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Sunday, July 08, 2012

Sherman: Expect surprising Mets to look for internal or thrifty options as trade deadline nears

“Blake Forsythe!  But I just came from the hospital… you were in a coma!”  “That was my twin, you fool!” etc.

[The Mets] plan to call up Josh Edgin early in the second half to see if he can be the second lefty in the bullpen for which they have hungered. Jason Bay is due back July 17, and they hope he can provide righty balance to the lineup. Matt Harvey has probably reached the stage where, if necessary, he has a chance to help the major league rotation.

But the Mets have no good options to even pray on for the right-handed hitting catcher they crave or righty relief — unless Jenrry Mejia or Elvin Ramirez becomes much more viable … and soon.

So those are the two areas the Mets will need to concentrate upon and, The Post has learned, they already are very interested in Colorado catcher Ramon Hernandez, a long-time favorite of Sandy Alderson… Two other catchers the Mets are interested in, the Post has learned, are Boston’s Kelly Shoppach and Seattle’s Miguel Olivo…

As for righty relief, colleague Ken Davidoff reported last week that the Mets are open to a reunion with very available Brewers reliever Francisco Rodriguez. Besides that, there are the usual suspects available, such as Houston’s Brett Myers and Oakland’s Grant Balfour…

the best of the system, notably Harvey, Zack Wheeler and a few others, are off limits.  We will have to see what the industry thinks about their secondary group of prospects — such as Juan Lagares, Wilmer Flores, Wilfredo Tovar, Blake Forsythe, Jack Leathersich, Tyler Pill, Logan Verrett and Colin McHugh.  The fact the Mets are even finding out what the value of this group is says the following: It is July and they are contenders.

The District Attorney Posted: July 08, 2012 at 01:57 PM | 41 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mets, rumors

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   1. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: July 08, 2012 at 08:24 PM (#4176336)
We will have to see what the industry thinks about their secondary group of prospects — such as Juan Lagares, Wilmer Flores, Wilfredo Tovar, Blake Forsythe, Jack Leathersich, Tyler Pill, Logan Verrett and Colin McHugh.

I don't know much about those other guys but Flores is a little bit better than a secondary guy. It feels like he has been forever but he's only 20 and has a .390/.433/.576 batting line in AA in 67 plate appearances, .309/.355/.485 between AA and A in 339 plate appearances. Looks like he's taking a step forward.
   2. JJ1986 Posted: July 08, 2012 at 08:28 PM (#4176345)
What happened to Danny Ray Herrera? Only 3 games at Buffalo.
   3. formerly dp Posted: July 08, 2012 at 08:35 PM (#4176360)
I don't know much about those other guys but Flores is a little bit better than a secondary guy. It feels like he has been forever but he's only 20 and has a .390/.433/.576 batting line in AA in 67 plate appearances, .309/.355/.485 between AA and A in 339 plate appearances. Looks like he's taking a step forward.

Especially if he proves he can handle 2B...Flores is a potential long-term solution there, ETA probably 2014 barring another big step forward.

I was pretty vocal in the offseason about my disdain for Nickeas and he's done nothing but prove me right. On a sub-.500 team this wouldn't have mattered much, but it's amazing that the team can't find a better option.
   4. PreservedFish Posted: July 08, 2012 at 08:42 PM (#4176380)
Is Mike Nickeas the worst hitter in the majors? He's a career .237 hitter in AA, .211 in AAA, and .179 in the majors. He doesn't play much, but it still would have been nice to start the season with a real player in his role.
   5. pkb33 Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:08 PM (#4176428)
Why would you mess around with the declining KRod when you have Parnell coming of age right before your eyes? That seems like a horrible idea.
   6. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:20 PM (#4176450)
I'm not saying that K-Rod is the answer but the Mets are going to need more than Parnell even if he's actually "coming of age". Parnell is pitching almost exactly as well as he did in 2010 before regressing last year. The one thing that the Mets have are some options. Ramon Ramirez is back and Pedro Beato just got called up. Frank Francisco will be back soon. If the Mets can get some luck and have a couple of those guys step up, the bullpen should be OK. It's not like most of the guys who are available are going to be considerably better than them.

