The latest New York Mets rumors tell us a little something about their plans for 2019. Veteran Jose Bautista could come back in a lesser role.
There may be a reason why the New York Mets didn’t trade Jose Bautista at this year’s trade deadline. According to the August edition of Mets rumors from Mike Puma of the NY Post, Joey Bats could return in 2019.
Puma says the Mets may intend to bring Bautista back in a lesser role. Though this doesn’t eliminate the possibility of an August trade, I have a tough time accepting this.
Bautista is a nice finishing piece on a good team. On a squad like the Mets, I’m not so sure he has a role. This team needs to get younger and fresher. Bautista’s nearing 40th birthday doesn’t fit this description.
The Mets could conceivably open 2019 with an outfield which includes Jay Bruce, Michael Conforto, Juan Lagares, and Brandon Nimmo. Yoenis Cespedes may return around midseason, further adding to the depth. Not to mention, Bruce could finally transition to first base nearly full-time or maybe Cespedes sees action there instead.
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As Puma notes, a plan to bring back Bautista is based on a lack of outfield depth within the organization. That’s a fair point except for the fact that there could come a point when they’re overloaded with MLB players who don’t have the flexibility to move to the infield.
We could see Bautista spend more time at first base or even make spot starts at the hot corner. The role they would have in mind for him is a limited one anyway.
I’m not so sure I like the idea of justifying the signing of an again player with this intention. The Mets brought back Jose Reyes for 2018 and he has been horrendous all year long. I can see the same result with Bautista in 2019. When will the Mets learn to quit while they’re ahead?
There are several other Mets on expiring contracts or recently departed ones I would prefer to see on the 2019 roster instead. Bautista’s limited power numbers this season have me wondering what he has left in the tank. Other than an ability to draw walks well, what skill does he add?
If the Mets truly intend to contend in 2019, they need better ideas than this. Bautista has not been great for them. He has limited the bleeding since joining the team. In that time, he has come up with a few big hits.
As far as Mets rumors go, this is one of the most disappointing to hear; and I’m a Bautista fan.
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In a lesser role on a team with more problems than we can count, I fear he’d become another wasted roster spot.