We asked New York Mets fans what the team should do with Pete Alonso and Dominic Smith when the season begins. Should they carry one of the first basemen or both?
One of the best battles for New York Mets fans to watch this spring was the one for the starting first base gig. As soon as it became clear that Todd Frazier would not be ready for Opening Day, it became a two-horse race between youngsters Pete Alonso and Dominic Smith. Alonso is viewed as a potential home run champion in the future while Smith has plenty to overcome to scrub away the bad taste he has left in our mouths from a poor big-league performance.
In our latest edition of Mets Fans Know Best, we asked on Twitter what Rising Apple’s readers thought about this two-man battle. Which of these two should the Mets carry?
We offered three options: only Alonso, only Smith, or both.
The results said that 22% of Mets fans want only Alonso, 23% want only Smith, and 55% want to keep both on the Opening Day roster.
There’s always a margin of error because of troll votes, misinformed votes, and the occasional hanging chad. I’m not sure everyone who voted understood all of the factors going into this decision such as Alonso’s extra year of control he gets by starting the season in the minor leagues.
Whichever way you voted, it’s a tough call. Both players deserve an Opening Day roster spot. But should the Mets really carry two first basemen?
With Frazier and Jed Lowrie likely to begin the year on the IL, the Mets will need to ensure they have enough bodies to man third base. Thankfully, there’s Jeff McNeil and Adeiny Hechavarria to cover the hot corner and other spots on the infield. J.D. Davis is also an option at the corner infield spots and the outfield as well.
Let’s say the Mets do carry Alonso and Smith on the Opening Day roster. One is on the bench which leaves room for the backup catcher and three more position players. If McNeil is the third baseman, Juan Lagares or Keon Broxton would start in center field with the other on the bench for the third spot. The Mets would probably carry either Davis and/or Hechavarria, too. Given this, it’s possible both do head north with the Mets.
Things get messy when Frazier and Lowrie return and someone needs to get optioned to the minor leagues. At that point, the Mets would need to make a tough decision on Alonso and Smith. Both have options. Lugging both around this season won’t work unless they trade or release someone else.
Based on the poll results, fans really just want the best offense possible. They want options. Can we blame them? The anemic bats from 2018 made everyone willing to do whatever is needed to find a way to score runs; even if it means employing a roster with some obvious holes.
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Mets fans know best. At least for the start of the year, a duo of first basemen is what they want to see most.