New York Mets News

Mets search for outfield bat


The Mets still have some work to do this offseason

As the reporting date for pitchers and catchers rapidly approaches, the New York Mets are still in search of a bullpen arm and a right-handed bat in the outfield. The players linked to the Mets have been Steven Pearce and Ryan Raburn.

In December the Mets signed outfielder Alejandro De Aza, who appears to be the platoon option in center field with Juan Lagares. De Aza not only provides a platoon with Lagares, but more importantly a security blanket. If Lagares continues to struggle at the plate, the Mets will be sure to give De Aza more playing time. Last season, Lagares surprisingly took a step back defensively while playing with an injured right elbow that impacted his positioning and led him to baby his arm.

Earlier in the offseason, the Mets made Ben Zobrist their top target. Zobrist would have provided stability at second base, while Daniel Murphy appeared to be on the way out. The more valuable aspect to the potential Zobrist acquisition would’ve been the versatility to play several positions at a high level. Zobrist eventually signed with the Chicago Cubs for four years, $56 million.

One player the Mets were connected to in rumors last year was Ian Desmonda free agent who has played with the Washington Nationals for the last seven seasons. Desmond has the ability to hit 20-25 HRs a season with 20 stolen bases. At the age of 30, Desmond is capable of playing an average shortstop.

With the market on Desmond being quiet, his representatives have expressed the willingness for him to sign as a super utility player. Not only would Desmond potentially be a better shortstop than Asdrubal Cabrera, he could start in left field or third base when David Wright is in need of rest. This was the potential plan for Zobrist, and Desmond is four years younger. It would benefit Desmond to stay in the division that he has played in his whole career.

Desmond would also bring a strong presence in the clubhouse. The veteran talent would be a welcome addition after losing veterans Kelly Johnson, Juan Uribe, Daniel Murphy and Michael Cuddyer. The signing would fill two needs identified at the start the offseason, which was a right-handed outfield bat, and a super utility veteran.

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The Mets have not broken the bank this offseason with the additions of Neil Walker, Asdrubal Cabrera and Alejandro De Aza. As the calendar moves closer to February, Desmond will be looking to lock up a deal as soon as possible. Other than the San Diego Padres, Desmond has not had much interest. This could be a chance to salvage the winter for the Mets offense.