full year before declaring him the second baseman of the future.
   4. Chris in Wicker Park Posted: November 16, 2010 at 12:39 AM (#3690587)
I think Ike was pretty good last year but I'm not sure I'd call him a "phenom".

Hard to see much downside in this move. I expect that the new Mets are also exlporing other options instead of wish casting that this solves 2b on its own.
   5. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: November 16, 2010 at 12:58 AM (#3690600)
I like Tejada. He had 22 walks and 8 HBP against only 38 strikeouts which is a more than respectable rate. He's not ready yet but I do think he has the potential to be a solid regular because he can really pick it. And truth be told, he's the best guy in the Met system to replace Reyes if he's not on the team in 2012.
   6. depletion Posted: November 16, 2010 at 01:48 AM (#3690631)
Didn't Dan Murphy go through the 2B experiment in the Arizona Fall League a couple seasons ago? My recollection was that the consensus was that he didn't field well there. Maybe with some hard work he can improve.
If Havens stays glued together and can field at the major league level he could be a star, because he appears to be a very good hitter for 2B.
   7. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 02:03 AM (#3690640)
I like Tejada. He had 22 walks and 8 HBP against only 38 strikeouts which is a more than respectable rate. He's not ready yet but I do think he has the potential to be a solid regular because he can really pick it. And truth be told, he's the best guy in the Met system to replace Reyes if he's not on the team in 2012.

I am all for giving Tejada time to develop. The absolute last place he should have been doing that in 2010 was Citi Field, and that remains the last place he should be doing it in 2011. Let the kid learn to hit -- if he's going to -- in the minors, the way 29 out of 30 organizations in baseball would (and hopefully now 30 out of 30). I have no idea whether he's got the talent to learn and was just overmatched by pitchers for lack of experience, or if he will never hit because he just doesn't have enough pop (.282 SLG) in his bat. Contact can keep a guy from striking out, thus explaining a seemingly nice w/k rate, but it doesn't keep him from making too many outs (.305 OBP). Whichever it is, I am certain of one thing: it will do very little good for the 2011 Mets to have him with the major league team, and it'll do even less good for Tejada and the Mets of the future.
   8. Greg Goosen at 30 Posted: November 16, 2010 at 02:04 AM (#3690641)
Only the Mets would think that a guy who couldn't play left field can play second. Just like 20 years ago they thought futility infielder Keith Miller could play center.
   9. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 16, 2010 at 02:14 AM (#3690649)
Only the Mets would think that a guy who couldn't play left field can play second. Just like 20 years ago they thought futility infielder Keith Miller could play center.

I'm pretty sure there are lots of guys who can play 2B that can't play LF. It's really two totally different skill sets.
   10. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 02:14 AM (#3690650)
Only the Mets would think that a guy who couldn't play left field can play second.

Well, they are different skill sets. The fact that Murphy had a good defensive rep as a minor league third baseman, and played pretty well at first base in the majors, are in and of themselves unusual given how really bad he was in LF. So Murphy could be that unusual player who just can't handle the OF because he can't play fly balls adequately, but could handle 2B. There's nothing wrong with giving it a try in the winter league. It's not like they are handing him the major league job right now.
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 16, 2010 at 02:21 AM (#3690652)
Well, they are different skill sets.

Of course. Imagine Greg Nettles in LF, ugh! Didn't stop him from being one of the top 3 or 4 defensive 3Bs of all time.
   12. Foghorn Leghorn Posted: November 16, 2010 at 03:05 AM (#3690665)
It's not Daniel Murphy
I don't know why it can't be for the next 5 or 6 years.
   13. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 03:25 AM (#3690682)
I don't know why it can't be for the next 5 or 6 years.

The odds are against it, that's all. I'm all for giving it a shot, but the odds are that he's not going to be able to learn to play the position well enough in some winter ball and spring training to give the Mets adequate defense by Opening Day 2011. If you send him to Buffalo with instructions to concentrate on nothing but defense, he's going to be at least 26, maybe 27 before he even competes for the everyday job, and maybe they've moved on by then, either with Havens or via trade or maybe some minor league FA. Putting him in the mix and hoping for the best makes all the sense in the world for the organization, and for Murphy. My guess, though, is that it improves him and them by making him a more viable utility player, but not by making him a strong candidate to be the long-term answer at 2B.
   14. nmigliore Posted: November 16, 2010 at 03:45 AM (#3690693)
Havens might need back surgery, so penciling him as the future 2B just yet would be a mistake. However, if he CAN stay healthy, I think he has a great shot; hes got great power and plate discipline for a middle infield prospect. If things break right, I could honestly see him developing into a Dan Uggla-type hitter with a little less power.

