Now the Mets have zero natural center fielders on the roster. The New York Mets decided to outright Jason Pridie to Triple-A, and the assignment in pending per his approval. Yet after posting a .225/.304/.333 line with 1 homerun, 9 RBI, 17 runs, and 3 stolen bases in 136 plate appearances in 2011, it’s not all too surprising that the Mets took him off the roster.
Before the season, no one thought Pridie would ever see a single at-bat for the Mets at the Major League level. The 27 year-old career-Minor Leaguer spent most of 2010 with the Mets’ Triple-A team, owning a collective .286/.330/.384 line with 3 homeruns, 19 RBI, 20 runs, and 9 stolen bases. While the former Tampa Bay Rays and Minnesota Twins farmhand had once exhibited good speed (he stole 25-plus bases in 2003, 2007, 2008, and 2009), his mere 9 bags in 2010 with the Mets more or less sealed his fate as a journeyman.
But then Angel Pagan got injured in late-April, changing Pridie’s destiny. Pridie made his Mets Major League debut on April 22, and essentially became the starting center fielder through May. As a starter for the Mets, Pridie posted a .239/.316/.420 line with 3 homeruns, 11 RBI, 11 runs, and 4 stolen bases in 100 plate appearances. The outfielder also provided some decent defense in center, owning a -1.7 UZR/150 in 312.6 innings there, and a 5.5 UZR/150 in 84.6 innings in right field.
However, upon Pagan’s return in late-May, Pridie’s playing time disappeared–and so did the already minimal production he provided. From May 29 onward, Pridie owned a .225/.304/.333 line with 1 homerun, 9 RBI, 17 runs, and 3 stolen bases in 136 plate appearances.
On the whole, Jason Pridie provided a surprisingly solid temporary replacement in center field for the Mets, but he simply does not have a good enough glove to make-up for his horrendous bat and mediocre speed. And that’s even for a fourth or fifth outfielder. Looking forward to 2012, Pridie will likely accept the Triple-A assignment, and unless a barrage of injuries open the door yet again, he should remain there for the season.
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