New York Mets right fielder Michael Conforto is set to hit the open market this offseason for the first time in his career, and coming into this season you had to imagine that both Conforto and his agent Scott Boras were seeing nothing but dollar signs in their future. The 28-year old Conforto would be hitting free agency in the prime of his career, and he would easily be the most coveted outfielder on the free-agent market should he make it there.
But what many didn’t expect was the disappointing first half of the season that Conforto has endured, which has been a combination of poor production at the plate and injury. While Conforto had been sidelined for the better part of six weeks with a hamstring strain, Conforto wasn’t exactly lighting the world on fire either through his first 33 games with a. 230/.356/.336 slash line. Conforto also had only two home runs and 16 RBI’s to that point.
Since returning from the injured list the struggles at the plate have continued as over Conforto’s last 15 games he has hit .125/.294/.150 which includes an 0-13 slump. What’s even more concerning is the lack of power that Conforto has displayed this season as he’s still sitting on two home runs on the season over 153 at-bats. In comparison to the abbreviated 2020 season, Conforto had nine home runs over 202 at-bats, and 33 home runs in 2019.
With Mets outfielder Michael Conforto struggling through the first half of the season, he has seen his value take a hit as he approaches free agency this offseason.
While Conforto still has a whole second half of the season to turn his offensive struggles around, it’s hard not to imagine how Conforto’s stock has taken a significant hit as we approach the All-Star Break. While Conforto is certainly still capable of getting a deal similar to George Springer’s six-year $150 million contract that he signed with the Toronto Blue Jays, the more he continues to struggle the less attainable that figure may become.
Moving forward we can only hope that Conforto can begin to put it all together after the All-Star break, as the Mets will need him to turn it around offensively if they want to have a legitimate shot at October baseball. But it doesn’t go without saying that you can only wonder if Conforto’s impending free agency has played a role mentally in his struggles this season and the more he struggles the more he may be pressing at the plate.
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Nonetheless, it’s fair to say there is much at stake for both Conforto and the Mets in the second half of the regular season.