Trying Murphy out 2B seems like an okay idea to me. I mean why the heck not? If he stinks there, you have Ruben Tejada, Justin Turner, or perhaps even a low-cost pickup like Felipe Lopez to turn to for the season.
   15. Steve Phillips' Hot Cougar (DrStankus) Posted: November 16, 2010 at 04:21 AM (#3690722)
I think I've been getting Daniel Murphy and David Murphy confused.
   16. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 04:51 AM (#3690750)
Putting him in the mix and hoping for the best makes all the sense in the world for the organization, and for Murphy.

Last time I remember this coming up, I thought the consensus was that the best thing for Murphy would be a trade to a team who can use a 3B/1B. What's best for the Mets isn't necessarily best for Murphy. He could develop into an Eric Hinske type of utility guy, minus the ability to play the OF, and that's good enough to spend some years cashing major league paychecks, esp. if he heads to an AL team soon. Staying with the Mets, who have Davis at 1B and Wright at 3B, his career depends on being able to hack it at 2B or scrape together enough ABs when Davis needs time off.
   17. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 05:06 AM (#3690758)
He could develop into an Eric Hinske type of utility guy, minus the ability to play the OF, and that's good enough to spend some years cashing major league paychecks, esp. if he heads to an AL team soon. Staying with the Mets, who have Davis at 1B and Wright at 3B, his career depends on being able to hack it at 2B or scrape together enough ABs when Davis needs time off.

Even if all of that is right, what he's doing now is still best for Murphy. If Murphy's best (likely) future is as a versatile 3B/1B back-up, maybe with the occasional Ty Wigginton year in him when a job and the right situation opens up for him, then he only increases his value to teams if he can also fill in once in a while at second base for a game or two, or even just to handle it late in a game and they have to pinch-hit for the last "real" middle infielder. A team in that situation might just want or need him to be good enough just to handle extra innings once in a while. Being able to handle 2B "barely adequately" -- and thus the work he's doing right now -- might just win Murphy a last roster spot somewhere, someday.
   18. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: November 16, 2010 at 05:40 AM (#3690770)
I think I've been getting Daniel Murphy and David Murphy confused.


OH!

I'm glad I parachuted into this thread.
   19. Steve Phillips' Hot Cougar (DrStankus) Posted: November 16, 2010 at 06:06 AM (#3690777)
I had problems for a while with the Zambranos.

My brain could not hold the both of them at the same time. I'd think, what's that guy with the Z name on the Mets? Oh yeah, Zambrano...and then Carlos would pop out of my head.
   20. JJ1986 Posted: November 16, 2010 at 06:21 AM (#3690783)
I had problems for a while with the Zambranos.


You and Jim Duquette.
   21. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: November 16, 2010 at 08:32 AM (#3690825)
You and Jim Duquette.

Primey.
   22. Something Other Posted: November 16, 2010 at 09:28 AM (#3690835)
Heck, why not. Given the mess that is currently the Mets 2B situation, it's hard to see what giving Murphy his 6.2% shot at turning into a -7 fielder at second is going to cost. The value he had as a trade chip to get a comparable young player at second was low last offseason, and after the injury pretty much vanished, so there's not much downside to this.

As for The Slide, it looked to me like there wasn't anything particularly dirty going on, but rather that Murphy made two mistakes on the play. The first was that, probably because of his inexperience, he was making a throw that had no chance of getting the runner. The second was that, entirely because of his inexperience, he threw while coming to a complete halt in order to stand like a statue while throwing instead of letting his momentum carrying him towards third, away from the runner. Seemed like typical Mets dysfunction: instead of giving Murphy a few thousand reps in practice, wasting the valuable time of a coach and a couple of subs, throw him into the position in game situations because, hey, how hard can it really be to play second base??
   23. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 01:24 PM (#3690849)
Even if all of that is right, what he's doing now is still best for Murphy.

