There have been recent reports that the Mets are very interested in bringing back Carlos Delgado to play 1B. Matt Cerrone of MetsBlog believes it’ll take $5M guaranteed with $5M to $8M in incentives for a guy who hardly played in 2009 and should be a DH.
If the Mets are indeed looking to upgrade at 1B, IÂ prefer the Mets sign Adam LaRoche to a two year $17M deal. Buster Olney tweeted that LaRoche turned down a 2 year $17M deal with the Giants.Â With the Mariners acquiring Casey Kotchman, and the Giants discussing alternatives, Olney believes the Orioles are LaRoche’s only option. I’d imagine LaRoche would prefer to play for a contender, which may have something to do with turning down the Giants offer.
With Delgado, you are hoping he has a good year and makes his incentives. If he does, it’ll cost $10M to $13M. If Delgado doesn’t reach his incentives, the Mets are out $5M that could’ve been spent elsewhere and they get no improvement at 1B.
With LaRoche, there aren’t any injury concerns and he is an average defender at 1B. LaRoche would be less expensive than Delgado, and give youÂ decent production. LaRoche’s OPS for the past 3 seasons is .803, .841 and .843.
Some may argue that LaRoche would block Ike Davis, but that’s not enough of a reason not to sign LaRoche. Can anyone here honestly tell me, that they think Davis would be ready to be the Opening Day starter next year after only one good year in the minors? Wouldn’t you be more confident if Davis had 3 solid seasons in the minors (2009-2011). Even if Davis does great in the minors in 2010, how would it hurt him to spend part of 2011 in the minors? Plus, if necessaryÂ it wouldn’t be impossible to trade LaRoche in 2011.
Personally, I think Daniel Murphy is a serviceable 1B and may surprise many given a chance to play a full season at 1B with an opportunity to continue his 2nd half surge. However, if the Mets are looking to improve over Murphy, they should sign Adam LaRoche and not Carlos Delgado.
Update: One of the great things about TRDMB, is that there is always an opportunity to learn. Prismo points us to this FanGraphs article, which suggests that LaRoche will not be worth the offer the Giants made, and that “Ryan Garko projects as a superior hitter to LaRoche and should come much cheaper.” Signing Garko would seem to be the better move for the Mets. He would provide added 1B depth should Murphy have troubles, he could be the RH 1B if Murphy struggles against lefties, he would come cheaper than LaRoche or Delgado, and there wouldn’t be any worries about “blocking” Ike Davis.
Fongy says, “Sign Garko!”