Gonzalez is a three time All-Star and Gold Glove outfielder. After starting his career out in Oakland, he has made a name for himself as a member of the Colorado Rockies, who he has spent the past ten seasons with.
With a career batting average of .287 and OBP at .345, Gonzalez has the potential to improve what was a weak hitting team last year and add a veteran presence to what is a very young and inexperienced outfield.
Gonzalez is mainly limited to the corner outfield positions at this point in his career, which isn’t a huge problem since both Nimmo and Conforto are capable of shifting over to play center. One minor issue I have with Gonzalez is that he is a lefty, which the Mets currently have a surplus of in the lineup, which again, isn’t a huge issue either.
HOWEVER, my biggest concern is that he spent the past 10 years playing in Colorado, in what is considered to be the best hitter’s park in the MLB since the ball’s carry much better due to the thinner air. In 2018, Gonzalez hit .315 in home games and .241 in away games.
Many player’s stats are known to be “inflated” from hitting at Coor’s Field for all their home games, and often their production regresses when the leave to play elsewhere (see Troy Tulowitzki).
At 32 years old, he is no longer in the prime of his career, and his home run numbers and batting average have been down steadily over the past two years. If he can’t still perform at a high level in Colorado, the best hitters park in baseball, how will he fair in Queens?
1 year $5 million
Gonzalez’s best days are behind him, but he still could be a productive player for the Mets in a more limited role. The Mets have flexibility to move outfielders around, so his defensive limitations wouldn’t be a massive issue if the Mets were to sign him. Even though his numbers are down, and he’ll be leaving Colorado, he’s still a solid bat and would be a good fill in until Cespedes returns.
As for Gonzalez, over his 11-year career, he has only appeared in the post season three times and has never made it past the Divisional Round. Joining the newly revamped Mets would give him the chance to play on a legitimate contender and make a post season run. Despite it being a more limited role, many players at his stage of their career would welcome an opportunity like this.