A reunion between the New York Mets and Daniel Murphy won’t work in 2019.
Our good friend Daniel Murphy is a free agent this winter and a guy plenty of New York Mets fans wouldn’t mind seeing return to Flushing. It’s a romantic idea indeed. After three seasons away, the rockstar second baseman comes home and finishes off a swell career in New York.
Romance in baseball is for dreamers. I sleep deeply enough to avoid them.
I understand why people would love to see Murphy back in the orange and blue. Not only would it take away his ability to hurt the Mets on the field, it would also give them a nice offensive boost. Or would it?
Murphy is at that age where he’s going to decline more and more each year. He hasn’t hit the wall yet, but it feels imminent that he will.
Factoring in all of the disadvantages that come with a Murphy reunion, I’ve narrowed down three reasons why the Mets should not bring him back.
He’s getting older, thus more prone to injury
Murphy missed a huge chunk of 2018 due to surgery in the offseason. If he were a younger man, I wouldn’t think twice about it. As a guy nearing his mid-30s (both he and I) I understand how the body breaks down and recovers a whole lot slower.
Although Murphy has hit well this year and has stayed relatively, another year on this earth surely comes with a risk. Every year my body hurts more. I can only imagine the aches and pains a professional athlete like his goes through.
They don’t need another left-handed bat
One element I don’t want to see the Mets add this offseason is yet another left-handed bat. They’re flush with lefty swingers. There was a time this season when the outfield included Jay Bruce, Michael Conforto, and Brandon Nimmo. All of them bat left-handed.
In addition to them, the Mets can get a left-handed stick from Jeff McNeil and even Dominic Smith if he ever decides to start hitting like a major leaguer. Simply put, Murphy could create a logjam of lefties on a team more desperate for some right-handed pop.
What does he add that they don’t have already?
Most important of all, Murphy doesn’t bring much to the Mets. Other than the hope that he can challenge for a batting title or hit .300 in their uniform, there’s no skill in his arsenal that this team is missing.
Murphy is slow and a poor defender. The Mets need to avoid adding players like this to their roster. They have plenty of guys who can fill in at first base and would benefit more from getting a guy with nice wheels to share the second base duties with McNeil.
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I view Murphy as a better American League option. He’s purely a hitter at this stage, best suited with many opportunities to DH.