Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Matthews on the Block: Something To Do With Chris Carter? Beltran?

Joel Sherman in his blog for the New York Post mentions, among other things, the possibility of the Mets dealing Gary Matthews Jr.  In his post he specifically points out the Reds as a potential landing spot.  Sherman says, "Two major league officials told me the Mets are shopping Gary Matthews Jr., and the Reds could be a possibility."  Sherman cites Matthews redundancy once Beltran returns as the reasoning the Mets would be willing to deal him.  Sherman also speculates that the Mets could have good news on Beltran's rehab window, which is why they would be more inclined to ship Matthews out of town.

If this is true, it shouldn't be too hard for the Mets to move Matthews considering the starting outfield in Cincinnati (Drew Stubbs, Jay Bruce and Chris Dickerson) and the fact that the Mets are only on the hook for $1 million on Matthews.  With the salary not being a hindrance, and depth in the outfield being an area of need for the Reds, a potential match here seems pretty reasonable.  The question just becomes what the Mets would want back for him.  I wouldn't expect more than a marginal prospect.

The more important aspect to me, of this story is why the Mets would be willing to move Matthews now.  Maybe it is, like Sherman speculates, good news on the Beltran front.  Or maybe the team has finally come to it's senses and decided to try to make room on the roster for a hot hitting Chris Carter.  Although Carter probably isn't a realistic option in centerfield, he does provide outfield depth, and has been scorching the ball this spring.  Moreover, with Pagan seemingly entrenched as the Mets opening day center fielder, the team can afford to go without a back-up center fielder, knowing that if something should happen to Pagan, all they would have to do is call up F-Mart or Jesus Feliciano in a pinch.  I don't know that this is what the Mets are thinking, but I do know that dealing Matthews would open up another spot on the opening day roster, and would drastically increase the likelihood the Mets would take Chris Carter to New York for opening day...

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