4) Michael Cuddyer
The Mets should actually consider themselves lucky with this free agent bust. Michael Cuddyer signed a 2-year, $21 million contract with them prior to the 2015 season. He had won a batting title in 2013 and hit .331 over his last two seasons with the Rockies.
Cuddyer was friends with David Wright and relished the opportunity to play alongside him. It seemed very possible they signed a batting champion for cheap solely because his buddy happened to be their third baseman.
Well, Wright only played 38 games in 2015. This must have thrown off Cuddyer because he too spent a good portion of the season injured, playing in just 117 games. Even when he was on the field, Cuddyer slashed a poor .259/.309/.391 during the regular season. He hit just 10 home runs and appeared to strike out every time the situation called for a sac fly or ground ball.
Granted, the Mets made it to the World Series that year. But, that came largely on the shoulders of our next free agent bust.
Cuddyer recorded one single and a walk during the entire 2015 playoffs. The reason the Mets are lucky is because Cuddyer respectfully retired after the 2015 season, forfeiting most of the $12.5 million he was owed in 2016 back to the Mets organization.
Cuddyer said, “I just knew I wasn’t going to be able to give what I expect myself to give out on the field” to Anthony DiComo following his retirement. I suppose Cuddyer’s retirement spared the Mets some money initially and we should be thankful for his sacrifice. But, to be fair, it also opened the door for the Mets to sign another left fielder who wasn’t worth the cash.