If the price ain’t right, why trade away guys like J.D. Davis and Dominic Smith? It’s a mentality the New York Mets need to have this offseason in their chase to become a better club in 2022.
Davis and Smith entered this past season in some pretty big roles. Davis was the starting third baseman and Smith was a couple of yards behind him as the club’s starting left fielder. Neither would finish the year as a regular. Davis’ injuries and poor defense pushed him to the bench. For Smith, it was a weak bat that led to his ouster from the starting lineup.
The writing on the wall is clear: the Mets don’t have big plans for either of these guys. But unless they can actually get some value in return, would it be so horrific to keep each and stash them on the bench in 2022?
The Mets can keep their top two trade candidates around to help the bench
What Davis and Smith can give the Mets at the plate or even in the field can be a bit of a mystery. Full of shortcomings on both sides of the ball, they both do at least have a little flexibility.
This is pretty important with a bench. You don’t want a guy who can strictly play just a single position taking up a roster spot—other than your backup catcher. No. You want guys who can fill in at more than one position when the time comes.
Davis and Smith actually pair well with each other. In a different world, I can almost even see them being in a platoon with one another. Davis gets the call to smash baseballs against the lefties while Smith can do his damage against righties. This wouldn’t work in our world because, for one, Smith was actually pretty great versus southpaws last year in a season without much to praise him about.
I don’t believe the Mets are in a rush to trade either of these players—as much as I still think they eliminate one from their lives. See how the offseason shapes up then return those calls to the teams that have shown interest.
Davis can be an answer at the corner infield and outfield spots. While not gifted at any of the positions, he provides a good right-handed stick for pinch-hitting opportunities and the occasional start.
Smith would provide the ever-important lefty bat to face tough right-handed relievers. Not quite as experienced at different positions, I’m satisfied enough with him as a left fielder and wouldn’t mind seeing the team turn to him late in games for a defensive upgrade at first base.
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When the Mets get active this winter, I would like to see them start from the top. Add players you can start and move guys like these two down the depth chart. If you run out of time, it’s not such a bad duo to have available. They might not warrant more than a start or two each week. But they can help your team defend against a lengthy injury and maybe even provide some gusto if someone else slumps.