Solving the Mets' Problems: The Eight-Step Solution
Let me start off by apologizing. Work has been crazy, but I am back. I am not going to let the naysayers keep me from posting, so there. I am here, and I am ready to go. I decided that today would be as good a day as any to construct my offseason guide for what the Mets need to do. I am going to go step by step for what may be a cost-effective and solid way of getting this team back together. This team has money to spend, but we all know that the Wilpons have been swindled in the Bernie Madoff scheme a lot more then we are being lead to believe. Let’s start off with what has already been done.
1) SAY GOODBYE TO JJ AND EXERCISE PELFREY’S OPTION:
These moves were both no brainers. A lot of people seemed to think that the Mets were going to exercise the option on Putz solely for the purpose of marketing him to other teams, but there is a slight problem with that. Putz has no value, and now he may have to settle for a contract from somebody looking to take a gamble. This was a nice move to set the Mets up to spend some money on a solid reliever to replace him. More on that later. Now it’s time for moves the Mets should make, starting with the ones of larger magnitude.
2) SIGN JASON BAY TO PLAY LEFT FIELD
I am one of the few people that seems to prefer Bay over Holliday. And no, it doesn’t have anything to do with the dropped fly ball that Holliday had in the post season. I just love Bay’s compact swing, and I think he would be a beast at Citi Field. He has an ability to hit to all fields, and his defense has been better than what was previously advertised. He would be a very nice guy to slip in somewhere between 3-5 in the lineup.
3) SIGN BENGIE MOLINA TO PLAY CATCHER
I know what you are going to say. He is fat and old, and while both of those statements may be true, he is a good hitter that knows how to handle a pitching staff. Schneider was pretty good at working with the pitchers, but my grandmother has a better bat. The Mets can ill afford to have a guy in there that is going to be an automatic out, so Bengie would be a nice fit. The key here would be to keep him fresh, so keeping a guy like Santos around as the backup would probably be a smart plan. I know we saw some nice things from Thole, but I really think he might benefit from another year in the minors to keep going and learning. This is a guy who needs to play everyday at whatever level he is at.
4) SIGN ORLANDO CABRERA TO REPLACE ALEX CORA
The versatility is what makes Cabrera a nice option. I know Cora did well in his role as a fill in, he is aging and his clock seems to be ticking. We saw what could happen if he was thrown into a prominent role. While he was a good leader, his numbers dropped as he got more and more exposed. Cabrera could be a nice guy to give Castillo, Reyes and Wright the occasional day off. I would also let him take ground balls at first, which is another problem we need to address.
5) SHOW TRUST IN DANIEL MURPHY
The Mets can really afford two big offensive signings, but we both know that it isn’t going to happen. I like what we saw out of Murphy last season. We saw him get into quite a funk, but he was able to dig himself out of the rut and he eventually would make his stats climb to a respectable level. The kid clearly has talent, and if the Mets come into next season healthy and with another bopper like Bay, they can afford to have Murphy hit sixth. He could be a dangerous hitter from there. His patience bodes very well.
6) RE-SIGN COREY SULLIVAN TO BE FOURTH OUTFIELDER
I like what I saw out of him last year. He was a solid fielder for us who showed some spurts of power. He can hit, and he is versatile in being able to fill in out there. Along with Angel Pagan, the Mets are pretty set out there. With a starting outfield of Bay, Beltran and Francoeur and those two on the bench, I would be comfortable.
7) SIGN ONE OF JASON MARQUIS/JOEL PINEIRO TO BE IN ROTATION
I know everyone wants Lackey, but he may command upwards of $15 million. If the Mets invest big money in an outfielder, then they are going to be more willing to explore second-tiered guys. Marquis has a history with Jeff Francouer, who said that Marquis was dying to pitch for the Mets. With his ground ball tendencies, Citi Field would really be a nice place for him to pitch. Then you have Santana, and you allow Maine, Pelfrey and Perez the chance to duke it out with some veterans you bring aboard for depth.
8) SIGN JOE BEIMEL AND OCTAVIO DOTEL TO ROUND OUT BULLPEN
That could be the final step to success. I know what you are asking. Why would I bring aboard Beimel if the Mets have Feliciano? Maybe because it’s not human to have a guy work like Pedro does. The Mets have been ecstatic with what they have gotten out of him, but another year of this treatment might lean to burnout, and then we might face the scary truth of allowing our righties to pitch to lefties. That would be catastrophic. Dotel has said he’d like to return to New York, and as long as he’s healthy, he might be a nice guy to step in the void left by Putz.
There’s a lot to do. I know a lot of you are going to disagree, but let me ask you. What would you do to fix this team?
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