This morning we got wind from Adam Rubin that the Mets were about to send down struggling center fielder Kirk Nieuwenhuis in exchange for the red hot Juan Lagares, who is hitting .346/.378/.551 in 78 at-bats at triple-A Las Vegas.
Now the news is official.
Roster move: Outfielder Juan Lagares, who was hitting .346, was recalled from Las Vegas (AAA). Kirk Nieuwenhuis was optioned to the 51s.— New York Mets (@Mets) April 23, 2013
With Lagares still developing as a player, it would make sense for him to take over the starting center field job for now. Nieuwenhuis, although he his a solid defensive player, is hitting just .125/.176/.188 in 16 at-bats this season. Collin Cowgill — who, like Lagares, hits right-handed — is hitting .200/.200/.375 in a slightly larger sample.
Earlier today, Rob Castellano penned a piece regarding what fans can expect from Lagares. In a nutshell, Lagares is a good contact guy who doesn't doesn't walk often and has doubles power. Hit that link for more on the 24-year-old outfield prospect.