Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New Year's Mets-olutions

As 2013 rolls through the Mets are looking towards a bright future.  That future may not come until 2014 so until then they have to stay on track.  As an organization they too can have New Year's resolutions, although these won't involve getting in shape or watching less television.

One thing the Mets have to do is stay on track with their farm system.  They already had Zack Wheeler, Jeurys Familia, Brandon Nimmo, and Kevin Plawecki in their system last season.  They acquired Travis d'Arnaud and Noah Syndergaard, two players that add to the minor league potential.  However, Wheeler and d'Arnaud are likely going to reach the Mets this year and lo and behold, they won't be prospects anymore.  Yes, it is part of the cycle of any organization.  Yes, it means the Mets will be getting their contributions in the Majors.  No, it doesn't mean they can neglect the farm system until it shrivels and goes to the place Omar Minaya and co. left it before.  Just because the future is bright now it doesn't mean it can't continue to shine even when the MLB club finds success.

A bit of a tougher resolution for the Mets is to get faster.  The ranked 27th in the Majors in stolen bases with only 79.  For some perspective on that number, they only had 30 more SB than Mike Trout, who led the MLB.  In 2007, Jose Reyes stole 78 bases on his own.  The Mets don't have a clear speedster on the team right now and they're not going to lead the league in SB.  They do have the potential to improve, though.  Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Ruben Tejada may never be huge base stealers but they can learn when to sneak one.  If only to move players into scoring position and create more RBI opportunities, this is an area that needs improvement.

The most obvious resolution for 2013 is to figure out the outfield.  It is the most glaring need for this team and they need to fill it just to start the season with a respectable roster.  From left to right their outfield today is Lucas Duda, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Mike Baxter.  Thank goodness the season didn't start today.  They need a righty-hitting outfielder, if not for this season, for the future.  Their closest outfield prospect is Matt den Dekker, a lefty.  Duda, Nieuwenhuis, and Baxter are also lefties.  Be it drafting a righty outfielder from college and hoping they can develop quickly, or actually signing a free agent, something has to be done.

1. Keep the farm strong
2. Get faster
3. Find an outfield

They have all year for these resolutions.  I hope some are achieved sooner rather than later though.

Let's Go Mets!

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