A little while ago, Sandy Alderson spoke with reporters from the General Managers Meetings in Orlando, Florida.
Here are the highlights of what Alderson had to say, with thoughts after each quote…
- Alderson “wasn’t surprised” at the deal Marlon Byrd got, and noted that the Mets had brief discussions with him:
Given what we’ve seen so far, I wasn’t surprised. Had you asked me the question three or four months ago, I might have been surprised. But not in light of what’s happened since the end of the season. There haven’t been that many signings, but this one is consistent with the others…we didn’t have extensive discussions with Marlon [Byrd] It wasn’t a place where we were prepared to be aggressive. And if it turned out that the market was as it turned out to be, then I’m happy for him.
…Alderson has an inkling of what the market will be, and the Byrd deal really isn’t outlandish considering what others are asking for. At the same time, I’m glad the Mets passed. Byrd had a career year last year at age 36, and the odds of him replicating that are extremely slim.
- Alderson noted that the club is looking for power hitting outfielders, and disagreed with the notion that Citi Field saps power dramatically:
Our ballpark is not sufficiently unique that the composition of our team should be radically different than it is for most clubs.
…in his remarks, Alderson noted that lots of other teams are looking for power hitting corner outfielders, meaning it won’t be easy for the Mets to obtain them.
I’m glad he isn’t one of the people who feels the Mets shouldn’t go after power hitters because of Citi Field. For one, the fences were brought in a few years ago and the park has been pretty neutral ever since. Secondly, the team still has to play 81 road games. Ignoring the need for power would be incredibly foolish.
- On Eric Young, Jr’s role for 2014:
I think Eric is going to be a part of our team. And what his exact role might be, I think, will depend on our final roster. There’s no question about that. It also might depend on how things go in spring training. But I expect he’ll be a valuable part of the team.
…Eric Young, Jr. simply shouldn’t be a starting outfielder on a contending team – unless that team is stacked elsewhere offensively. And I’m sure Alderson knows that. In the event the club deals Daniel Murphy to fill another hole, Young would likely move to second base. Still, he’s had very minimal exposure there, so that’s not ideal.
- Alderson noted that bringing in a veteran catcher to complement Travis d’Arnaud isn’t high on his list:
First of all, we like Anthony Recker as a backup. So if we were to get a more veteran guy, it would be in part out of concern that somebody is going to have to play every day if d’Arnaud gets hurt. Part of it might be a desire to have a little bit of mentorship for both d’Arnaud and Recker. The nice thing is we have a guy like [coach] Bob Geren on our staff, who had been very good at that himself. So the veteran backup catcher is not really a high priority for us. I mean, it’s nice to have. We’ve got some other need-to-have holes to fill.
…Travis d’Arnaud should be playing the majority of the time. He’s the best catching prospect in the game, and his injuries in both 2012 and 2013 were both fluky. I agree with Alderson here – there’s no reason to bring in an external catcher to pair with d’Arnaud. It’s not like that catcher would be a high impact guy anyway in the event d’Arnaud went down.