I'd prefer the Mets get a starter or an outfielder rather than another reliever.
   7. Lassus Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:24 PM (#4176460)
We need a bat more than a reliever, I think. Although it seems like a reliever would probably be cheaper and easier to get.
   8. PreservedFish Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:32 PM (#4176478)
Can't believe I'm saying this about such a shitty player, but Jason Bay might take care of some of the handedness lineup problems. The outfield should be:

Vs LHP
Bay/Torres/Hairston

Vs RHP
Bay?/Nieuwenhuis/Duda

Bay? could be Valdespin, although I doubt that Collins would do it.
   9. PreservedFish Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:34 PM (#4176481)
I don't understand what a new starter would do. The Mets have a good starting five right now. Unless you're talking about a guy that would jump in front of Niese in the playoff rotation, a really good pitcher, then they're not going to make a trade for a significant #6 pitcher. Matt Harvey would be my #6 at this point.
   10. Elvis Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:37 PM (#4176489)
In 16 games at Double-A, Flores has played 3 at second base.

Herrera out for the year with elbow (TJ surgery)

Hopefully Collins can give Ramirez another shot when things matter. He did a nice job of holding down the fort in Friday night's game and maybe he'll get some higher leverage innings going forward.

Pedro Beato's fastball is Neil Allen straight. It can work if he's getting his curve over.
   11. Elvis Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:41 PM (#4176496)
Chris Young is always an injury risk and the third time thru the order he's even worse than Hisanori Takahashi. I could see the Mets looking to upgrade from that, assuming they're not ready to call up Harvey.

Here are Bay's OPS numbers versus RHP since 2009:

.897
.748
,629
.558

There's no way he should be a full-time player at this point.
   12. The District Attorney Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4176498)
The article implies that the team likes Harvey enough that they think he can join the rotation this year. While I'm glad they're high on him, I think that given a) his age, b) the fact that it's simply easier to relieve and c) the acknowledged need for a righty RP, I'd rather have him start off in the major league bullpen. If Chris Young is somehow not yet injured in his next few starts, we can evaluate Young at that time and either stick with him or get some veteran inning-eater.

I'm disappointed (although certainly not surprised) with the article citing Bay as an OF answer. It says he would provide "righty balance", but "balance" is not a relevant issue when you have a bunch of platoon players, which seems to be the situation: Capt. Kirk/Duda vs. righties, Hairston/Bay vs. lefties, Torres equally bad both ways. The article contemplates going Bay/Torres/Hairston vs. lefties. I am happy starting Duda in RF vs. lefties, and am not that happy starting Hairston or Bay in LF vs. righties.
   13. formerly dp Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:49 PM (#4176508)
I agree, I don't see any need for another starter.

Valdespin looks like a fun player. Great to see him in cf today.

To me, it all depends on the cost of the upgrade. You gotta give to get, and if a Beltran for Wheeler type deal presents itself, I think they should hold their cards.
   14. PreservedFish Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:55 PM (#4176523)
The article implies that the team likes Harvey enough that they think he can join the rotation this year. While I'm glad they're high on him, I think that given a) his age, b) the fact that it's simply easier to relieve and c) the acknowledged need for a righty RP, I'd rather have him start off in the major league bullpen.


I've never seen the guy throw an inning, but Jeurys Familia, to me, looks like a potential bullpen beast. He throws very hard, only has a couple good pitches, has control problems ... he's like the perfect prototype of a converted reliever, and every scouting report of him has always mentioned the possibility that he moves to the pen. There's a chance that he's instantly awesome in the role, and as our 3rd best SP prospect, we don't have to worry quite as much about how the change would affect his development.
   15. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: July 08, 2012 at 09:57 PM (#4176528)
Bay? could be Valdespin, although I doubt that Collins would do it.

Valdespin did start today over Captain Kirk in center. He's got some tools and has some pop. If he can hit a little bit while Bay is out, I think Collins will play him.

