Friday, March 11, 2011

Bats to the Future: Are These New York Mets Stars on the Rise?

    While I was watching today's spring training game between the New York Mets and Florida Marlins, there were two things that jumped out at me. First, the fact that the Marlins will have some very long days in the field this year, as they have in past years. Second, if you look at it, the Mets do actually have some homegrown talent looming on the horizon, if not ready to knock down the door to the big leagues.

    Earlier this week, I talked about Lucas Duda as a possible replacement or stop gap move, should Carlos Beltran be unable to give it a go, when the bell rings for Opening Day on Aprill 1st. Well, I will even take it a step further by saying that Duda could be a long term solution, if and when the Mets decide to unload Beltran, and his remaining contract on another team – this is greatly assuming that the Mets take a nose dive in the standings, sometime this season. Duda has shown considerable power from the left side of the plate, both in spring, and last year as a mid-season call-up. Could be a sign of the future in the Mets outfield? I certainly will not rule it out.

    Now, that brings me to a couple of candidates for the second base job in Justin Turner and Brad Emaus. While neither of them have jumped out at anyone in spring, they certainly have to be considered for the future. They are both still very young, just as some current Mets were, not too long ago.

    There is a guy that I have always liked, and that's Nick Evans. He's someone that can certainly hold his own with the bat, and always seems to find his way somewhere in the mix, at least over the last couple of seasons, even though he has not been able to stick with the big club for any extended length of time. Just maybe, this season will prove to be different. Time will tell.

    Now, while I do not consider Dillon Gee a hot prospect, he certainly has as good a chance as anyone to make the back end of this rotation, if he can pitch well enough. I think the same would go for a guy like Pat Misch, especially if Oliver Perez gets banished to the bullpen permanently.

    There are certainly other names that you can throw into the discussion, and I will leave that up to you guys. For right now, those were the prime suspects that I was thinking of.

    If you can imagine for a second – a lot of those young guys, to go along with the youth that's already there, such as Josh Thole, Ike Davis, and even David Wright and Jose Reyes, who are still in their 20s. Of course, the only question remaining is does that make a championship team? Hard question to answer, I would think.

    Now, by some miracle, if guys like Fernando Martinez and Rueben Tejada round into form, that would make things all the better. Being that those 2 guys were just reassigned back to the minors, don't count on it happening anytime soon.

    Feel free to pass along your thoughts, either here, or on my Facebook page. Until next time...

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