New York Mets News

How will the Mets use first baseman Adrian Gonzalez?

By Richard Heaton

In a move that mirrors Jose Reyes’  return, the New York Mets will need to see how Adrian Gonzalez fits into their 2018

Obviously, Gonzalez is an extremely cheap option as the Mets are expected to pay league minimum. However, where will they place him?

Throughout the off-season, there was speculation that the Mets would sign another player to man the position. This was to allow Dominic Smith more time to grow and to earn the job.

Instead of signing a pure first baseman, the Mets first brought back Jay Bruce. In 2017, Bruce played 11 games as the first baseman.

Now the Mets have three players with the potential to actively get starts, with Smith, Bruce, and Gonzalez.

This is mostly where the price plays a huge role. This is because Gonzalez might not get anywhere near as many at-bats as some people think he will.

With both Smith and Bruce getting starts at first, it’s very possible that Gonzalez might get anywhere from 50 to 100 at-bats if the Mets keep him the entire season. Maybe even fewer.

Gonzalez struggled but should be able to drive in anywhere from 10 to 15 runs and as many as 20 extra-base hits.

If the Mets pay him league minimum, nothing but good can happen. If he can stay healthy and post just slightly better numbers than last season, it would be a success. On the other hand, if he hits less than .100 after a month, the Mets can release him and it would be as if they never signed him.

Next: What will be Jose Reyes’ role in 2018?

If the Mets were to sign Gonzalez two weeks ago, it would have been a good time to panic. They would have been entering the season with just himself and Smith. But having both Gonzalez and Bruce allows them to be as creative as they can be with how few or how many at-bats Gonzalez can have.