Signing Asdrubal Cabrera instead of Jed Lowrie
While I included Jed Lowrie on my list of key acquisitions made this offseason by the Mets, this is a signing I would have preferred them not to have made.
Lowrie arguably had the best season of his career in 2018, appearing in a career-high 157 games with the Athletics, over the course of which, he hit another career-high with 23 home runs and 99 RBI, while batting .267 with a .353 OBP, earning his first All-Star game selection and helping to lead Oakland to the playoffs.
Coming off such a great season, as well as being a switch hitter and capable of manning several positions around the infield, you may be wondering why I am critical of the Mets signing him.
Firstly, prior to the signing, I was under the impression that Jeff McNeil, who had a stellar rookie season with the Mets the year prior, would begin the season as starting third baseman, so I didn’t see much need to sign Lowrie in the first place.
Beyond that, Lowrie is an older player, as he will be 35 years old this April, and also has a history of injuries, as he has only appeared in over 100 games in a year only 4 times over his 11-year career. While injuries cannot be predicted when a player first signs, Lowrie has missed all of Spring Training and will be out to begin the season, which has not helped his case.
His contract, however, is the worst part of the deal. While Lowrie is a welcome addition to the team, the Mets vastly overpaid for him.
Lowrie joined the Mets on a 2 year, $20 million contract, which is far greater when compared to that of former Met Asdrubal Cabrera, who signed a 1 year, $3.5 million deal with the Texas Rangers.
Cabrera, who began last season with the Mets before being traded to the Philadelphia Phillies, is a comparable player to Lowrie, as both of them are switch-hitting infielders who posted similar numbers in 2018.
However, of the two, Caberea is the younger player, at only 32 years old, and has a much better track record with injuries, as he has rarely missed time on the disabled list throughout his career, and also was a fan favorite among Mets fans.
While Lowrie did post slightly better numbers in 2018, I prefer Cabrera as a player because of his track record and durability throughout his career, and after seeing the disparity between the two contracts they each signed, I would have preferred the Mets being back Cabrera instead.