As the offseason endures, the New York Mets remain quiet. Again, there is only so much that can be done a limited budget, and the longer a player remains available, the cheaper they may become. However, New York still has areas that need improvement, including adding depth at first base.
The Mets gave Dominic Smith a chance at first base last season. Although he’s been a productive player in the minors, Smith struggled to find his way in the majors. He ended last season hitting .198 with a .262 OBP in his first stint in the big leagues. Smith’s play did not impress general manager Sandy Alderson, who told reporters that he had yet to win the full-time job.
Still, the Mets have not given up on Smith. If all goes well in the upcoming season, he will likely be the future at first base for the Mets. Nevertheless, it might be wise to sign a veteran to split time with him in the short term.
As the Daily News wrote in late November, the Mets have looked into the possibility of adding Adam Lind to play alongside Smith. And Lind can also play in the outfield, something the Mets seem to like. At age 34, he could be a valuable asset for the Mets. Just last season he greatly assisted the Washington Nationals off the bench.
Despite the Nationals declined Lind’s $5 million mutual option and opted to pay him $500,000 in a buyout. Washington wasted little time filling his role, signing Matt Adams to a one-year deal worth at least $4 million.
Regardless of that decision, Lind is a powerful hitter who fares well against right-handed pitchers. Last season he hit .303 along with 14 home runs and 59 RBIs. Additionally, he held a .362 OBP and a .513 slugging percentage in 267 at-bats. As a pinch hitter, he hit .356/.396/.644 with four home runs.
For his career, Lind is hitting .288 with a .348 OBP against right-handed pitching. Against lefties, he is only hitting .217 with an .263 OBP. What this would mean is that Lind would likely sit against a left-handed starter. In that case, Wilmer Flores seems like an option at first, if it wouldn’t be Smith getting those starts.
Although the Mets have more glaring areas of concern heading into the new year, adding another piece at first would not hurt. Based on his productive bat, Lind may not be a terrible choice.