No, not related to Lenny “Nails” Dykstra. The New York Mets acquired first baseman Allan Dykstra from the San Diego Padres in exchange for ex-reliever prospect Eddie Kunz. Dykstra, who was once compared to Jim Thome, is a former first round pick, drafted 23rd overall by the San Diego Padres in 2008. While the lefty hitter had been blocked by Adrian Gonzalez, with Gonzo now in Boston, it’s a bit curious that the Padres decided to throw in the towel on their ’08 first rounder.
Dykstra’s .235/.388/.407 line with 28 HR, 140 RBI, and 130 R in 1,038 career minor league PA’s might reek of potential, but keep in mind that, at age 24, the former first rounder has yet to play in a game above Single-A. The Padres also have a logjam of talented minor league first baseman in Anthony Rizzo, Matt Clarks, and Kyle Blanks–so at this point, Dykstra might have become an afterthought.
On the flip side, Eddie Kunz ain’t no spring chicken either. The Mets selected the right-handed pitcher with the 42nd overall pick in the 2007 draft. After being tabbed as the “future closer,” Kunz has done everything except shut down hitters. In fact, his career 4.87 ERA, 1.51 WHIP, 1.17 K/BB ratio in the minors suggests he barely belongs there. While the soon-to-be 25 year-old reliever can boast to friends about his 2.6 IP in 2008 for the Mets, he better hope they don’t check the specifics (13.50 ERA, 2.25 WHIP, 1.0 K/BB ratio).
The Dykstra/Kunz trade could very well be a “former first round bust swap,” but in terms of acquiring quality depth, choosing between a patient hitter and a ineffective reliever is a simple decision.