The 2011 season will soon be at it’s end and the focus will be on who will be on the field come Opening Day 2012 with Reyes being a key variable in deciding that.
While free agent signings or trades for specific players may play a key part in determining 2012′s look. I wanted to try and look at what is already here and see how they may fit into the 2012 team.
I decided to categorize them as 1st & 2nd choice starter and 1st & 2nd choice backup for each position.
- 1st Choice Starter: Ike Davis, LHB – The player I most missed in 2011 I look forward to seeing continue his development at 1st base in 2012.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Daniel Murphy, LHB – While Murphy’s glove leaves a lot to be desired I find that if for some reason Davis misses time due to say injury. Murphy has shown enough this year to believe if allowed to play everyday he can do 1 thing well and that is hit.
- 1st Choice Backup: Nick Evans, RHB – I don’t know why but I just have always been a fan of Evans and I like how his RHB at 1st may compliment the team.
- 2nd Choice Backup: Josh Satin, RHB – This year’s Sterling award winner Satin seems to be like Murphy in the sense that he has no real position. He will be 27 come December and I believe he will be Rule 5 eligible so it will be interesting how the Mets go about handling him but if he is on the team come Spring Training 2012 I would not be opposed to seeing Satin get a shot at being the back up 1st baseman.
- 1st Choice Starter: Ruben Tejada, RHB – Tejada’s future at 2nd will most likely depend on if the Mets retain Jose Reyes this off season. If your looking for the best glove at 2nd then in my opinion that has to be Tejada. Unlike in 2010 Tejada has shown me enough with the bat that I believe he will no longer look over-matched at the plate and as long as he can hit .250/.260 I think he will not hurt the Mets so long he does the little things when called upon.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Daniel Murphy, LHB – Once again Murphy is my 2nd choice as a starter. The reason I chose Murphy over say Justin Turner came down to my opinion that defensively at 2b I don’t think Turner has that much more upside than say Murphy so if it comes down to the bat I think Murphy has the better bat over Turner. In fact I think Murphy’s bat is so good that it should be considered the 2nd choice to start at 1st,2nd and 3b.
- 1st Choice Backup: Justin Turner, RHB – I find myself fighting with why do I think Turner is a better choice as a backup as opposed to a starter. The best I can do to try and rationalize my thinking on this is that I believe Turner will probably hit better playing sparingly than Murphy would.
- 2nd Choice Backup: Josh Satin, RHB – Again Satin in the “player without a position mode” I can see him playing the role of backup over say Havens. I see Havens only making the team if he is going to play everyday and at this time I am not sure I see Havens starting everyday over Tejada at 2nd in 2012.
- 1st Choice Starter: Jose Reyes, R/LHB – No explanation needed here. Just need to see if he indeed resigns with the Mets.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Ruben Tejada, RHB – If Tejada is the Opening Day SS in 2012 due to Reyes not resigning then I would expect a ripple effect to follow. The biggest of which could see Havens with a outside chance at being the starting 2nd baseman.
- 1st Choice Backup: Jordany Valdespin, LHB – Normally I would say Tejada as the 1st choice as backup but I would hope Tejada is starting either at 2nd or SS in 2012 and therefore won’t be available as a backup SS for the most part. Still I know very little about Valdespin other than he has played SS in AAA to be honest so he was more of not having a better in house alternative after you get past Reyes and Tejada.
- 2nd Choice Backup: Don’t really have one.
- 1st Choice Starter: David Wright, RHB – Again no explanation needed here. The only thing that remains to be seen is if he is traded in the off season.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Daniel Murphy, LHB – Just as with Reyes not resigning a Wright trade could see a ripple effect follow that could see Murphy playing 3rd base as the starting 3rd baseman.
- 1st Choice Backup: Justin Turner, RHB – Again I believe Turner will probably hit better playing sparingly as a backup than Murphy would.
- 2nd Choice Backup: Don’t really have one.
- 1st Choice Starter: Jason Bay, RHB – There are 16 million reasons why he is the 1st choice as the starting left fielder in 2012.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Lucas Duda, LHB – This is probably Duda’s best position considering this is where he played mostly before being called up by the Mets if I am not mistaken. Barring Bay being moved I hardly expect to see Duda here anytime soon.
- 1st or 2nd Choice Backup: I really have no clue.
- 1st Choice Starter: Angel Pagan, R/LHB – This is a position that I hope the Mets can upgrade via trade or free agency Pagan shows how thin the Mets are depth wise at CF. Nieuwenhuis is a hopeful but the jury remains out on how he will be after he recovers from the injury that ended his 2011 season.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Jason Pridie, LHB – Again the Mets need to create some depth in CF. I am not even going to attempt to pick a backup at this position.
- 1st Choice Starter: Lucas Duda, LHB – Duda will most likely have a strong chance to be the everyday Right-fielder in 2012. Quite frankly I am pretty excited to see if Duda along with Davis can combine to give the Mets 2 power hitting lefty bats in the lineup in 2012.
- 2nd Choice Starter: Fernando Martinez, LHB – Why not? At this point I don’t envision FMart a centerfielder with those knees.
- 1st Choice Backup: Don’t really have one and at this point I just want to wrap this post up anyways. Still odds are the backup will be some veteran free agent.
- 1st Choice Starter: Josh Thole, LHB – Another position where Mets have little depth. Time will tell if the Mets can upgrade the team at this position. I don’t know if I bring back Paulino for 2012 but the Mets in house alternatives are slim to none.
I am done. Now of course this is just like a 1st draft and none of these names are locks by a long shot. This was just something to get the ball rolling so to speak as to what in house alternatives exist. Feel free to add or remove as many names as you see fit. I am sure I am overlooking players from the Mets system since it is now 10 to midnight as I write this and I am just plain tired.