Yes, yes - another Jason Bay post. This is less about what to do with him for the long-term, which is a question for the off-season and beyond, but what to do between now and season's end. My view is that the long-term interests of the team warrant benching Jason Bay so that the Mets can have a closer and better look at players who might - or might not - be useful pieces for the team in upcoming years.
This post will not re-hash stats regarding Jason Bay's continued mediocrity (at best). I assume we're all familiar with them, and more so with the fact that every time he gets on a quasi-hot streat, making us think he's finally "got it together," he follows it up with a period of unfathomable suckitude. I have no idea if Bay will ever figure things out, or whether moving in the fences at Citi might help him. The point is, the fences aren't moving between now and October, and how can the Mets best serve their long-term interests now?
What really got me thinking about this was Nick Evans' big game against Philly. I have no idea if Nick Evans will be a useful Major League player. What I do know is that sitting him on the bench isn't the way to find out. That's underscored by the fact that until Wednesday, Nick was OPS-ing .779, and now he's OPS-ing .914. When one game can swing his overall numbers that much, it's clear that his overall major league stats this year can't be evaluated due to their small sample size.
Which brings us back to Bay, to whom no small-sample-size caveats apply. We know what Jason Bay is, at least for now, which a touch over a replacement player (0.4 WAR this year). Maybe at some point he figures things out, maybe he doesn't. Maybe he plays winter ball this year (although I doubt it); maybe he comes back to Spring Training a new man. In any event, if that happens and he rediscovers things, we'll all be happy. But I'd say the odds are against it after 2 years of mediocrity. And given those long odds, I'd much rather see if some of our younger players are viable options for LF next year and beyond in the event that he doesn't figure things out. So why not give Nick Evans a glove and stick him out there? Call up Josh Satin and let him play first. Or stick Satin in left, whichever one you think might actually be able to play passable defense. At this point, what do we really have to lose?