Adding Curtis Granderson Should Only Be The Start, Not The Main Offseason Addition

Coming off the recent busy activity throughout Major League Baseball — which included an abundant number of trades and a number of major free-agent signings, such as Robinson Cano agreeing to terms with the Seattle Mariners on a ten-year, $240 million deal — the Mets have finally joined the headlines. According to multiple reports, the New York Mets have agreed to sign outfielder Curtis Granderson to a four-year, $60 million contract. Although it’s refreshing to hear the Mets acquire significant, well-establish talent, it should be noted that Granderson should not be the sole prized piece for the Mets organization this offseason, but rather the first of few building blocks to help construct a contending team.

Aug 26, 2013; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Yankees designated hitter Curtis Granderson (14) in the dugout prior to a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

It had been reported that Granderson was holding out in search of a guaranteed four-year deal. Well, the Mets showed a willingness to overspend and ink the talented outfielder to a multi-year deal. While Granderson is a welcome addition to the Mets organization and fan base, it’s no secret the Mets have multiple holes to fill. It’s not expected for the Mets to address every single need in one offseason, but more needs to be done to build a contender for the future. I am very much in favor of the Mets signing Granderson, as I think he fits the needs of the current team — speed, power, solid defense in the outfield and most importantly the ability to handle New York — but Granderson shouldn’t be the main protection in the starting lineup for David Wright manger Terry Collins eluded to earlier this offseason.

While signing a former All-Star like Granderson will send the fan base the much desired message of reinvesting to compile a competitive team for the near future, more assets need to be acquire to get this big market team back on track. As fans, we have suffered year after year seeing subpar talent added to this organization mainly because of budget constraints. Needless to say, the organization has seen a sizable portion (roughly $50 million) of team payroll — thanks to the contracts of Jason Bay, Johan Santana and  Frank Francisco — finally come off the books.

It has been reported that only $25-30 million will be in reinvested into the 2014 payroll. If this holds true, the Mets will not have much left over to fill the multiple positions needed to bolster this current anemic offense. Less than two weeks ago, the Mets also inked outfielder Chris Young to a one-year, $7.25 million dollar deal. Now that the Mets signed Granderson to a contract that includes an annual value of $15 million per season, Alderson may have at most approximately $8 million remaining to spend this offseason. Now factor in the arbitration-eligible players in line for a pay raise, that results in no wiggle room in terms of extra spending to build the 2014 Mets, at least in terms of payroll.

There are still ways to improve this franchise, and that’s by being creative and proactive on the trade market. Winter Meetings are only a few days away, and I expect Alderson to talk to any team regarding almost every prospect — except Noah Syndergaard —in an effort to expedite the process of making this Mets a contender in the National League East. In my opinion, Alderson should consider trading highly touted prospect Travis d’Arnaud in a package to bring in more impact players. Outside of Syndergaard,  Zack Wheeler and Wright — no one should be considered as an untouchable asset. I am confident a package of players that includes prospect Rafael Montero, d’Arnaud, Daniel Murphy, Ike Davis and Eric Young Jr., should bring back a respectable return of players that can make an impact right away. If Murphy is dealt this offseason, Young Jr. could potentially fill in at second base. Although a speedy outfielder, Young Jr. came up as a second baseman in the  Colorado Rockies farm system.

I am a fan of Granderson joining the Mets. As the deal shows us — the fan base —  the organization is serious about investing to build a competitive team. Furthermore, it sends signals around the league that ownership is serious about turning the franchise around. Adding Granderson is a nice fit for the Mets, but more pieces need to be added. Alderson still has his work cut out for him, but with the Winter Meetings around the corner, we can only hope Alderson is well aware that adding Granderson is only the beginning in making the Mets relevant again.

Topics: Curtis Granderson, Kevin Baez, New York Mets, Sandy Alderson

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  • Bill

    I am confused. How is a $60M outfielder that the Mets need badly not going to be the main addition of the year? Your group of players identified as trade bait to bring back ‘impact’ players right now . . who exactly are you thinking by being an ‘impact’ player? They are certainly not going to get a top shelf catcher – think Posey or Molina – can’t think of anyone else. The only other possible impact player I can think of at this point is Tulowitzski at shortstop, but that ain’t happening either – his contract is huge, and to get him, it would leave bigger holes than they have now, plus Colorado has said they aren’t dealing him. Trading Murphy would be crazy now – they no longer need any more power from that position and they couldn’t get anything any better for him anyway. And let’s make up our minds about how to improve the team – I believe a good combo of young players and good older acquisitions is sound strategy. One of those promising young players is Travis d’Arnaud. The Mets got him with a lot of hype – #2 prospect in the organization and now you want to give up on him already? Yea, he didn’t have a great start at the plate, but let’s give him a chance. There is nobody out there that is anywhere close to as good that is available. I agree a trade of one of the extra first basemen (preferably Duda) should be used to get a shortstop upgrade, but with the everyday outfield now, it doesn’t need to be a superstar shortstop – there are really none available. A moderate upgrade would be a Lowrie, Hardy, altho I like the idea of exploring the acquisition of one of the two young shortstops on Arizona. Reyes might be a dream, Asdrubal Cabrerra from Cleveland perhaps, but none of them should break up the core of this team. At this point, leave catcher, 2nd base, 3rd base and the outfield alone. I believe that one of the two 1st basemen will have a bounceback year, particularly now that they won’t be the only ones on the team to provide left handed power. What is left is not ‘the Main Addition’, but a bit of tweaking – a ‘rent-a-starter’ (Paul Maholm?? – only because he throws from the left). The price of starting pitching is a bit scary – a lot of three year deals being thrown around that I wasn’t expecting. Perhaps signing a reliever or two (Howelll??), a shortstop (see above, and they are in pretty good shape. One place I haven’t talked about is centerfield. I am a Lagares fan – great defense and an improving bat – he hit better as the year went on, except for a little dip towards the end, but with a terrible start, he actually put up a respectable season for an unknown. I believe with an everyday job from the start, he will hit .260 or so. He will probably never be a power hitter, but so what at this point. I’d like to see what he could do at the top of the lineup and use his speed on the bases a bit more. This looks like a pretty decent balanced line up at this point

