It has been brought up on multiple occasions this year: What exactly is Nick Evans up to these days?
He was once a relatively highly touted prospect in the minors for the Mets and his usefulness rather has seemed to diminish. However, he hasn't let that the rain on his parade bring down his performance, which may now hold a new meaning to the organization.
Evans has developed into a first baseman, after the Mets had experimented with him in the outfield over the last couple of years. This is the problem for Evans' chances at making it with the Mets. His road to the Majors is blocked by top prospect Ike Davis, whose maturity and power have secured him a much-deserved spot in the lineup every day. And there is no room in the Mets outfield or even the bench at this point.
So, exactly what is Nick Evans up to these days? Well for a guy with little to no hope of making it with the Mets, Evans is doing pretty well for himself. Starting at first base for the AA Binghamton Mets, Evans has put together good-looking numbers, numbers that would earn him a promotion with any other organization.
On the year through 63 games, Evans is hitting .286 with 12 homers and 38 RBIs. In his last 10 games, he's batting .409, looking a little like Jason Bay with no home runs, but still a valuable component to his lineup.
Of course for what seems like a situation in which Evans has no defined role in the future for the Mets, his numbers at least mean something.
The significance of Evans' success in the minors this year is clear. He likely represents one of the biggest trade chips in the Mets farm system. The preservation of his AA stats indicates this. If he were to be a part of the Mets future, he'd be at AAA or sitting on the Mets bench right now.
Padding his numbers at Binghamton will make him look more attractive to any potential trade partners for the Mets. He could be a key player in the Mets efforts to swing a deal for a star pitcher, or a pitcher from a rebuilding American League team that is thirsty for minor league outfielders that show promise.
If the Mets were to jump on Fausto Carmona or Jake Westbrook from the Cleveland Indians, or even Baltimore Orioles Jeremy Guthrie or Kevin Millwood, Nick Evans will be a major factor in a package of prospects that the Mets could offer.
It might not be too far off in saying that Nick Evans' days with the Mets organization are coming to an end, but he's had a nice run with the club. It'll be time for him to move on to an organization that has the luxury of giving him the experience he deserves at the Major League level.
This article was also featured on The Daily Stache.