Sunday, April 29, 2012
Making for a tough decision
For the immediate future (the return of Torres), Kirk can slide over to LF, since Bay will be out for a while longer. Should he play every day? Or should he split time with Hairston, since the Captain struggles against lefties? And if he does split time with Hairston, is this best for Nieuwenhuis's development? And then what does happen when Bay comes back? Do the Mets relegate Jason to the bench, and "begin the end"? Or, do they play Bay, send Kirk down to continue his development, and let the chips fall where they may in 2012? Interesting questions, aren't they? Metsblog discusses this point today.
My take- play Nieuwenhuis in LF against righties, starting Monday. I worry about his confidence if he continues to struggle against lefties. Then, when Bay comes back, send Nieuwenhuis back to Buffalo to hone his craft. I like the idea that once guys have had a taste, they have that much more incentive to work hard to come back. And realistically, you know Bay will not sit, nor be released. We all know why. Welcome to 2012. The Mets are in that transitional phase. They are not going with a full-on youth movement. Maybe they can't as they try to sell tickets (though some would say that may increase sales). The Mets are also not fully committed to contending this year, despite what they say. They are not going to add veterans this summer, even if they're in contention. They're in the middle. It has its exciting points (seeing some youth) and its frustrating points (being on the edge of contention, but then again, not really). The page will turn to more youth in 2013 (the pitchers may come up), and even more in 2014. Then, true contention will emerge. That's how I see it. They have to fully leave Purgatory.
Mike Pelfrey goes down, needing TJ. Much as we bash Big Pelf, it's kind of sad. He's thrown his last pitch as a Met. They won't give a contract to a "veteran" coming off TJ. They don't have to-the organizational strength is young pitching. I wish Pelf well.
I think Valdespin will go down tomorrow for Torres. I wish we could have seen more of him. This team desperately, desperately needs speed. But there's nowhere for Valdespin to play, and he needs to play every day. So, he'll go and Lutz will stay. Kind of funny that the lesser talent gets to stay, right? I wonder where Valdespin will land. LF, when Bay is done? Or is Valdespin the future 2B and leadoff hitter, and Murphy becomes trade bait to an AL club to bring back a piece? Interesting.....
These are the conversations of transition, folks.