I-I-I'm hunting, looking for a Ca-no, this is not very awesome!
A bit of reference for those who are unaware:
Thrift shopping and ineffective shopping can characterize the last few Mets offseasons. That should change this offseason with payroll flexibility and this is how it should happen! Welcome to amazins8669's AAOP.
And cause Thrift Shop is an awesome song I will post the obligatory memes along the way to lighten up what will probably be another dreary offseason courtesy of your friendly neighborhood Wilponzis. So let's get started.
Fred Wilpon's AAOP
The Mets have to get some bats. Whether it be via Free Agency, Traid, or thrift shopping we cannot have an offense that ranked 23rd in wRC+ or 29th in wOBA. That sucks, it's plain and simple. We could have 5 healthy Matt Harvey and that offense wouldn't cut the cheese(Besides Matt Harvey batting .300/.400/.670). So let's get down to how we are going to get some bats (and some arms) and make this team awesome for next year.
Out of these we should tender contracts to the following:
Lucas Duda(1.8 million, traded)
Bobby Parnell(3.2 million)
Dillon Gee(3.5 million)
Eric Young Jr. (1.9 million)
Ruben Tejada(1 million)
Justin Turner(800 K) (Hopefully this does not happen to the Red Headed Fellow with the all time record for wPIE+)
Daniel Murphy(5.8 million)
Ike Davis(3.1 million, traded)
How could I dare non-tender Scott "Gramps" Atchison you ask me? Well he did commit the horrible offense of attempted baby-slaughter...
Also back in Atchison's day, they did have a version of thrift shopping
Let's talk TRAIDS:
As I hinted above, I think we should make some trades.
Ike's time as a Mets is done. He is way too inconsistent and we can't take a chance on him for 3 million dollars. That 3 million could be put to much better use. The Rockies need a first baseman, so I suggest a swap of reclamation projects. The Rockies could take a flyer on Ike to rediscover his form in Denver and we could take on a lefty with some promise but major control issues. Hopefully after his time in Denver, Davis does not turn into this:
2. Lucas Duda and Jacob deGrom to the Tampa Bay Rays for Hak Ju Lee
The Rays need a first baseman because James Loney will probably depart through free agency. They also need bullpen help. Lucas Duda would be a type of player the Rays could take a shot at because for all of his flaws he did post a 120 wRC+ this year. He is also relatively cheap. Also deGrom is a guy who could slide into an MLB bullpen right away with his power sinker. Lee makes a ton of sense for the Mets because he is a shortstop who plays tremendous defense, can run, and gets on base. He would be an ideal fit in Citi Field to play short as well as be a top of the order hitter with his high OBP and speed. Yunel Escobar has team options the next two years for just 5 million dollars so Lee is blocked for a while because Escobar has averaged 3 WAR the last 3 years and would be a no brainer for 5 million. Furthermore the Rays will trade David Price and it quite possibly might be for a shortstop like Jurickon Profar.
Intra division prospect for prospect trades rarely happen but this makes a lot of sense for both sides. The Marlins infield has nothing but holes and Flores shores up one at third baseman quite nicely. Similarly Marisnick is in a Miami outfield logjam with Marcell Ozuna, Christian Yelich, and Giancarlo Stanton and he would also fill a Mets outfield spot quite nicely. Marisnick is a toolsy, young outfielder so he should be the type of player that the Mets should be targeting. Marisnick put up a 150 wRC+ in AA at age 22 and Flores put up a 136 in AA at age 20 along with a 129 wRC+ in AAA at 21. They are of similar value as hitters and they fill holes for both the Mets and Marlins so this trade makes sense. If it was absolutely necessary a minor prospect, such as Jayce Boyd, could be kicked in on the Mets side because Marisnick is regarded as a slightly higher ranked prospect. But that is where Sandy's black magic comes in. Between Cesar Puello and Marisnick I am hoping for at least one MLB-caliber right fielder. Due to Biogenesis, I am betting that Puello starts in AAA and Marisnick gets his shot with the big club on Opening Day.
Alternate Traid: Daniel Murphy and Rafael Montero to the Tigers for Nick Castellanos
This allows us to get an outfielder with impressive #rig in Castellanos as well as add some payroll flexibility. Wilmer Flores would then take over at second base. However, this would slightly compromise the defense as it would force Choo to play right and Castellanos to play left and both are below average defenders there. Plus I doubt the Tigers do this although it makes sense in terms of value. Castellanos is a guy who can be a better hitter than Murphy next year and Montero would have no place in the loaded Detroit rotation. I'll take my chances on the 5 tool talent Marisnick instead who we have a better chance at getting. This trade would also allow us to pay Choo the full money the first year so if the reader of this AAOP thinks I am flouting rules with Choo's salary then assume this is the move I make instead of Flores for Marisnick.
Sandy Alderson has a bit more than 20 dollars to sign people this offseason, but he will have to be smart in where he spends his money. Here is what I think should happen.
1. Sign Corey Hart to a 1 year deal for 5 million dollars along with 5 million in incentives incentives and a 10 million dollar team option for 2015.
Hart would come to the Mets to play first base on a one year value re-establishing deal. He was a horrendous defender in the outfielder and after knee surgery the outfield is probably no longer an option. His bat is what the Mets want at first base as Hart posted an average 130 wRC+ from 2010-2012. Teams will shy away due to his injury but this is a risk well worth taking for the Mets as Hart can potentially supply an impact bat for peanuts.
