Presuming the Mets reporters are correct and the Mets are 99.9% sure of Marlon Byrd in RF, and leaning towards using the veteran relievers in camp (Atchison, Hawkins) to fill out their bullpen, it seems the Mets will have to cut at least 3 players from the 40 man roster. If Quintanilla continues to outperform Hicks for the backup infielder spot that will require an additional cut, as will the inclusion of any lefthander still in camp (except Carson) vying for the second lefty position (Feliciano, Rice, etc). So with that in mind who do you cut?
Full Roster here: http://newyork.mets.mlb.com/team/roster_40man.jsp?c_id=nym
Some of the more likelier names below:
If you do take 5 spots (Q, Hawkins, Atchison, Byrd, Feliciano) you see that you quickly get into making some tough decisions. Would you trade Byrd for Lutz for instance? Also when making these decisions you have to factor who might pass through unclaimed. For instance, while Puello might still have a higher upside than most of these players he is not likely to be able to help a Major League team this year or next and with every other team in a similar roster crunch maybe no team burns a 40 man roster spot on him? On the other hand there are a few teams (the Braves among them, I think) that have 3 to 4 spots and might be able to use one on a wait and see type player.
Another thing to consider is that if Francisco and Santana each get healthy two pitchers will have to be sent down early in the season. So if you were to have cut to Elvin Ramirez for Pedro Feliciano and then Frank Francisco comes back mid April and you send down Feliciano, two weeks of Pedro would have potentially cost you a cost controlled pitcher.
You can solve this by trying to trade away a player like Justin Turner but if you do so you will still be in the same predicament if the return is a major leaguer. Turner for Eric Young Jr. likely makes us better but does nothing to alleviate the crunch. 2 for 1 deals like Turner and Lagares for Eric Young Jr. work or Major leaguers for non rostered players deals like Turner for Alfredo Amezaga also work.
I was wondering what everyone thought about the Roster crunch...specifically how many minor league free agents would you take north, which, and who would you cut to take them? or any other creative solutions