Not if it results in another season-ending injury. I pretty much assumed the injury would end any thoughts of him playing 2B in the future. Let's not pretend that the risk doesn't come along with the position. Staying healthy at 2B, as Bill James pointed out, is a skill.

The best thing for Murphy is to not be on the Mets. Now, the Mets don't have to act in his best interests, but the fact of the matter is Murphy right now is staking his career on being able to get enough ABs at 2B with the Mets in 2011 to show he's worth a roster spot. It'll be great if he develops the skills to be a regular, but it's not very likely. And as a backup to Wright and Davis, he's not seeing 200 ABs this year, barring a collapse from Davis. Unfortunately for Murphy, because of the injury he has less trade value today than he did a year ago, so he's staying with the team.
   24. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 03:13 PM (#3690880)
The best thing for Murphy is to not be on the Mets.

That may be true, but if it is, Murphy improves his trade value if he demonstrates the ability to handle second base at least enough to be useful there in a pinch, and maybe even a bit more if he shows somewhat better skills. You act like there's a distinct adversity of interests between Murphy and the Mets, but their interests overlap more than you acknowledge. If he increases his value to them, he also increases his value to other teams, and hence the potential that he might be dealt and revive his career elsewhere.

Yes, the injury hurt his trade value. But that's rear-view mirror stuff. Looking ahead, as things stand he has value to other teams as a potential reserve corner infielder. Nobody is going to go out of their way to acquire a guy who gives them that, especially if he can't also handle a few games in the OF when needed, as Murphy has proven he can't. If Murphy is going to be a useful reserve -- not just for the Mets, but for anybody else, too -- he needs to add a position to his resume. Yes, there's some risk attached to that of another injury. But IMHO, the upside reward accrues not just to the Mets, but to Daniel Murphy's career. Without it, my guess is "career minor leaguer" with occasional partial seasons in the majors when he gets a break. With it, his chances of sticking on rosters would be greatly enhanced. He's smart to take the risk.
   25. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 04:51 PM (#3690957)
as things stand he has value to other teams as a potential reserve corner infielder. Nobody is going to go out of their way to acquire a guy who gives them that, especially if he can't also handle a few games in the OF when needed, as Murphy has proven he can't. If Murphy is going to be a useful reserve -- not just for the Mets, but for anybody else, too -- he needs to add a position to his resume.

That's simply not true. You're making it sound as if there's no precedent for lefty-hitting 1B/3B reserves unless they can also fill in as a 2B or corner OF. I'm saying, if I'm Daniel Murphy and I'm given a choice between spending 2011 in:
1) NYM- Play 2B sporadically b/c my d isn't that good there, come off the bench as a PH, and spell Ike Davis and David Wright, both of whom look very durable, and maybe DH during interleague play. Davis and Wright are pretty good defensively, so I'm not likely to even log time as a late-inning defensive replacement. 200-250 ABs tops, barring a complete collapse from Davis (not out of the question), a traumatic injury to Wright, or a huge leap forward in my ability to handle 2B (possible, but not likely).
2) TOR- Have a shot at the 3B job, give them a cheap alternative in case they decide to move their expensive 1B, and DH whenever they can work me into the lineup. Not sniff a whiff of 2B, where I suffered a traumatic, season-ending injury after not standing there for very ling at all. Stake my career on being able to hit enough as a corner infielder, rather than field 2B well enough to not embarrass myself and my team. 300-400 ABs easily, with an everyday role possible if I play my way into it, either at 1B, 3B or DH.

I take #2 without looking back. Murphy has shown he can hit enough to be a reserve at 1B/3B. He hasn't ever shown the mobility to play 2B. Maybe not getting a ton of ABs in 2011 will work to his advantage and he'll put up another high BA, but IMO the best thing for him is to rack up 300-400 ABs while he's focused as much as possible on his hitting, and prove he's got the ability to hit at the major league level. I think his willingness to play 2B is a testament to his dedication and selflessness, rather than his intelligence. Unless you think staying healthy at 2B is based on luck moreso than ability.
   26. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 05:17 PM (#3690989)
But the problem with that argument is this: how many jobs are there for a guy like Murphy, and how much competition is there for those jobs? A guy who can play 3B and who is otherwise limited to 1B is nice, but that's not exactly a rare commodity. There's no guarantee -- hell, there's not even any likelihood -- that Toronto is going to see Daniel Murphy as the best option available to them, given his lack of versatility. Somebody with relatively equal offense but who can also spend some time in the outfield brings more to the table.

