3 free agent outfielders to consider on a minor league deal
An area the New York Mets should continue to consider adding is their minor league outfield depth. The MLB roster is strong enough with Tommy Pham and Jeff McNeil able to provide them with some depth. It wouldn’t hurt to add one more guy with some big league experience.
Before the Mets officially open camp, Billy Eppler should get in touch with the agents of these three outfielders who could provide the club with some additional reinforcements. There may not be too many other places for them to find a home this year.
A last resort to have a job in 2023 could be for these three veteran major league outfielders to willingly accept that they may need to ride the bus in Triple-A.
1) NY Mets free agent target on a minor league deal: Ben Gamel
Ben Gamel spent last year with the Pittsburgh Pirates batting .232/.324/.369. He played all three outfield positions and some first base. He’s more of a left fielder than anything else with enough experience in right field as well.
Gamel has some decent career numbers. He’s a lifetime .253/.333/.385 hitter with an average of 10 home runs per 162 games. He hasn’t been a very good fielder, rarely finishing with a positive WAR defensively. There isn’t one amazing skill he brings to the field. It’s exactly why he could settle on a minor league deal with the Mets.
Swinging from the left side, Gamel is someone that can help the Mets get through any long absence of an outfielder. The team’s best option at the moment, if they did lose an outfielder to an injury, would be Pham or McNeil to step into a corner spot. This does still leave an opening and an opportunity for a promotion.
Gamel hasn’t been much different versus righties or lefties. He’s a lifetime .254/.336/.391 against right-handed pitchers while carrying a .251/.363/.684 slash line versus lefties. The difference is mostly power, something he doesn’t have much of anyway.