By Leslie Monteiro
He hoped the team would start off well in April. Instead, they are 4-6 heading to tonight’s game against the Rockies. They are starting to fall apart in this young season.
Yes, it’s only the middle of April, but the Mets’ deficiencies are already being exposed in this homestand, and it won’t get better. They can’t hit, pitch or field. It’s no wonder why they are going to lose 92 games.
Alderson talked about winning with the current players when he took the job. He talked about trying to retool and win at the same time. He hoped a new manager could make the difference.
After watching the Mets for 10 games, he has to know this is a lost cause. He won’t admit it publicly, of course, but he doesn’t have to. He’d be saying what fans already know.
Bud Selig told Mets owner Fred Wilpon to hire Alderson specifically to turn this franchise around. For that to happen, he has to throw a fire sale. Those guys had enough time to prove their worth, and they have been the constant when it comes to the team losing games
In his column for Sports Illustrated yesterday, Jon Heyman had this to say:
“There is a growing suspicion around the game that if the Mets are out of it at mid-year, they will look to trade several veterans, possibly including Carlos Beltran, Jose Reyes and Francisco Rodriguez. But there is a belief now that Mike Pelfrey, a much younger veteran, might also make it to the trade block, a possibility that was first speculated by John Harper in the New York Daily News.”
Most Mets fans expected this year to be a transitional year. They saw the same team for the last two years, so they are realistic to know it’s not going to happen this year.
So why wait?
Alderson cannot worry about the repercussions with the fans if he trades Jose Reyes and David Wright. His job is to build a winner.
Reyes and Wright failed to take the team to the next level. Both of them oversaw the team’s collapse in 2008 and 2009, and they haven’t led the team to the playoffs since. By no means should either one be considered untouchable.
The Mets shortstop is a free agent after this season. He is going to want what Carl Crawford received from the Red Sox, who signed him to a seven year, $142 million deal. He is playing for his contract this year by hitting triples and getting on base often.
Still, it’s hard to believe Alderson is going to overpay for Reyes. For starters, the Mets don’t have the money to pay what he wants after the Madoff scandal, and the new general manager does not think he earned that money.
Reyes hasn’t been the dynamic player he was in 2006. He does not get on bases enough, and he does not steal bases anymore. He is always a sure thing to go to the injured list. That does not make his case to get what he wants in the open market.
Alderson is happy the Mets star is playing well. That way he can sell his asset to other teams that may need a player like him over the summer.
Wright is another guy the Mets have to trade. If the Mets can get a lot for him, Alderson would be a fool not to do it.
The franchise “star” hasn’t done anything to earn his untouchable status in recent years. He strikes out often, and he gets his home runs when it’s meaningless. In pressure situations, he grounds out or strikes out.
His struggles at Citi Field continue to be an issue, and if he can’t play at that park, his value is meaningless to the team.
Maybe they can package Wright and Reyes to the Angels for Mike Trout, Jean Segura, Kaleb Cowart and Peter Bourjos. That would be an ideal trade for the Mets. That’s the type of trade that can accelerate the team’s rebuilding process.
Alderson hopes Carlos Beltran, Francisco Rodriguez and Mike Pelfrey can do well enough to get other teams interested. That’s another way to build a team quickly by getting some good young players for those three.
Beltran and Rodriguez have no future with this team, and as I’ve stated previously, Pelfrey is clearly not the solution.
It’s easy to simply say trade these guys. The hard part comes from getting anything in return. Even if the experts think Alderson did well in trades, there’s no guarantee those guys will flourish.
Still, Alderson cannot be thinking that way. He was hired for being proactive in changing this team around. That’s why his best move was hiring J.P. Ricciardi and Paul DePodesta as his lieutenants in the front office. Those two scout well, and they know how to draft. That will come in handy come August when it’s time to make trades.
From now until the trade deadline, Alderson, Ricciardi and DePodesta must scout other team’s young players. They should be brainstorming what guys are out there for the team to acquire.
There’s no need to wait anymore. The sooner they do their homework, the better off they will be in making trades.
Expect this team to get busy in building this team for the next few months.
If the Mets stand pat after the trade deadline, then this new administration is not off to a good start.
Also, be sure to check out this great read of the Rise and Fall of the Wright-Reyes Era.
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