I'm not saying it's impossible for a 3B/1B reserve-level guy to find a gig. I'm saying it's always going to be a battle, he's always going to be hanging on, hoping that the team doesn't come up with a young guy, or get a throw-in in a trade, whom it thinks (maybe rightly, maybe not) is better. Or who is more versatile. I think that Daniel Murphy is improving his long-term odds of sticking, and sticking longer and more consistently, in the major leagues, if he can handle second base. The better he can handle it, the more he improves those odds. He's smart to take whatever injury risk he might be running -- which I happen to think you overstate, but I certainly don't mean to trivialize.
   27. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 05:31 PM (#3691006)
I'm saying it's always going to be a battle, he's always going to be hanging on, hoping that the team doesn't come up with a young guy, or get a throw-in in a trade, whom it thinks (maybe rightly, maybe not) is better. Or who is more versatile. I think that Daniel Murphy is improving his long-term odds of sticking, and sticking longer and more consistently, in the major leagues, if he can handle second base.

I'm not talking about a hypothetical. I'm talking about 2011. Murphy's best shot at having a career is showing a team he can hit enough to be a corner infielder, and maybe even a regular. He has a better shot at a 350+ AB season of .350/.450 in Toronto than he does as a Met for 2011. There may be other teams that fit that bill better than Toronto, they're just the first one that came to mind, as they just lost their 2010 3B, used some pretty mediocre hitters at DH last year, and have no one of substance at 1B. If Murphy gets 200-250 ABs in 2011, no matter what he does with the bat, his ability to handle a regular role will be suspect. Unless he becomes a competent, rather than passable, 2B AND hits well in a significant number of ABs with the Mets.

He's smart to take whatever injury risk he might be running -- which I happen to think you overstate, but I certainly don't mean to trivialize.

I could see saying this last year. But he just had a season-ending knee injury-- not as uncommon for 2B as it is for a 3B or 1B-- directly related to his play at 2B. Again, if you think that was a function of luck rather than skill, we're just not on the same page.

I also think there's an opportunity cost to spending time drilling at 2B, that all of that hard work to learn a new position is going to result in Murphy not devoting enough time to his hitting. If this was a guy who had any experience there at all, that wouldn't be the case. If I'm Murphy, I stake my career on my bat and showing that I'm still a capable 3B, rather than leaving teams to guess what I could do there if I wasn't blocked by David Wright.
   28. Freeballin' (Tales of Met Power) Posted: November 16, 2010 at 06:12 PM (#3691048)
I'm confused by this whole debate. Is Toronto or anytbody else offering the Mets anything worthwhile for Murphy? If not, then I recommend he do what is necessary to get playing time with the Mets, because his other option is AAA.
   29. AJMcCringleberry Posted: November 16, 2010 at 06:26 PM (#3691066)
Are teams even thinking of Murphy as a third baseman? When was the last time he played there?
   30. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 06:36 PM (#3691083)
I'm confused by this whole debate. Is Toronto or anytbody else offering the Mets anything worthwhile for Murphy? If not, then I recommend he do what is necessary to get playing time with the Mets, because his other option is AAA.

Well, kind of. He could, on the down low, go to management (a new regime) and say "I tried the 2B thing and it didn't work out, can you kick the tires and see if anyone wants me as a corner infielder? If not I'll stay and give 2B another shot but really my future lies outside of this organization"...Not that Murphy's the kind of guy to do that.
   31. ColonelTom Posted: November 16, 2010 at 06:43 PM (#3691087)
I had him pegged as the next Frank Catalanotto a while back, but I think Greg Dobbs might be the better comp (more pop than Catalanotto but less plate discipline). If they put him at 2B regularly, though, you're looking at the next Skip Schumaker - he won't be able to hit enough to outweigh the poor defense.
   32. Sam M. Posted: November 16, 2010 at 08:19 PM (#3691193)
Well, kind of. He could, on the down low, go to management (a new regime) and say "I tried the 2B thing and it didn't work out, can you kick the tires and see if anyone wants me as a corner infielder? If not I'll stay and give 2B another shot but really my future lies outside of this organization"... Not that Murphy's the kind of guy to do that.

