The New York Mets will have themselves an entire offseason to contemplate how to proceed with the roster, including the DH spot. They’re wrapping up this season with a planned platoon of Daniel Vogelbach and Darin Ruf. Vogelbach gets the righties. Ruf gets the lefties.
Ruf has a team option for next season that probably won’t get picked up. It’s very limiting to have a roster with two guys who are first basemen already playing behind the starter at the position.
The Mets definitely have a couple of options for next year at the DH spot which still involve Vogelbach. Is that what they should have in mind or does New York need to get a little more flexible?
Mets either have to commit to a DH platoon with Daniel Vogelbach next year or move on from him
Vogelbach isn’t a starting first baseman or DH in baseball unless you’re willing to eat up what he does against lefties. The Mets have found the perfect situation for him. Starts or pinch-hitting opportunities exclusively against right-handed pitchers is what feeds perfectly into what he does best. He can take a bite out of any right-handed pitcher that steps on the mound—and yes, by this point, the puns are intentional but weren’t at first.
Vogelbach is an affordable player and also a talented enough hitter to pair alongside someone like Mark Vientos at the DH spot to open next season. Vientos might not be an exceptionally good third baseman or even a passable one at the major league level. He is, however, far more likely to see action at the hot corner or even move into left field. He’d be one guy to pair with Vogelbach.
There’s also a possibility we see the Mets give Francisco Alvarez some of his first tastes of major league action as part of the DH platoon. He’d still catch sometimes. This does open up a whole new debate about whether the Mets would have to carry two other catchers aside from Alvarez or if one is enough. Who would that be, though? James McCann and Tomas Nido don’t have minor league options so one would have to be removed from the roster.
We don’t have to limit the options to what the Mets already have although one possibility is to always shuffle things around. What’s to stop the Mets from moving Pete Alonso to DH more regularly and having Mark Canha play some first base? Or even have Canha take on the role. To keep Francisco Lindor in the lineup and a little more rested, he’d be another guy.
The makeup of next year’s Mets roster around Vogelbach would determine how the platoon goes. Every time a righty starts against the Mets, he’d need to get the nod to begin the game as their DH. Having a credible right-handed option on the bench behind him would be essential, though. Otherwise, it’s too easy to stop a Mets rally with him at the plate.
The Mets don’t have any commitment to Vogelbach beyond this year which is both good and heartbreaking at the same point. His quick rise to fan-favoritism is something every athlete aspires to achieve. It’s his own limitations, however, that may ultimately make this nothing more than a brief romance.