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The greatest need for the Mets was to find a power bat to protect David Wright in the lineup.
Their answer was Curtis Granderson, agreeing to a four-year, $60 million deal with the outfielder. He was limited to 61 games in 2013, producing a .229/.317/.407 line in 214 at-bats, but his successful track record made the Mets comfortable enough to sign him.
Granderson has hit at least 19 home runs in a season seven different times, including two 40-homer seasons with the New York Yankees. It’s not expected that he’ll continue hitting home runs at that rate in the more spacious Citi Field, but somewhere between 20 and 30 bombs is not an unrealistic number.
He provides the protection for Wright that Terry Collins desired. Instead of pitching around the third baseman to get to an unproven and inconsistent Ike Davis, opponents will have to deal with Granderson instead.
Similar to the situation with Colon, the free-agent market for position players is overpriced this winter, to say the least. Jacoby Ellsbury signed a $153 million deal, Shin-Soo Choo netted $130 million and Robinson Cano cashed in the most with a cool $240 million.
Considering how much money other teams have been spending to get elite power bats, the Mets lucked out with Granderson. His injury-filled 2013 probably dropped him into the Mets' price range. He’s also a great veteran clubhouse presence to help Wright develop and be an example for the young players.
There is risk with his propensity to strike out and increasing age over the life of his contract, but it was another risk worth taking to beef up their lineup.
There are still questions to be answered before this team hits the field for the start of the regular season, but this winter activity by the front office is refreshing to see. The moves made thus far this offseason have given Collins the most proven talent to work with since he became manager.
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