The New York Mets need to get better this offseason, and they may have to choose between getting rid of two of their better assets to do so. In the brief time that Dominic Smith and J.D. Davis have been at the big league level, they have been productive in their own respects, but also have been the subject of trade speculation. Dominic Smith, for example, had his name thrown around in a possible deal for then-Twins starting pitcher Jose Berrios.
With the impending changes that are planned to be taking place, should either of these two players be moved? And, if so, who? While I love him as a player, and I hold him dear to my heart, I would pick Dominic Smith.
Mets can get the most value out of Dom Smith
Dom performed below expectations for the most part offensively last year, but let’s remember why those expectations were there in the first place. This is a guy who was an offensive force in 2020.
Yes, it was a shortened season, but he still put up impressive numbers. He was 10th in batting average, 4th in slugging % and OPS., 2nd in doubles, and 5th in RBIs. His ceiling is an elite offensive force that can hit anywhere in the lineup. He has enough pop to fit in the middle of the order, with the bat to ball skills to be a table setter.
While his final stats weren’t remarkable, what really impressed me this year about him was his numbers against lefties. In 125 at bats, Dom had a .312/.367/.416 slash-line. Those are certainly all star caliber numbers, no one can argue with that.
What also provides higher upside to Dom is his versatility in the field. I won’t sit here and argue that he’s a gold glove defender, but he’s obviously a good first basemen from what we’ve seen, and he got much better in the outfield this year.
He’s not a rangy outfielder so he would obviously have to play the corners, but he can cover some ground, and can for the most part make the routine plays. Before you say anything, Dom had a .994 fielding percentage last year in the outfield, which is really not that bad considering he’s not a natural outfielder.
He can play first, outfield, and he can DH. I think this presents great value with versatility and also a great bat that can fit anywhere in a big league lineup. On top of that, he’s 26 and has a couple more years of control. He would bring great value back to the Mets in return.
Mets should give J.D. Davis another year
To speak on J.D., I think he’s got potential to be a tremendous offensive talent. However, that’s pretty much where I draw the line with him. To put it nicely, he’s a below-average defender.
He’s got a great arm, but he often fails to make routine plays. When J.D. has time on a routine play at third, he overthinks his throws and either double pumps allowing the runner time to beat the throw, or just makes a bad throw. Don’t even get me started on his play in left field. I’ve seen little leaguers run better routes in the outfield.
J.D. would be a great DH for this team, barring of course that he stays healthy. He’s got great power and pretty good plate discipline as well (he had a .384 OBP in 73 games last year.) I think the best play would for him to open up camp as the DH, and allow him to worry about hitting and hitting only.
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If he plays well, he’s either a great trade asset or a top-level NL DH. Regardless, everyone would win.