I've never seen the guy throw an inning, but Jeurys Familia, to me, looks like a potential bullpen beast. He throws very hard, only has a couple good pitches, has control problems ... he's like the perfect prototype of a converted reliever, and every scouting report of him has always mentioned the possibility that he moves to the pen. There's a chance that he's instantly awesome in the role, and as our 3rd best SP prospect, we don't have to worry quite as much about how the change would affect his development.

I wouldn't like that. Familia has shown decent enough control in the past (3.1 BB/9 in 124 IP last season with a k/bb better than 3 between A-AA ball). He's only 22, the same age as Wheeler, and his BB/9 is better for his career despite being at more advanced levels. His future might be in the bullpen but I'd wait. Of course, there's no reason why he couldn't help out this year as a reliever and go back to being a starter.

What's going on with Mejia?
   16. PreservedFish Posted: July 08, 2012 at 10:00 PM (#4176531)
I just really hope that there's an understanding that at this point in his career, Jason Bay is pretty much a poor man's Scott Hairston. It would be very frustrating to see him start every single game. I like Collins, but it's kind of what I expect.

Of course, there's no reason why he couldn't help out this year as a reliever and go back to being a starter.


Yeah, that's what I mean.
   17. zonk Posted: July 08, 2012 at 10:18 PM (#4176565)
What would all-star making the ML minimum 1B/LF/RF Bryan LaHair fetch?
   18. PreservedFish Posted: July 08, 2012 at 10:29 PM (#4176581)
LaHair hits lefty, so he's the last thing the Mets need.
   19. The District Attorney Posted: July 08, 2012 at 10:32 PM (#4176585)
That doesn't bother me. Like I said, it's a platoon situation anyway. The problem with LaHair is that I suspect he is an inadequate LF defender. Especially with Duda already in RF, a butcher kind of defeats the purpose.
   20. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: July 08, 2012 at 10:34 PM (#4176587)
I wonder what the Mets could get for Lucas Duda. He's a solid hitter but he's a 1B/DH and the Mets already have Ike.
   21. Benji Posted: July 09, 2012 at 12:58 AM (#4176700)
I don't want trades except maybe for Ramon Hernandez. Balfour looks tired already, Myers is no big improvement on Francisco and Street hates the bench coach and is always getting hurt. And as far as "that big right handed hitter" who's out there? Frenchy, Cody Ross, Quentin? Are any of them worth a future major leaguer?
   22. The District Attorney Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:04 AM (#4176702)
Quentin probably is, he's a helluva hitter. (Another defensive butcher, though.)
   23. PreservedFish Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:20 AM (#4176708)
And as far as "that big right handed hitter" who's out there?


Honestly, I think the team will be looking at Bay for this. They're not going to bring in someone like Frenchy or Cody Ross, and disrupt the team chemistry in the process.
   24. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:10 AM (#4176714)
I wonder what the Mets could get for Lucas Duda. He's a solid hitter but he's a 1B/DH and the Mets already have Ike.


Pirates would be glad to give you some relief help for him, if that's of interest.
   25. Ravecc Posted: July 09, 2012 at 12:07 PM (#4176976)
The bench has 4 middle infielders, Torres and Mike Nickeas. Sandy has about a week to address that redundancy since Bay is coming back on the 17th. Surely some team can use Cedeno or Quintanilla – I really don’t want Valdespin to go down just because it’s easy.

Boy, the Pagan trade looks awful now given the negative contributions of both RamRam and Torres.
   26. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: July 09, 2012 at 12:19 PM (#4176994)
Could we interest you in a shiny new Jonny Gomes?
   27. Lassus Posted: July 09, 2012 at 12:46 PM (#4177035)
I hate that my initial impression that I was being proven wrong on Torres has been proven wrong.

What the hell is a RamRam?

How Nickeas has this backup job is the biggest mystery in baseball. An inanimate carbon rod professional poker player would hit better.
   28. SoSH U at work Posted: July 09, 2012 at 12:57 PM (#4177044)
What the hell is a RamRam?


Rarney Rurrle's son?

   29. Ravecc Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:13 PM (#4177056)
Ramon Ramirez

==

I wish the Mets would quit dicking around with Wilmer Flores and put him in LF already.
   30. A triple short of the cycle Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:25 PM (#4177063)
Could we interest you in a shiny new Jonny Gomes?

