Mets should promote Ruben Tejada for added infield depth
By Staff Writer
Former New York Mets infielder Ruben Tejada is down in Triple-A having a terrific season. The big league Mets could use him on the 25-man roster right now.
As New York Mets fans, I am still not sure if it’s worth crying or laughing really hard at the irony in Robinson Cano actually tearing his hamstring doing the one thing we thought we’d never see him do in a Mets uniform, hustle.
But alas, that is what seems to be the case as Cano went down with a hamstring tear while trying to hustle to second base on a double that will most likely end his inaugural season with the Mets.
Despite this setback, we know that there are many options both in-house and via the free agent market that the Mets can explore to find a suitable replacement in his absence. I am here to make a case for a former “blast from the past” player currently performing well for the Mets in their Triple-A farm system named Ruben Tejada.
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Tejada was first brought up in 2011 and showed some decent versatility playing SS, 2B or 3B in a bench role for the Amazins. In that, his first full year as a Met, he hit .284 with 15 doubles nearly 40 RBI and a respectable .360 OBP. All this was accomplished in roughly 330 at-bats.
Even though his Major League his career was nothing to write home about, Tejada did have his moments both in the field and at the plate where he provided some meaningful plays to help the Mets win some important regular season baseball games during his 5-year tenure.
Currently, Tejada is hitting nearly .340 with 35 RBI and 15 doubles to go along with an OBP over .415 in almost 250 at-bats for the Syracuse Mets. With the lack of offense being shown at the bottom of our line up from the likes of Luis Guillorme, Adeiny Hechavarria, and Juan Lagares, bringing up a solid contact bat that can play multiple infield positions wouldn’t be such a bad idea.
It also doesn’t hurt that Tejada is still in his 20’s and may have enough wisdom and professional baseball experience to now elevate his game to the next level. Tejada also provides versatility in that can play multiple infield positions.
Watching Ruben in his years past with the Mets, he is known as a solid line drive contact hitter that can both pull the ball or go the other way with a pitch. He loves the ball thrown to him both down and inside.
Ideally, in this Mets lineup, Tejada could bat either second or down in the order in the seven-hole. His ability to make contact and draw walks consistently would be a nice change of pace from the 1 for 21 Adeiny Hechavarria is currently in. Guillorme is also batting an underwhelming .188 with nine strikeouts in his limited plate appearances this season.
Even though we never got to see what Tejada could truly turn into after his tragic spike incident with then Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley during the 2015 postseason, now might be the opportunity for him to flourish given a second chance to play with the Amazins. This is because Ruben is a gamer who always brings a professional work ethic and a determined demeanor whenever he suits up in a Mets uniform.
If that same desire he had in the past is still there, there is a really good chance that Tejada could be that spark plug the Mets need at the bottom of their batting order.
Also, consider there is not really much for Brodie Van Wagenen and the rest of management to lose should Tejada not live up to his potential. Free agents such as Joe Panik or other infielders such as Dilson Herrera can always be called up to replace him if he struggles.
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And with roster sizes set to expand during September call ups, taking a chance by calling up a scrappy Met with decent upside potential might just be what this team needs to clinch that coveted wild card playoff spot they are chasing.