And if he were, I'm quite certain that it would not improve his chances of making other organizations want him as the kind of player they'd want to add for. When you are a marginal guy, maybe hoping to win a job and stick, showing your willingness to do what it takes and having a professional attitude about improving your game in all ways, is pretty much Job 1. Sending a signal of that kind to a guy as respected as Sandy Alderson would be the quickest way I could think of for Daniel Murphy to kill his career once and for all. Word spreads.

Unless, you know, he really were on the down low. That might do it, too.
   33. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 09:40 PM (#3691293)
And if he were, I'm quite certain that it would not improve his chances of making other organizations want him as the kind of player they'd want to add for. When you are a marginal guy, maybe hoping to win a job and stick, showing your willingness to do what it takes and having a professional attitude about improving your game in all ways, is pretty much Job 1. Sending a signal of that kind to a guy as respected as Sandy Alderson would be the quickest way I could think of for Daniel Murphy to kill his career once and for all.

Murphy at 2B seems like a round peg in a square hole. I'm pulling for him to succeed, but I'm not banking on it. They could ask Murphy to try his hand at catcher and he'd strap a mitt on, but that doesn't mean it would be a good idea. Avoiding the runner on a double play isn't an easy skill to develop. It's why traumatic, career-altering knee injuries happen so often at 2B. Murphy has never struck me as particularly nimble. He had good range and hands at 1B, but he's far from acrobatic. Sticking a guy like that at 2B is just dangerous, as he showed last season.

We'd all love to see the Mets get a 2B who can hit, but Murphy isn't very likely to be that guy. The reason Murphy is worth less right now than he was a year ago is the Mets tried him at 2B and it went horribly wrong. The solution isn't to repeat the mistake.
   34. PreservedFish Posted: November 16, 2010 at 10:08 PM (#3691324)
I think Murphy is nearly useless if he can't add a bit of defensive versatility to his resume. Practicing secondbase is a no-brainer.
   35. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 10:18 PM (#3691338)
I think Murphy is nearly useless if he can't add a bit of defensive versatility to his resume. Practicing secondbase is a no-brainer.

Maybe he should give LF another shot. Though he's an injury risk to us all out there-- I almost hurt myself falling out of my chair laughing...

The problem is we don't know what kind of hitter he is at this point b/c 2010 was a lost season, and in 2009 he was two very different hitters.

Just to make things clear, it isn't like Murphy played half a season at 2B before getting taken out. This was his second game at the position. The LF experiment lasted longer. We have nothing to suggest he's capable of playing there, and one traumatic injury in 2 games to suggest he isn't.
   36. Christopher Linden Posted: November 16, 2010 at 11:04 PM (#3691397)
I think the bottom-line disagreement between Sam & dp is different thoughts on Murphy's ceiling. Sam sees Murphy as a guy who will be (or will always be perceived as being) a reserve/utility player whose best chance to make real money is to expand his positional skill set. dp seems to think that Murphy has everyday potential, or at least enough of it to give it a real try.

Does anyone else think along dp's line? Anyone see Murphy as a guy for whom other teams would trade with the idea of making him their 130-game 3B?

Happy Base Ball
   37. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 16, 2010 at 11:12 PM (#3691411)
It's why traumatic, career-altering knee injuries happen so often at 2B.

Really? I can't think of one off the top of my head.

Who are you thinking of?
   38. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 11:17 PM (#3691415)
dp seems to think that Murphy has everyday potential, or at least enough of it to give it a real try.

This is more to acknowledge the bar for a corner lefty-batting bench player isn't particularly high. Every year mediocre hitters seem to get a good amount of ABs as the contingency plan at 1B/3B/DH and sometimes put together solid seasons. Busy at work right now or else I'd throw out a list. But we have had this conversation about Murphy before, I think early in the 2010 season, where others here suggested he'd be an OK option at 3B, where his offense wouldn't need to be as good, and he at least has a track record of fielding success. IIRC he was even suggested as an option, by others on this board, if they dealt Wright.

I'm not Sam M though; I never suggested Murphy has a batting title in his future or anything. I just think in with the stars aligned right he could succeed in that role; with the Mets, that role isn't in his future (no DH and Ike and Wright hopefully locked in at the corners).
   39. formerly dp Posted: November 16, 2010 at 11:24 PM (#3691434)
Really? I can't think of one off the top of my head.

Who are you thinking of?


Well, Murphy's was career-altering, so there's one. But maybe I'm putting too much weight on the Bill James article on Robbie Alomar from a while back. Or maybe my brain isn't firing on all cylinders right now. I'm open to being wrong on this, but it does seem that 2B in general don't age well compared even to SS, and I thought that was due to the toll it takes on their knees.
   40. Something Other Posted: November 17, 2010 at 05:41 AM (#3691756)
.Not that Murphy's the kind of guy to do that.
I'd like to think his agent might be, though.

Does anyone else think along dp's line? Anyone see Murphy as a guy for whom other teams would trade with the idea of making him their 130-game 3B?
Absolutely, though absolutely not as my only offseason plan, or as my Plan A. It seems like, being that he's a guy who had no role on the team last year (even before the injury he was the desperation fill-in at 1B), and was well on his way to playing his way off it after 2009, it would take very little to get Murphy at this point. As a decent backup corner guy whose upside is a pretty fair shot at being an average hitter for the position at 3B, Murphy'd be very much worth acquiring, given what he'd cost, for a team with either a complete hole at third and no money to fill it, or a team that has something like a promising but high-variance rookie (or a badly injured vet that may not be able to make it back--think Jason Bay if Bay was a 3Bman) they want to start at third next year with Murphy as the backup or as the fill-in starter in case the rookie collapses.

Not that there are an infinite number of players available, but trying Murphy at 2B rather than swapping him for another club's version of Murphy who can *already* play 2B the way Murphy can play 1B and 3B, is the definition of senseless.
   41. Sam M. Posted: November 17, 2010 at 05:49 AM (#3691766)
Not that there are an infinite number of players available, but trying Murphy at 2B rather than swapping him for another club's version of Murphy who can *already* play 2B the way Murphy can play 1B and 3B, is the definition of senseless.

If you have a particular player in mind, I'm all ears. Seriously -- I think that's a reasonable idea, if (a) the "2B version of Murphy" really is available, and (b) the team that has him needs a 1B/3B type, and (c) the GM for that team agree that their guy is relatively comparable to Murphy, and Sandy Alderson shares that POV.

And therein lies the rub. Is there really a player/team combination where the surplus second baseman (relatively major league ready) and the 3B/1B role are both present?
   42. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: November 17, 2010 at 06:00 AM (#3691776)
Trying Murphy out 2B seems like an okay idea to me. I mean why the heck not? If he stinks there, you have Ruben Tejada, Justin Turner, or perhaps even a low-cost pickup like Felipe Lopez to turn to for the season.

I really wonder if Turner is going to get a shot at second this year. Perhaps a more statistically inclined FO will give him the shot he didn't get under Minaya. Honestly, it makes way more sense to give him a shot and not bother worrying about whether or not Murphy can cut it defensively.
   43. Something Other Posted: November 17, 2010 at 06:11 AM (#3691783)
No one specific in mind, Sam, and I do readily grant that guy might not be available and those conditions may not apply, though there might be a little more overall flexibility in a 'Murphy AND someone' for another team's 2b equivalent, getting the Mets someone a bit better than Murphy's projection. Which would be nice. I also wouldn't rule out a three team deal to get it done. So, which assistant GM are we going to put onto this?
   44. Sam M. Posted: November 17, 2010 at 06:24 AM (#3691788)
BTW, the other thing to say about the comparison between trying to get Murphy some experience at 2B, v. trading him for a 2B, is this: it's not either/or. The Mets can try this experiment with him in winter ball, while also exploring trade options for a second baseman in the meantime (in talks that might involve Murphy in some deals, and might not involve him in others). As I see it, there is nothing at all wrong with them creating as many viable options as possible to fill that hole, including Murphy even if he's a long-shot, and at the same time potentially increasing his value. But I certainly agree that he shouldn't be either the only, or even the primary, option that they explore. That would be, if not senseless, at least bizarre.
   45. formerly dp Posted: November 17, 2010 at 06:57 PM (#3692051)
But I certainly agree that he shouldn't be either the only, or even the primary, option that they explore. That would be, if not senseless, at least bizarre.

Also, mean. Pelfrey doesn't need any more help giving up hits.

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