2. Sign Shin Soo Choo to a 6 year deal worth 102 million dollars.
Scott Boras will shoot for the moon with Choo considering the Hunter Pence deal, but as we saw with Michael Bourn, draft pick compensation can drive the price of a Free Agent down. Choo is not a perfect player, as he cannot hit lefties for any power and his defense is not great. Also he is coming off a career year in an awesome hitters' park. However, Choo still got on base at a .347 clip against lefties this past year and has a career 135 wRC+ so he would fit the "I gotta get some bats" theme. Choo would solve the top of the order woes for the Mets and he would only have to play left field with the Mets which would help his defensive value. Choo has some red flags, but short of Robinson Cano he is the best hitter available and the Mets need hitters. Furthermore, Choo might attract more Korean Americans to the ballpark which can only help! Choo for the most part makes sense and if he can be had at an affordable price such as the one listed above I would do it. I would make Choo's 2014 salary 12 million and the salary throughout the rest of his contract 18 million(which is what Pence is getting) to fit the 2014 payroll. This 6 million raise will be supported by the Bay and Santana moneys(8 million) finally coming off the books after next year as well as payroll increase...right Jeffie?
3. Sign Josh Johnson to a one year deal worth 6 million dollars with 4 million in incentives
Johnson and Corey Hart will both be looking for value re-establishing deals. In Johnson's case, he posted a horrendous 6.20 ERA in 2013. However, I think he is a prime candidate for a rebound. Johnson gave up a ton of homers in the AL East, something which should be remedied moving to the NL East. Furthermore, if Johnson wants to reesatblish his value, the NL East would be the perfect place to do it considering all the success Johnson has had in this division. Johnson posted an outstanding 9.18 K/9 as well as a manageable 3.32 BB/9. All of this led to a 3.58 xFIP and a prime candidate for a huge 2014 rebound. Johnson is the only free agent pitcher who has a prayer of "replacing" the great Matt Harvey unless Tim Lincecum finds his control and fastball velocity(unlikely). Johnson is a great risk to take in my opinion.
Dice-K and Pelfrey for rotation depth and because Mets games are too short(teehee). Gonzalez for middle infield depth, Madson for bullpen depth, and Franceour as insurance for Marisnick and Puello if he can regain even a bit of the play he showed two years ago.
5. Sign LaTroy Hawkins to a 1 year deal worth 2 million dollars.
Someone has to wear the granddad's clothes right? Especially since Atchison will be gone. Plus Hawkins would be a good mentor and clubhouse leader. Oh yeah and even in his wizened age LaTroy still throws it 96. In a world without thrift shops I would give this bullpen spot to Joe Smith on a 2 year deal in the range of 7 or 8 million but hey!
6. Just for shits and giggles offer Daniel Murphy for Matt Kemp and offer Robinson Cano a 6 year deal worth 36 million dollars as well as a lifetime supply of Cholula hot sauce along with lifetime protection from Matt Harvey 96 mph fastballs to the knee. Also move the right field fence in to a more manageable 314 feet when Mr. Cano bats. Ok thanks!
So now let's look at the team that all this swag shopping has assembled. This will be a team with 80 grade #want(Daniel Murphy, Justin Turner) as well 80 grade #rig with the likes of Latroy, Wright, Hart, and others. The rig might get to plus plus plus territory when #rig god Noah Syndergaard joins us. And listen up kids....this is the state that taking steroids will leave you in.
The Opening Day Lineup:
|1. Shin Soo Choo||LF||60||70||12|
|2. Hak Ju Lee||SS||50||70||.5|
|3. David Wright||3B||Graham's Number||Graham's Number||20|
|4. Corey Hart||1B||80||55||5|
|5. Travis d'Arnaud||C||70||75||.5|
|6. Daniel Murphy||2B||65||90||5.8|
|7. Jake Marisnick||RF||70||65||.5|
|8. Juan Lagares||CF||60||60||.5|
|9. Josh Satin||1B 2B 3B||.5|
|10. Eric Young Jr.||LF 2B||1.9|
|11. Ruben Tejada||SS 2B||1|
|12. Juan Centeno||C||.5|
|13. Justin Turner||3B SS 1B PIE||
|14. Jon Niese||65||60||5|
|15. Zack Wheeler||70||70||.5|
|16. Dillon Gee||60||60||3.4|
|17. Jenrry Mejia||70||65||.5|
|18. Josh Johnson||80||70||6|
|18A. Daisuke Matsuzaka||55||60||NA not on 25 man|
|18B. Mike Pelfrey||40||55||NA not on 25 man|
|18C. Rafael Montero||65||70||NA not on 25 man|
|18D. Noah Syndergaard||100||75||NA not on 25 man|
|19. Carlos Torres||middle reliever long man spot starter||50||60||.5|
|20. Gonzalez Germen||middle reliever this spot could go to La Familia||65||55||.5|
|21. Josh Edgin||lefty who can get righties out too||60||60||.5|
|22. Scott Rice||LOOGY also doubles as Terry's annual "OVERUSE" campaign poster boy||55||70||.5|
|23. LaTroy Hawkins||Grandpa 7th inning man||110||65||2|
|24. Vic Black||setup man baby closer||65||70||.5|
|25. Bobby Parnell||closer||70||70||3.2|
Total Payroll(Including Bay and Santana): 81.1 Million Dollars (Which is also equal to 20 dollars times 4000000 + how many supermodels Matt Harvey gets each night so yeah, we were thrift shopping)
So there you have it: the 2014 New York Mets. This is a good young team that can surprise some people next year as well as a team that is well set up for the next few years with a good strong core of young players. I think my plan centers us around pulling off two big trades which net us two cheap players at positions we need: Hak Ju Lee and Jake Marisnick. Then we take two risks in Corey Hart and Josh Johnson. Finally we make a big sign that may or may not be wise in Shin Soo Choo.
Thank you for reading, God Save the Harvey and the Dickey, and let's go METS! A few more memes to wrap it up.
This plan has to be right, right, Wright?
Life would be a lot better with these two guys messing up left and right:
Despite these stupid people owning our team, always remember: