Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Return of Jason Bay is a Conundrum for Mets

I've been looking for an excuse to use conundrum in a title and now I've found it. Jason Bay is the ultimate conundrum. The highest paid everyday player who produces the least. What do you do with him? Throw the "right-handed bat" argument out the window because it's stupid. These are professionals and if you're paid enough you should be able to hit lefties and righties.

As Jason Bay returns to the Mets tonight it opens up a bit of a Pandora's box with regards to the Mets outfield situation. Big Bucks Bay is going to play. You don't sign him for that money to have him ride the bench. A platoon is possible but even that causes issues.

Right now Kirk is not the same player he was in April. He's got growing pains and we all should have expected it, but with the Mets current skid and a huge series against the division leaders you have to think Terry Collins wants to put his best players out there.

All of a sudden the Mets have a very crowded outfield. Besides Kirk and Bay, you have Torres, Hairston, Duda, and Valdespin. Valdespin shouldn't be in the bigs unless he's going to play regularly. Torres is your only stolen base option except for maybe the aforementioned Valdespin. Duda has been your everyday right fielder since opening day, but Scott Hairston is potentially the best right handed bat you have after Wright.

Against lefties do you have Torres, Hairston & Bay and then against righties you have Valdespin, Kirk and Duda? It's possible but swapping out your entire outfield every other day seems idiotic.

If Bay produces....sorry I had to stop laughing...ok IF he produces, he'll play everyday and I expect Kirk & Torres to platoon. If Bay doesn't produce (and by produce I mean bat above .250), then the questions will start flying and Terry Collins will have to spin a wheel to figure out who to play each day.

Too many options is normally a good problem, but not when most of them are mediocre. A rejuvenated Bay would be a huge lift for the Mets and even allow them to avoid any trade talks for another hitter.

But how likely is that to happen?

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