Mets free agent signing expected to opt into his minor league deal

It'll be good depth to keep around.
New York Mets Photo Day
New York Mets Photo Day / Elsa/GettyImages

This week will feature a lot of new free agents in Major League Baseball. Opt out clauses for veterans who inked minor league deals are getting flexed. Dominic Smith is a familiar name to New York Mets fans as someone who followed this path. He won’t make the Chicago Cubs roster and will now look for a job elsewhere.

Over in Mets camp, some of the veterans added on minor league deals will have the same decision to make. Jose Iglesias is one of them. After a solid spring, he says there is a “pretty good chance” he’ll remain with the organization and accepted an assignment to Syracuse.

When will the Mets see Jose Iglesias again?

Iglesias is coming off of a 2023 season featuring just 28 games for the San Diego Padres’ Triple-A team. While there, he batted .317/.356/.537. His last big league season was in 2022 when as a member of the Colorado Rockies he took advantage of the hitter-friendly ballpark. He slashed .292/.328/.380 in 467 plate appearances.

Throughout his career, Iglesias has been a high batting average hitter who makes contact. A career average of .279 but with an OBP of just .319 shows both his strength and weakness. He can put the bat on the ball and come away with hits but he isn’t going to draw a whole lot of walks.

A gifted defender who has played mostly shortstop in his career, Iglesias is a long term option if the Mets lost Francisco Lindor for a lengthy period of time. He can also be a second base solution as well. Unfortunately, Iglesias hasn’t played a whole lot of third base where the Mets could use the most help defensively.

The Mets will face a common conundrum if the need for a player like Iglesias arose. His exhausted minor league options would make him a DFA candidate immediately. Do they pull the trigger on calling him up for a 10-day IL stint? If he’s just going to ride the bench, they mine as well give Joey Wendle starts at third base and call upon someone else.

Iglesias goes into Sunday batting .300/.344/.500 this spring. A desire to stay with the organization is positive but maybe not all that meaningful. Wendle signed to just a $2 million deal does make him expendable if he fails to perform. It could be a while before we see Iglesias in Queens. In the case with many minor league depth additions, the more we see the worse things probably are.