Or perhaps some hot Coco?
   31. Swoboda is freedom Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:32 PM (#4177067)
How Nickeas has this backup job is the biggest mystery in baseball.

Justin Turner might disagree with you. His only contribution seems to be the pie in the face gag.
   32. Zeba Zeba Eata Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:40 PM (#4177077)
Turner's hitting .281/.320/.354. Nickeas is hitting .172/.250/.237, and it's somewhat remarkable that his average is that high. He just can't hit, and the Mets really could use a decent-hitting platoon partner for Thole to help offset all of the other lefties.

But I still think the biggest need is for bullpen help - it doesn't have to be a flashy "used to be a closer" person, just anyone better than Miguel Batista or Jeremy Hefner. Which should be pretty easy to obtain.
   33. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:49 PM (#4177090)
the Mets really could use a decent-hitting platoon partner for Thole to help offset all of the other lefties.


This sounds like a job for Kelly Shoppach!
   34. PreservedFish Posted: July 09, 2012 at 01:54 PM (#4177098)
Which should be pretty easy to obtain.


Well, we thought that Rauch and Ramirez and Francisco would be good enough.
   35. Ravecc Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:09 PM (#4177119)
If they weren’t getting someone to displace Francisco, ie Street, then they shouldn’t get anyone at all.

Sandy would first have to tell TC that they’ve found and destroyed those photos Batista was holding so TC would stop pitching him in high leverage situations. Francisco, Parnell, Rauch and Byrdak – those are the high-lev guys. They need another lefty, but if they fill that with Edgin, couldn’t they just fill that back-end spot from Ramirez/Beato/Mejia/Ramirez/Hefner?

It amuses me that they stuck with Ike for so long while he was stuck on the interstate and everyone was screaming for him to be optioned. But one fat pitch to Russell Martin, and TC put Jon Rauch behind “emergency use only” glass case.
   36. thetailor Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:16 PM (#4177127)
The fact that we are even talking about this just boggles my mind.

I wish the Wilpons were smart enough to know that now is the time to strike and put in $10M of their own money to keep the Mets competitive. I mean, my god, they are off-the-charts lucky that this team is contending and that Madoff is being pushed so quickly into the background.
   37. PreservedFish Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4177131)
It amuses me that they stuck with Ike for so long while he was stuck on the interstate and everyone was screaming for him to be optioned. But one fat pitch to Russell Martin, and TC put Jon Rauch behind “emergency use only” glass case.


I like the confidence they showed in Ike. He should be a part of this team for years into the future.
   38. PreservedFish Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4177134)
I wish the Wilpons were smart enough to know that now is the time to strike and put in $10M of their own money to keep the Mets competitive.


Who could they get? The only really exciting name I've heard is Justin Upton, but he would cost Wheeler+, I would imagine.
   39. thetailor Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4177139)
Who could they get?

I'm thinking straight up money transactions -- e.g. eating some salary for Ramon Hernandez so that we don't have to give up players. At least that way, we raise our performance floor a little bit (as opposed to raising the performance ceiling) and all it costs is Wilpon cash.

As for the rest of the swaps involving prospects and stuff, I've got my fingers crossed but trust Sandy for the most part.
   40. Lassus Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:29 PM (#4177142)
But one fat pitch to Russell Martin, and TC put Jon Rauch behind “emergency use only” glass case.

This seems wrong. He sucked for a lot more than one pitch to Russell Martin.


I like the confidence they showed in Ike. He should be a part of this team for years into the future.

I remain... how shall we say? Hopeful but not entirely optimistic on Ike.
   41. Dog on the sidewalk Posted: July 09, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4177165)
An inanimate carbon rod professional poker player would hit better.

Sure, I'd listen if the Mets called.

I wish they had brought Paulino back. He fit so well with Thole. Ramon Hernandez would work too. I can't imagine he'd cost much.

As far as the pitching, I vote for using Harvey/Wheeler/Familia out of the pen down the stretch if needed and hoping that all the arms Sandy brought in this offseason start pitching like the average-ish relievers they're all supposed to be.

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