    Lagares cf (R)

    Murphy 2b (L)
    Wright 3b (R)
    Granderson lf (L)
    Young rf (R)
    Davis/Duda 1b (L)
    d’Arnaud c (R)
    Shortstop (Cabrerra, Reyes, Lowrie are all switch hitters), Gregorius is (L)
    Pitcher

    • Robert_1970

      I agree on d’Arnaud. To me, he’s one of those young assets — the only young hitter we have that is an obvious asset! == and we should hold him. Catching is scarce, and a decent catcher with a good bat a premium. Don’t trade him!

  • Robert_1970

    Well said. I trust Alderson to not derail the course he has set & not succumb to Wilpon insecurities or even fan angst and do something rash. The move for Granderson is fine, I agree. Three years would have been ideal, but four should still yield plus production during the contract’s first two or three years. I like his defense on either corner too. With some luck from the injury gods, we’ll get that.

    Still, Granderson at this point is not a main cog — the type of guy who should be counted on to bat clean up and “protect” DW. I would love love love the deal if CG were being added as a supp piece (a 5th or 6th place batter) to a contending team.

    Sandy can make some more moves via trades. No doubt. Maybe something in the international market. But we should be careful to over valuate guys like Murphy. Murph could net a valuable return (what we get doesn’t have to be a power bat that everyone seems obsessed with) only if paired with attractive young pitching. If Thor & Wheels are untouchable, that leaves Montero as the only near MLB-ready starter to flip, reducing the chances of landing that big power threat.

    I would consider something like Murph & Montero for Nick Franklin, let’s say. Young guy, middle IF, with upside still to be tapped. Maybe more available now that Cano is in rainy Seattle. Franklin’s peak years coincide well with our projection to contend. Montero could come in handy for the Mariners because Walker may need a little more time in the minors. I am only guessing here …

    And then we should proceed carefully because we may need Montero’s 150 innings next summer. More importantly, his 170+ innings in 2015, which is likely the earliest we have some chance of contending should we catch a few breaks. if we are to contend sooner rather than later it will need to be on the back of a resurgent, cheap, deep crop of starting pitchers. In other words, I trust Sandy is focused on securing young, attractive assets on any major deal involving any of our young arms.

    • chums41

      ” I trust Alderson to not derail the course he has set & not succumb to Wilpon insecurities and do something rash” Are you freaking kidding me??? By signing Granderson on the cheap, instead of Choo, a player whose talents are much better suited for Citi Field, he has succeeded in replicating Minaya’s Bay over Holliday decision. Are we really better off with Chris Young and Granderson as opposed to Choo? Why do we continue to choose home run hitters over batting average doubles hitters when our home park is a Pitchers park? Finally, are we going to sign Arroyo, whose 200+ innings would anchor a young staff or should we continue along our current path of repeating the same mistakes over and over, by signing ome piece of garbage reclamation project and watch Wheeler, Gee and Montero go the way of Wilson, Pulsipher and Isringhausen?? Insanity has been described as pursuing the same course of action over and over again and expecting different results. Please provide me with some wisdom regarding our next moves.

    • chums41

      I’m sorry, I didn’t even make it to your idiotic trade ideas. You’re going to trade Murphy, a .290 hitter entering his prime along with Montero, a potential # 2 or 3 starting pitcher whose skill has been compared to Pedro Martiniez, for Franklin, a shortstop who hit .225 last year???

  • chums41

    If they were serious about investing in the team, they would have signed Choo. This is the kind of useless splash they used to pull under Minaya to get on the back page of the local papers. The joke is that the Cano and Beltarn signings have relegated them to the page of irrelevance, where they belong. It also sadly exposes Alderson as a fraud, just a puppet for the idiot Wilpons, whose decision to go on the cheap with Bay, instead of signing Holliday, was the beginning our our downfall into sub-mediocrity.

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