When the New York Mets acquired Francisco Lindor, I thought it was a great deal. I had followed Lindor while he was playing for the Cleveland Indians (now the Guardians) and believed him to be a dynamic player. the likes of which the Mets hadn’t seen since Jose Reyes was in his prime, only with more power.
After getting off to a horrific start in 2021, Lindor managed to hit 20 home runs and drive in 63 runs in while playing 125 games. His average finished at .230, the worst of his career, but all of his other offensive numbers were pretty much on par with his career numbers if projected over a full season.
In 84 games, just over the halfway mark, Lindor has been a bit inconsistent at the plate, hovering at .240, but has already hit 15 homers and is among the league leaders with 60 runs batted in while stealing 11 bases.
New York Mets fans seem to be frustrated by Francisco Lindor
Lindor is still being viewed as a bust by many Mets fans…yet he is projected to finish with 30 homers and 120 RBI. Who wouldn’t take that from the shortstop position and No. 3 hitter in the lineup?
I, for one, truly wanted the Mets to re-sign Javy Baez. I loved the energy he brought, but I despised the attitude he projected at the fans when they took to booing the Mets poor play a year ago. He could have been a huge fan favorite in New York and got a huge contract to play side by side with his buddy Lindor. Instead, he alienated the fans, the media, and the organization.
And look at him now. He is such a bust in Detroit. Think about that when you decide to complain about Lindor.
Baez was under the Mendoza Line for much of 2022, but a bit of a surge has gotten him to .212. He has hit eight homers and driven in 31 runs, while swiping three bases. Baez was counted on to be an impact player, and he has been anything but that.
And what about some of the other shortstops who were on the move whom some New York Mets fans would have loved to have had instead of Lindor?
Corey Seager has shown some pop with the Texas Rangers smacking 18 home runs with 43 RBI but has struggled with a .241 average and only three stolen bases.
Carlos Correa, drew a lot of interest from a lot of teams, including the New York Yankees, but he chose the Minnesota Twins. Correa is below his normal production, batting .283 with 10 homers and only 31 RBI and no stolen bases.
Trevor Story is this year’s Javy Baez, willing to move to second base when joining the Red Sox giving way to incumbent Xander Bogaerts. Story probably figured that his numbers at Fenway would be comparable to the numbers he compiled in Colorado…usually would be a safe bet. He has 15 dingers and 55 runs batted in. He has also stolen 10 bases, but he is struggling to make contact while hitting .221.
Of course, Trea Turner is his usual dynamic self with the Dodgers, batting .300 with 11 homers, 59 RBI, and 16 stolen bases.
And what about those shortstops that Mets sent to Cleveland to get Lindor?
Andres Gimenez is having a nice year for the Guardians and made the All Star team sporting a .300 average with 9 home runs and 40 RBI and six stolen bases. Amed Rosario, the other guy in the deal and the Mets starting shortstop for a few years, is hitting at a .279 clip with four homers and 25 RBI while swiping nine bases.
Neither has the combination of power, speed, and fielding skills that Lindor offers. And none of these other one-time options are a switch hitter, with power from both sides of the plate.
It took some time for Carlos Beltran to settle in as a Met some years ago. As it turned out, Beltran had a pretty good career in Flushing. Lindor is only 28 years old. He brings an energy to the team just like Reyes did. Batting averages are down around the Major Leagues...and while Lindor’s is down from his career .285 he averaged in Cleveland, his other numbers are well in line with his prior production.