Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Sherman says Omar Can Salvage Offseason

In an article for the New York Post, Joel Sherman explains how in a few simple moves Omar can salvage the offseason. Sherman points to Rod Barajas, Felipe Lopez, Russell Branyan, Kiko Calero and Jarrod Washburn as cheap additions the Mets can make, especially considering the unspent money they had reserved for Bengie Molina.

I completely agree, AT THIS POINT IN THE OFFSEASON, with Sherman thinking the Mets should still add Lopez, Washburn and Barajas.  I am really not comfortable with the idea of Santos behind the plate for the team, and think although Barajas would NOT be a huge upgrade over Santos, he would still be an upgrade.  And it seems to be conventional wisdom that the guy can be had on a pretty cheap one year contract.

Washburn I believe would definitely be a better option than starting the season with Nieve as the fifth starter, but doesn't he want to be in Seattle or Minnesota.  From what it sounds like Washburn is considering retiring, which to me means he's not getting a deal even close to what he wants.  Another guy, I feel, the Mets can swoop in and grab at a decent price, as long as he's willing to let go of his geographic request.

Felipe Lopez, while I believe would be a substantial upgrade at 2B offensively and a decent upgrade defensively, would truly tick me off if the Mets added him.  Why?  Because Orlando Hudson is an all-around better player than Lopez, so if the Mets were willing all along to spend to bring in another 2B, why wouldn't they just make it Hudson.  It's not like Lopez is a viable back-up shortstop option, because of the ridiculous number of errors he's made there (20 in 2008, 28 in 2007 and hasn't been back).  And not that errors mean everything because I know Lopez has better range than Castillo, BUT he did make 6 more errors than Castillo did last season in 7 more games. Also, there are the small problems of Alex Cora, and Luis Castillo's contract, which still need to be an option right?

Calero and Branyan I feel are useless adds.  With the signing of Fernando Tatis and Murphy on the roster, the Mets should no longer be in the market for a player who can ONLY play first base.  I get that he has power, and is a lefty, but he also had a terrible second-half last season and doesn't add the right kind of depth to that team.   As for Calero, while I like the guy, Sherman himself gives other options which may come cheaper (minor leage deals) and seem like better fits for the Mets, specifically Mike MacDougal.  Also, Sherman seems to ignore a bigger bullpen need for the Mets, a lefty to take some of the load off of Feliciano.  I'd like to see bullpen depth added there, instead of adding another righty.

So while I think Sherman has some good ideas, these are the same issues we've been looking at all offseason which makes me wonder that if the team is going to take "cheap options" wouldn't they just have made the better "baseball moves" and gotten the better players from the outset.  If this is what they "need" to do to improve the team, I say go for it.  But at this point in the offseason I think it's fair to assume this team is in more financial trouble than they are leading on, or else they might have landed the better players earlier in the offseason...

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