With about two weeks left in Spring Training, it’s time for me to give my 25-man roster for Opening Day 2010 for the New York Mets.
1) CF – Angel Pagan- I’m going with Pagan over Castillo becuase of Pagan’s success last season in this spot. Pagan hit .316 with a .358 OBP as the Mets leadoff hitter last season compared to Castillo who hit .216 with a .322 OBP.
2) 2B – Luis Castillo – Hit .326 with a .402 OBP from the number two hole last season, where he spent a majority of his time. Great eye at the plate, can take pitches so Pagan can steal some bases.
3) 3B – David Wright – His power seems to be back and he is the best hitter on this team. Looking forward to a great year from him.
4) LF – Jason Bay – Has more power than Wright, but strikes out more with a lower average. But he does walk more. Bay has that combination of a lot of strikeouts and a lot of walks every year.
5) RF – Jeff Francoeur – Close between him and Murphy for this spot, but I like Murphy, because he has a better eye at the plate, in the 6th hole because it breaks up Francoeur and Barajas, who have very low OBP.
6) 1B – Daniel Murphy – I also like Murphy here because he is left handed, which breaks up the string of right handed batters in the line-up.
7) C – Rod Barajas – Will split time with Hank White, but Barajas will be the Mets full time catcher. Hit 20 home runs last season so he’s got some pop, but I doubt he’ll repeat that performance.
8 ) SS – Ruben Tejada – Better glove than Cora and he’s faster, with a bat that will be just as good.
9) P – Johan Santana – Johan.
1) C – Henry Blanco – Great defensive catcher and not too bad with the bat either. The combination of Barajas and Blanco might be the best defensive catching tandem in the game.
2) OF – Gary Matthews Jr. - Didn’t like the move at first, but he’s performed well in Spring Training and will be a solid 4th outfielder, especially at the price.
3) IF Alex Cora – Veteran leadership and a good player to have off the bench. $2M for him might be a bit much though.
4) IF/OF Fernando Tatis – Not sure he deserves to be here, but because of his contract he’ll make the team. Not really fair, but that’s how these things work.
5) 1B/OF Chris Carter – Can play just as many positions as Frank Catalanotto and has shown just as much power as Mike Jacobs this spring, with a much better batting average than both of them put together. Solid left handed bat off the bench and can play first and the outfield.
1) Johan Santana – Johan!
2) Mike Pelfrey – He’s not a number two pitcher, but hopefully he can pitch like its 2008. I don’t think last year reflected his true abilities because of the fact that it was his second full season in the majors, and he was the only starting pitcher in the rotation to stay relatively healthy the whole year, putting all the pressure on him.
3) Oliver Perez – Please be good… has the potential to be a very good pitcher, just needs to get a more consistent release on the ball. Hopefully all the hard work he put into this offseason pays off. If not… then the Mets are in trouble.
4) John Maine – He has to keep his walks down and his self esteem up.
5) Jonathon Niese – Though he hasn’t pitched great in spring he has shown us how good he can be. Young, very talented left-handed pitcher with a very high potential. Could end up being the Mets number two starter by the end of the season.
CL: Francisco Rodriguez – Looking to rebound after his worst season in the bigs. Had a great first half, but a terrible second half.
SU: Kiko Calero – Good pitcher, just needs to stay healthy. If he repeats his 2009 performance the Mets are in great shape.
SU: Ryota Igarashi – Has looked pretty good in spring, has good stuff.
RH: Nelson Figueroa – Has pitched great this spring, I can’t leave him off the roster.
LH: Pat Misch – See Figueroa.
LH: Pedro Feliciano – Not many people in baseball are better at what Pedro does. He seems to pitch everyday and he gets the tough left-hand hitters out.
LR: Hisanori Takahashi – A left-handed pitcher who can come into a game and throw strikes? Yes, please. Has had a great spring and looks like he’s the type of player that can make Omar Minaya look like a genius.
See You Soon:
Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, and Kelvim Escobar (hopefully). What should I say about Reyes and Beltran? Reyes is one of the best short stops in the game and Beltran is the best center fielder in the game. Get well soon guys and stay healthy. If Escobar can pitch at all this year I’ll be happy. Has potential to be a great pitcher, just can’t stay on the field.
Maybe Next Year (Or Sooner):
Ike Davis, Jenrry Mejia, Bobby Parnell, and Josh Thole. Davis should be the starting first baseman and Thole should be the starting catcher by 2011. I hope Mejia will be the Mets’ set-up man in 2011, and no sooner. I don’t think he is ready to come up yet, he’s still very young. I also think they should make him into a reliever down in the minors because I see him as the future closer of this team. Parnell needs to go down to the minors and work on a second pitch. He has a lot of talent, wouldn’t be shocked if he made the team, hopefully he can get it all together.
Mike Jacobs, Frank Catalanotto, Russ Adams and Sean Green.
Omir Santos went from the starting catcher on the Mets, to the third string catcher in AAA, all because of Rod Barajas. Feel bad for him because he’s a very good player. Maybe the Mets can trade him and get a prospect for him. If not, he’s a great guy to call up if and when Barajas or Blanco go on the DL.