We have less than three weeks remaining before Opening Day and the roster is beginning to take shape. If we assume the Mets will carry 12 pitchers that leaves us with 13 spots for position players. Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran are likely to begin the season on the disabled list, so our starting lineup looks like this in some order or another:
- Luis Castillo
- Alex Cora
- Angel Pagan
- David Wright
- Jason Bay
- Jeff Francoeur
- Daniel Murphy
- Rod Barajas/Henry Blanco
That's nine so far with four additional bench spots to fill. Fernando Tatis and Gary Matthews Jr. are locks, which leaves just two openings for the rest of the field. Smart money seems to be on Mike Jacobs and Ruben Tejada to round out the 25-man roster, but nothing is set in stone just yet.
Shawn Bowman, Andy Green, Mike Hessman, Mike Cervenak, Jesus Feliciano, Josh Thole, Luis Hernandez, and Kirk Nieuwenhuis were all reasigned to minor league camp earlier in the week. I removed Jolbert Cabrera and Chris Coste from the list because they're not really playing and there's no chance they'll actually make the team.
|Russ Adams, IF||Adams is probably a poor man's Fernando Tatis: He won't embarrass you in the corner infield or outfield, but the Mets already have Tatis so Adams will be shuttled to Triple-A soon enough.|
|Chris Carter, 1B*||He's hitting a ton but isn't actually getting much playing time, which probably tells you all you need to know about how the Mets feel about him. With Murphy, Tatis, and Jacobs all in queue ahead there isn't really room for Carter right now anyway.|
|Frank Catalanotto, OF||He may be a Proven Veteran™, but he'll be plying his trade in Buffalo when camp breaks.|
|Ike Davis, 1B||.692 BABIP doesn't look sustainable. Still, he's hitting the crap out of the ball.|
|Nick Evans, 1B/OF*||Who?|
|Anderson Hernandez, IF*||Tejada's emergence as the likely Opening Day starter is bad news for Hernandez, who probably won't care for the early April weather in Buffalo.|
|Mike Jacobs, 1B||Batting .250/.429/.625 with just a .167 BABIP. Five walks and just two strikeouts in 21 plate appearances doesn't sound right, but I double-checked it.|
|Fernando Martinez, OF*||1.678 OPS this spring, but he'll begin the season in the minors.|
|Jason Pridie, OF*||Solid .476 slugging for someone with Pridie's defensive reputation. .273 on-base percentage is woeful. Could be a decent option as a fifth outfielder/defensive replacement.|
|Shawn Riggans, C||He's basically a bullpen catcher in camp, netting just four at-bats so far. Maybe fifth or sixth on the depth chart, so don't expect to see him again ever.|
|Omir Santos, C*||Santos is hitting a ton in limited action, and if the Mets don't trade him he might be a useful guy to have on the farm. You know, in case they ever need someone to hit dingers off Papelbon.|
|Ruben Tejada, SS||He's hitting .357 in spring training action with a gaudy .400 BABIP. He's the favorite to start at shortstop in Jose Reyes's absence, so let's hope his glove is all it's said to be.|
= Chance of making the Mets is unchanged.
= Chance of making the Mets is going down.
= Chance of making the Mets is going up.
* = player on 40-man roster