New York Mets look good, but have a glaring defensive weakness
In the outfield, now that Juan Lagares is gone, Brandon Nimmo will likely take over in center. Nimmo, in general, isn’t a good defensive player but, unfortunately, he’s worst in center field. He has a bad career DRS of -7 and UZR of -5.5 at that position, but he probably was able to work on his defense there during the offseason. At least fans will hope that was the case.
Jake Marisnick was a huge acquisition in that regard because he’s a fantastic defensive center fielder, but he will most likely mainly be used as a defensive replacement in later innings since he can’t hit. For that reason, Nimmo’s defense must at least be decent.
Michael Conforto is one of the Mets’ very best defensive players, and his glove is going to be valuable in 2020. He will most probably play in right field most of the time, where his defensive numbers are solid. His DRS and UZR in right are both above average at four and 2.4, respectively.
It’s great that the Mets are likely getting their superstar left fielder Yoenis Cespedes back, they need him. Cespedes hasn’t played since 2018 and his most recent defensive numbers haven’t been what we’re used to seeing, but his glove is still extremely valuable. In 4858 innings spent in left, Cespedes has a DRS of 36 and UZR of 24.8.
The Mets clearly need some work and are going to rely on many of their players having improved defensively or, for their players who used to be good but fell off, reverted back to their good old ways. The Mets had the worst defensive infield in baseball last year, mostly thanks to Rosario, so it will be interesting to see if they have improved in that regard.
Ramos is also key to the team’s success so that every pitcher feels comfortable with him behind the plate and so that they stop giving up so many stolen bases. For the outfield, even though Nimmo isn’t great in center, the Mets will at least be in good shape in the corners.
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There is a lot to hope for and potential improvements may be in the works, but the Mets’ poor defense could end up being quite detrimental to the team’s success in 2020.