FanShot

Roster-crunching

29

So it seems like every time we talk about a potential roster crunch, someone re-aggravates something or another injury comes up. So although it's tempting the fates, I'm curious what the Mets will do when/if Cedeno and Tejada come back over the next week or so. Potential candidates for demotion are presumably Quintanilla, Valdespin, Turner, and maybe (but probably not) Rottino. At this point, given that Quintanilla has cooled down a bit and given that we don't need 3 shortshops, I'd think that he'd be one of the 2 to go. Valdespin would logically be the second if the Mets aren't planning on starting him - but I'm curious to see what happens over the next few days as he's coming off the 2-extra-base-hit game yesterday. I wouldn't be surprised if Collins gives him 2 or 3 starts to see what happens. With Murphy struggling both at the plate and in the field and with the 3rd OF spot against righties basically up for grabs for a month until Baxter comes back, there are 2 ways Valdespin can work his way into the lineup if he can manage to swing a decent bat, and his power potential and speed give us assets that we currently lack. Obviously, his plate discipline is woeful, but right now the alternatives in the 3rd OF spot vs righties are Torres and Hairston, with neither offering much offensively (again, just vs. righties; Hairston is murder on lefties), and Murphy is providing nothing at the plate or in the field at 2B. And you could make an argument that with more at bats as a starter, Valdespin might not be quite as impatient since he won't be trying to make an impression with every AB (although he's never going to draw many walks). If Valdespin were to stay, then perhaps Turner would be sent down since his skill set as a righty utility infielder is completely redundant if Tejada, Cedeno, and Rottino are all on the team.

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