The New York Mets signed Harrison Bader to a one-year deal and considering the fact that the deal is worth $10.5 million, he's presumably signing on to be a starter. Bader is a starting-caliber player thanks to his elite glove in center field, but his bat leaves a lot to be desired and his durability is a concern.
With the Bader addition, the Mets now have a full outfield and really only have one more hole to fill on their roster. DH. There are several DH options available, but Justin Turner makes the most sense as a player who can play the infield, mainly at the hot corner, when needed, and be a reliable run producer that this team desperately needs.
With Turner as the only other addition, let's predict the Mets 2024 Opening Day lineup.
The Mets need another big bat after the Harrison Bader signing
1. Brandon Nimmo - LF
2. Francisco Lindor - SS
3. Justin Turner - DH
4. Pete Alonso - 1B
5. Jeff McNeil - 2B
6. Francisco Alvarez - C
7. Starling Marte - RF
8. Brett Baty - 3B
9. Harrison Bader - CF
This projected lineup has six legitimate threats to produce runs, and a potential seventh if Starling Marte can be both healthy and productive. Who knows, maybe even Brett Baty will step up. This lineup has potential, but also comes with a lot of question marks which makes the Bader signing a bit confusing.
The biggest surprise other than the Turner insertion is the outfield allignment. Marte remains in right field but Brandon Nimmo, just one year into signing an eight-year contract last offseason, is already being moved off of center field. He'll still get some action in center, but the Mets did not sign Bader to play either corner spot.
Bader's defense is elite. He only has one Gold Glove to show for it, but a lot of that has to do with health. He's been among the best defenders in center field for years, which is one of the most premium positions in the game. His value comes from his defense. Anything they get offensively from him is gravy.
Overall, this Mets lineup has potential, but a lot of question marks. Can Marte stay healthy? Can Baty give them anything? Can Bader be more than just a glove? The Mets hope the rest of the lineup will be good enough to support Bader's glove-first abilities.
It's the offseason but you can still win big thanks to FanDuel Sportsbook's $150 guaranteed bonus! Deposit at least $10 and bet $5 or more on any game right now and you'll be credited $150 in bonus bets win or lose. Not much time remains, so sign up for FanDuel today!